Home Solicitation Law in VA

Are there cancellation rights that homeowners in Virginia must be given?

In order to protect homeowners from smooth talking salesman, home solicitation sales acts have been passed that gives the buyer in any home solicitation sale the right to cancel the contract within a set number of days after signing. A home solicitation sale extends to any sale that takes place not at the seller’s place of business but does not have to have been at the buyer’s home. Home improvement contractors can often fall under these acts and therefore have to give the buyer the right to cancel within the contract.

In Virginia the contract must contain a statement listing the buyer’s right to cancel along with a page at the back of the contract with information on how to exercise that right. The buyer is given three days from the time of the sale to cancel. There is an exception to this cancellation period if the work was requested in response to an emergency. In such a case the work can be started immediately without a time for cancellation. For example, if there is water damage the work can be started right away in order to prevent further damage without having to wait to see if the contract is cancelled.

If no notice of this right to cancel is given to the homeowner, the homeowner is able to cancel the contract at any time and is not required to make any payments for materials or labor. This could lead to the contractor doing the work for free if they forget to include this provision.