Sears - Layaway initial date considered purchase date so price protections and current sales do not apply
I recently went on sears.com to purchase a led 46" television. I found the model I wanted, as I was checking out online, I noticed the layaway option.
Because I was buying this as a father's day gift this was a perfect solution I could guarantee he item was available and would not have to hide it at home.
I made the layaway contract initial payment ($306.28) on may 12th 2011. I made my second payment on may 28th, when my third payment became due I saw that sears had a sale on the model I had on layaway.
While the price was still the same there was a special father's day bundle
(a blu-ray player and 4 pair glasses included). since I was buying the TV anyway I immediately went on line and paid the balance ($919.05).
I received two emails immediately from sears.com, one a receipt for the final payment and, one telling me my purchase was available for pick-up
when I arrived for pick I was told that they could not find the television
and I would have to come back on Tuesday (this was Saturday). Finally one associate said he would go in the back and try to locate it, after about 45 minutes he found it.
I Was then informed that I was not eligible for the bundle because I used layaway it did not matter that I paid the exact same price as the bundle sale. I left having remembered why I have avoided using sears for the past 20 years. It is the same old bait and switch policies that I thought they stopped using years ago.
now to ad insult to injury, the next day I saw the new sears sale the price of the television that I bought on Saturday was now $160.00 less.
I went on line and checked out the sears price protection policy. I checked on all the exclusions (which did not list layaway) to the policy.
the policy states they will refund the difference for any purchase within 14 days, fine since I a receipt showing my purchase was June 11. and this is June 14. so I went on line and filled out the price protection form.
However I was informed that they could not issue a refund because as it was a layaway the initial setup date (may 12) was the date of purchase even though my "purchase" was in their store for 4 weeks awaiting final payment. Again more sears loopholes. they will use any reason not to give you what is advertised.
Now I can return the television an hope I can find it somewhere else,or I can just keep it having learned yet again that sears is really a one time shopping experience. Because once you deal with their non existent customer service and fluid guarantee policies you really would rather shop any where else. because honestly no amount of savings is worth the sales associates that can't be bothered, the time it takes to finally pick up your merchandise and online customer service policy that seems to consist of finding new (or maybe old) ways to deny any compensation due.
I figured out that buying this TV on layaway cost me about $500.00 more ($349.00 dvd/glasses bundle $160.00 price protection refund) than every one else who bought this item in store.
So I will never use sears.com layaway again for any future purchases of electronics. shame on you sears.
Product or Service Mentioned: Sears Protection Plan.