Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Millennial Money: 4 Must-Do's if Your Order Arrives Damaged
gvw_ap_news
By Associated Press
Published 5 years ago on
October 5, 2019

Share

NEW YORK — Nowadays, consumers shop online for just about everything. So you’ve likely experienced the stinging disappointment when a TV, piece of furniture or something else you ordered finally arrives on your doorstep — damaged.
Here’s what you should do if your delivery comes in less-than-optimal shape.

1. Examine the Item (Thoroughly)

As soon as you receive a dented box or open a package only to discover broken merchandise, get to work. Take pictures to document the condition of the delivery when it arrived — retailers may want proof. Hang onto any enclosed packing slips and return labels.
If the item is brought into your home as opposed to being left on your porch, inspect it for damage before you’re asked to sign off on the delivery. This procedure is common with large products such as a couch or dining set.

2. Contact the Retailer (Quickly)

Most businesses have return policies on their websites, and there will typically be a section within that policy that addresses damaged or defective items. With a quick Google search, you can pull up such policies for big-name retailers like Amazon, Overstock, Wayfair and Best Buy.

“If it’s a defective item, the store should just step up and make it right, get you a replacement item as fast as possible. If it’s a warranty issue — if the thing has broken since you’ve taken delivery — now you have to deal with the manufacturer and possibly their warranty underwriter.” — Kevin Brasler , executive editor at the nonprofit Consumers’ Checkbook
Look for information about how the damaged product should be handled. The return policy at Lowe’s advises contacting customer care within three days of receiving a damaged item.
Best Buy’s policy says customers can return products that were defective or damaged in shipping either to a store location or through the mail during the return and exchange time period. The retailer says to call for return-by-mail instructions and it’ll cover “all reasonable and customary ground shipping fees.”
Report the broken item right away so the retailer doesn’t think you’re responsible for the damage, advises Kevin Brasler, executive editor at the nonprofit Consumers’ Checkbook.
If you don’t notice the damage for weeks, instead of shipping the item back to the retailer for a replacement, you may need to ship it to the manufacturer for repair.
“If it’s a defective item, the store should just step up and make it right, get you a replacement item as fast as possible,” Brasler says. “If it’s a warranty issue — if the thing has broken since you’ve taken delivery — now you have to deal with the manufacturer and possibly their warranty underwriter.”

3. Unpack the Issue (Calmly)

Once you get on the phone with a retailer — or hop into a chat with an online representative — clearly articulate how you’d like the problem resolved, says Nicole Leinbach, founder of Retail Minded and an author of “Retail 101: The Guide to Managing and Marketing Your Retail Business.”
“Understand what you want from that conversation so that you can best lead that conversation to a resolution,” she says.
Remaining calm can greatly benefit your interaction with a customer service rep. Acknowledge that your frustration is not directed at the agent, but rather at the situation, Leinbach says.
Once you conclude the call, see the process through to completion. Ship the product back, if you’re asked to, and stay on top of the retailer to ensure your replacement arrives in a timely manner.
If the seller isn’t willing to work with you on a legitimate issue, tell them you will report them to the Better Business Bureau, recommends Charles R. Taylor, a marketing professor at Villanova School of Business.
If that doesn’t change their minds, and you paid for the item with a credit card, you can dispute the charge. Check with your credit card company for full details, but Brasler says 9 times out of 10, the credit card issuer will side on your behalf.

4. Read Return Policies (Proactively)

To save yourself time and hassle in the future, Leinbach recommends reading return policies before making a purchase. That’s particularly important for large items such as furniture, which may be more of a logistical challenge to send back.

“Understanding the return policy upfront is so important to any online purchase decision.” — Nicole Leinbach, founder of Retail Minded
“Understanding the return policy upfront is so important to any online purchase decision,” Leinbach says.
Similarly, keep time frames in mind. Ask yourself questions like, when is the product expected to be delivered? Will you be home? Will you be able to inspect it before the return window passes?
Even if a damaged product arrives on your porch before you’ve done your due diligence, you can still follow the steps above to make things right. The good news? Taylor says many companies have favorable policies.
It’ll just take a little extra work on your end to follow them.

DON'T MISS

RIP, Basketball and Broadcasting Great, Supreme ‘Deadhead’ Bill Walton, 71

DON'T MISS

Bulldogs to Face UC Santa Barbara in NCAAs After Amazing MW Baseball Comeback

DON'T MISS

Newgarden Goes Back-to-Back at Indy 500 for Roger Penske’s Record-Extending 20th Win

DON'T MISS

Netanyahu Acknowledges ‘Tragic Mistake’ After Rafah Strike Kills Dozens of Palestinians

DON'T MISS

This Is the Rare Financial Merger That Will Help Working People and Small Business

DON'T MISS

Amal Clooney Is Among Legal Experts Who Recommended War Crimes Charges in Israel-Hamas War

DON'T MISS

Fresno Nears End of Truck Route Study. Residents & Businesses Aren’t Sure of the Impacts.

DON'T MISS

The Cost to Inform California Voters? $118,000 a Page for Official Guide

DON'T MISS

Top Russian Military Officials Are Being Arrested. Why Is It Happening?

DON'T MISS

Delta Tunnel Water Project May Finally Be Nearing a Historic Decision

UP NEXT

CA Senate Passes Hospital Seismic Compliance Bill: What’s the Impact on Local Hospitals?

UP NEXT

UC Berkeley Faces a Summer of Discontent as Gaza Protesters Remain Steadfast

UP NEXT

Man Sentenced to 25 Years for Teaching Bomb-Making to Person Targeting Authorities

UP NEXT

UAW Files Objection to Mercedes Vote, Accuses Company of Intimidating Workers

UP NEXT

Fresno Man Charged with Throwing Meth into Mendota Prison Yard

UP NEXT

American Airlines Retreats After Blaming a 9-Year-Old for Not Seeing a Hidden Camera in a Lavatory

UP NEXT

Portland Nurse Returns Home After Treating Gaza Burn Victims

UP NEXT

RNC HQ Evacuated: Blood Vials Addressed to Trump Prompt Security Alert

UP NEXT

Ex-Employee Kills 2, Injures 3 in Suburban Philadelphia Linen Company Shooting

UP NEXT

Search and Rescue Ongoing After Iowa Tornado; 1 Dead

Netanyahu Acknowledges ‘Tragic Mistake’ After Rafah Strike Kills Dozens of Palestinians

8 hours ago

This Is the Rare Financial Merger That Will Help Working People and Small Business

8 hours ago

Amal Clooney Is Among Legal Experts Who Recommended War Crimes Charges in Israel-Hamas War

9 hours ago

Fresno Nears End of Truck Route Study. Residents & Businesses Aren’t Sure of the Impacts.

9 hours ago

The Cost to Inform California Voters? $118,000 a Page for Official Guide

2 days ago

Top Russian Military Officials Are Being Arrested. Why Is It Happening?

2 days ago

Delta Tunnel Water Project May Finally Be Nearing a Historic Decision

2 days ago

CA Senate Passes Hospital Seismic Compliance Bill: What’s the Impact on Local Hospitals?

2 days ago

Take This Memorial Day Quiz Before Warming up the Grill

3 days ago

Hate Wasting Money? Use These 7 Hacks to Feed Your Family for Less

3 days ago

RIP, Basketball and Broadcasting Great, Supreme ‘Deadhead’ Bill Walton, 71

Bill Walton, who starred for John Wooden’s UCLA Bruins before becoming a Hall of Famer for his NBA career and one of the biggest stars...

6 hours ago

6 hours ago

RIP, Basketball and Broadcasting Great, Supreme ‘Deadhead’ Bill Walton, 71

6 hours ago

Bulldogs to Face UC Santa Barbara in NCAAs After Amazing MW Baseball Comeback

7 hours ago

Newgarden Goes Back-to-Back at Indy 500 for Roger Penske’s Record-Extending 20th Win

8 hours ago

Netanyahu Acknowledges ‘Tragic Mistake’ After Rafah Strike Kills Dozens of Palestinians

Photo of person standing in front of a Capitol One building in San Francisco
8 hours ago

This Is the Rare Financial Merger That Will Help Working People and Small Business

9 hours ago

Amal Clooney Is Among Legal Experts Who Recommended War Crimes Charges in Israel-Hamas War

9 hours ago

Fresno Nears End of Truck Route Study. Residents & Businesses Aren’t Sure of the Impacts.

2 days ago

The Cost to Inform California Voters? $118,000 a Page for Official Guide

MENU

CONNECT WITH US

Search

Send this to a friend