PF Weekly Grab a Brew

Should The Brick honour this customers claim on her extended warranty? : PF Weekly Grab a brew #78

grab-a-brew-online-extended warrantyWHO IS RIGHT THE CUSTOMER OR THE RETAILER?

 

Claiming on an extended warranty may be like talking to a “Brick” wall. Make sure you know what you are buying and if you don’t then don’t buy it.

OK, to be fair we need to understand as consumers that there may be fine print when we purchase an extended warranty.

Not only that but what is interpreted by the retailer might not be what we as consumers interpret which may cause issues or concerns down the line.

You might actually feel that you need a lawyer to interpret the extended warranty just so you know exactly what it means to you. I’m pretty sure a lawyer has done the same or written the extended warranty for the retailer. Sounds a bit wishy-washy but that’s the beauty of “customer protection” these days that you pay for out-of-pocket.

If you don’t understand EVERYTHING you are buying don’t buy it. If you have to talk to a manager or head office, call. It reminds of the people who sign on the dotted line after listening to someone selling them a product and believing them only to find out they got shafted. Sad, I know but that’s the way money rolls these days.

 

Extended warranty

 

Buying a product and expecting it to last a certain amount of time certainly doesn’t seem too out of the ordinary, especially when you’ve bought the “extended warranty” that always seems to get thrust upon you by the sales staff.

I’m no shopping guru by any means but I never buy the extended warranty on anything in the first place because I’m a great believer in keeping things in good condition which leads to years of faithful service.

I’ll admit I have had things go wrong but they have always been within the 12 months standard manufacturer’s warranty. I’ve had no trouble in claiming the warranty or receiving the original purchase price back if the repair/exchange wasn’t satisfactory.

That is provided it was claimed with-in the warranty time frame which did not happen with our Kitchen-Aid food processor which I talked about in an earlier post where it failed after the warranty expired.

 

The Brick

 

We have furniture in our house that is a few years old and even then we bought that second-hand and yet it still looks the same as the day we bought it, except if we haven’t dusted. So when I saw this story about a lady being refused her claim on the extended warranty on furniture she bought at The Brick I wanted to know more.

She bought a premium leather sofa and love seat in 2009 and bought an extended warranty with it for an extra $300. Move into the present and she’s claiming on the extended warranty for the seams coming apart and the leather peeling.

Now first, we’ve been to The Brick a couple of times and I’ll agree that some of the furniture looks nice from a distance, but get up close and the finishing is not what you’d expect. That’s not to say that all furniture is like this but you need to know what top-quality really is if you’re paying for it.

You’re not buying hand crafted furniture, you’re buying imported mass-produced furniture from such places as Vietnam, Cambodia and China. One persons “Premium” is another person’s “Low grade” and I would imagine it goes along the standard for pretty much most stuff.

Another well-known department store sells Italian made leather sofas as well as others and another furniture store sells sofas made in Canada. Now, Italian made sofas are pretty well-known to be of a higher grade than a far eastern version. But people are taken in by the prices at places like The Brick because they tend to be cheaper and then they run those tent sales every so often.

Have you ever looked at the damaged section at many big box type furniture stores? That’s what’s your furniture could end up looking like. Check out the quality of the damaged items and you’ll get a feel for the full price stuff. Even if they stand behind the Quality of their products there has to be some form of responsibility of the owner to take reasonable care of the product as well.

I’m not saying don’t shop at The Brick my wife has purchased appliances in the past with no issues but you get what you pay for these days.

 

The issue

 

Anyways, the lady in question has been denied repairs on the extended warranty because apparently they are not covered, surprise-surprise. I don’t know how she takes care of what she owns or what the couch looks like but by the sounds of it the piece is in rough shape.

The news article also lists the fact that in Central and Northern Alberta of the 700 complaints to the Better Business Bureau in the furniture stores category 90% of the complaints were against the Brick.

The comments on the article weren’t much to write home about either. It seems that more than a few people have had a similar experience with The Brick extended warranty or just extended warranties in general.

However, The Brick did respond with the fact that “Abuse and neglect, along with wear and tear are two items excluded from the warranty” which is understandable. I’ve personally seen people’s houses and the furniture in it in a state I can only describe as decomposing it’s that bad. Not to say that this lady had a house that bad, but looking after what you have goes a long way in life.

We have a faux-leather couch set bought 5 years ago and although we don’t have kids we had a pet (not allowed on any furniture) and we use it daily and it’s still in mint condition with no scratches. Many would expect a faux-leather couch to fall apart but that’s not the case. Many times it’s about how well you look after what you own. It’s all about circumstances.

We take care of it and clean it down and use leather wipes to make sure we keep it in tip-top shape. Just the other day our nephew who often builds forts on the couch spilled his milk all over and we cleaned it up right away. In fact all of our furniture is still as beautiful as the day we bought it used.

As readers of these articles it’s always a matter of he said, she said, they said and they won’t or will do. Sounds a bit over the top but that’s the way it goes when things don’t go the way the customer or retailer wants. Is it worth it for the retailer to just sort the problem and save reputation for the company?

We went to a sell-off of furniture when we bought our house from a store called Easy Home (which is a furniture rental company) and we were astounded at the condition that furniture came back in. I’ve seen better stuff at the dump. Hence, that’s why we bought the precise amount of zero items from Easy Home.

I decided to look at The Bricks standing on the BBB website only to discover that the number of complaints is actually at 644 with 217 regarding warranty issues, 285 regarding products or service as well as a Government action against the company.

We’ve found that the better quality items can be purchased second-hand at the shops, garage sales, Kijiji or at store mark downs because it’s been on display for prices you wouldn’t believe and it doesn’t come with any type of warranty let alone an extended warranty.

So, although The Brick will take care of the extended warranty issues they will cover the customer is out the other issues she deems should be covered under what she thought she purchased was “full-coverage”.

What are your thoughts about who is right and wrong in this extended warranty situation and do you purchase them?

 

Top recipe

 

Kale and sausage soup

If you don’t already know I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I share recipes from other Foodie Bloggers from around the world.

Once a week I pick one recipe that has been submitted as my Top Recipe of the week. Trust me when I say this is no easy task as some of these foodies can cook up a storm.

This week I picked a soup recipe since it’s been a while that I’ve shared something as delicious as a Sausage and Kale soup. This recipe comes to us from the blog Savor Life’s Flavours.

 

Weekly CBB posts

 

If you missed any CBB posts from the week here is the list of posts you can catch up on reading!

 

Weekly reads

 

Every week I share a few of the best personal finance blog posts that I read online over the past week with all of you.

Please enjoy my Top 7 picks

My Editor’s Pick goes to my good mate Cat Alford at Budget Blonde whose post went viral and I think you should read it too!

What Nobody Tells You About The First Three Months Of Motherhood

 

Well, that’s a wrap for this PF Friday’s Grab a brew #78. Happy budgeting and I’ll see you here again next week when I do it all over again.

-Mr.CBB

 

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