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Buying a washer or how to loose a customer

A few days ago we ordered a new washer in one of Panama City's home improvement shops. We went to Do It Center at Multiplaza Pacific, which is one of the newer malls in the city. There we found a mid-level washer made by General Electric, paid $439 and expected the delivery this Wednesday. One important topic during our conversation with the sales clerk was that we did not want the machine on display, but a new one in its original packaging.

Somehow we expected things to happen... Yesterday the delivery guys showed up at our apartment and brought in a dirty washer without the original packaging and the accessories in a dirty bag put inside the bowel.

My wife called the store and explained to them she is rejecting the delivery as we had paid for a new machine and not a used one. The reason why I'm writing this here is the response she got. The person on the other end of the line wanted her to come in person to the store in order to change the invoice. There was no explanation as to why they want to change the invoice. Maybe they wanted to change the invoice from "new" to "used"? It was a bit weird and the fact that their phone system cuts calls after 3 minutes just contributed to the bad experience with them. In the end, after five 3 minute calls, they promised to deliver a new machine this morning.

But guess what? Nobody showed up today. So my wife called them again just to find out that can't deliver a new machine. At least they offered to give us our money back.

What went wrong? I guess they don't have much on stock. What they have in their show room is almost everything they've got and probably a lot of local customers are happy with just that. The girl on the sales floor just promised the delivery of a new machine without checking the inventory first.

Now we will buy the washer somewhere else and they've lost a customer due to their bad customer service. If they had called us the day after the sales and offered another model, probably we would have accepted it. But instead they tried to complicate our life.

I guess the best way to avoid this is to have them show you the product you just bought and not trust them to have it in the warehouse.

Update: We had to call our bank and dispute the credit card charge by Do It Center, as they were unable to refund the money to the card themselves. At least paying by credit card gives you a second chance to get your money back.

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