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  #1  
Old 04-06-2009, 08:28 AM
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Beware of Boaters World Liquidation Prices

Boaters World is going out of business and they are liquidating their inventory. Went to my local store (Columbia, SC) Friday and bought a two person towable. The sign claims they are offering 20 - 50% off of the ORIGINAL PRICE. The price sticker, dated 3/15/2009, said $209.99 and they knocked 20% off for a selling price of $167.92. After getting it home, I found a different price sticker on the other side of the box. This one, dated 7/31/2008 said the price was $179.99. So they had clearly been selling this item for $179.99 for the last 7 months and they jacked the price up 17% before offering the discount of 20%.

Now I realize liquidation companies buy all the inventory and sell it in cases like this. And I realize they jack prices up before offering their discounts. But in this case, I had proof the item was selling at the lower price before the liquidation.

So I went back there to argue the ORIGINAL PRICE was $179.99 and they should have taken 20% off of that for a selling price of $143.92. The kids in the store kind of laughed it off and said all sales were final. I insisted on talking to a manager so they rang up their manager, Billie Sue Moore, who was not in the store. I politely stated my case, but Ms. Moore did not take too kindly to being called while she was away from the store. She became more and more irate as the conversation progressed and was yelling and swearing at me by the time the call ended.

So caveat emptor at Boaters World. I used to like that store and was sorry to hear they were going under. Maybe it was because of managers like Billie Sue Moore.

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  #2  
Old 04-06-2009, 08:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunedog View Post
Boaters World is going out of business and they are liquidating their inventory. Went to my local store (Columbia, SC) Friday and bought a two person towable. The sign claims they are offering 20 - 50% off of the ORIGINAL PRICE. The price sticker, dated 3/15/2009, said $209.99 and they knocked 20% off for a selling price of $167.92. After getting it home, I found a different price sticker on the other side of the box. This one, dated 7/31/2008 said the price was $179.99. So they had clearly been selling this item for $179.99 for the last 7 months and they jacked the price up 17% before offering the discount of 20%.

Now I realize liquidation companies buy all the inventory and sell it in cases like this. And I realize they jack prices up before offering their discounts. But in this case, I had proof the item was selling at the lower price before the liquidation.

So I went back there to argue the ORIGINAL PRICE was $179.99 and they should have taken 20% off of that for a selling price of $143.92. The kids in the store kind of laughed it off and said all sales were final. I insisted on talking to a manager so they rang up their manager, Billie Sue Moore, who was not in the store. I politely stated my case, but Ms. Moore did not take too kindly to being called while she was away from the store. She became more and more irate as the conversation progressed and was yelling and swearing at me by the time the call ended.

So caveat emptor at Boaters World. I used to like that store and was sorry to hear they were going under. Maybe it was because of managers like Billie Sue Moore.
My father said the same thing. Too bad they're closing, there was one reasonably close to me (the others are a much longer hike). I guess it's Defender from now on.

I didn't realize they were tied in with Ritz Camera.
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  #3  
Old 04-06-2009, 08:52 AM
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This behavior is standard operating procedure. Same thing occurred at Circuit City.

It's your obligation to research the price and determine if you're paying the proper amount. You bought it.........at what you determined was a good deal.........no refunds...........and then you got cold feet and wanted to bring it back.

Sorry, no money for you.
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Old 04-06-2009, 08:59 AM
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If you put it on your credit card, dispute the charges.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:15 AM
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If you put it on your credit card, dispute the charges.
What are you disputing?
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  #6  
Old 04-06-2009, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Brian Carlton View Post
This behavior is standard operating procedure. Same thing occurred at Circuit City.

It's your obligation to research the price and determine if you're paying the proper amount. You bought it.........at what you determined was a good deal.........no refunds...........and then you got cold feet and wanted to bring it back.

Sorry, no money for you.
Exactly. You still got a discount at least.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:20 AM
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You act as though you're surprised. I had an acquaintance who used to work for Zales jewelers. She said they'd stay til about 11:30 at night, marking everything up before their 'sale' the next day. Furniture stores also perform this tactic.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:26 AM
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It's also an illegal tactic. The item has to have been sold for one year at the higher price before you can claim it a discount.
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Old 04-06-2009, 09:27 AM
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Store liquidations are usually not the great bargains one would imagine they are. I have ceased even going into store that are having "Going Out Of Business" sales. I'd rather pay a little more (maybe, maybe not) and having some recourse in case there are problems.
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  #10  
Old 04-06-2009, 03:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Carlton View Post
This behavior is standard operating procedure. Same thing occurred at Circuit City.

It's your obligation to research the price and determine if you're paying the proper amount. You bought it.........at what you determined was a good deal.........no refunds...........and then you got cold feet and wanted to bring it back.

Sorry, no money for you.
I didn't get cold feet and want to return it. I just tried to get them to honor the advertisement they had plastered on signs on the front door.

I considered this a deceptive act as defined by the laws of my state (South Carolina). Quoting from our state code:

"SECTION 39-5-20 ... Unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce are hereby declared unlawful."

The penalty: "If a court finds that any person is willfully using or has willfully used a method, act or practice declared unlawful by Section 39-5-20, the Attorney General, upon petition to the court, may recover on behalf of the State a civil penalty of not exceeding five thousand dollars per violation."

While it may be "standard operating procedure" where you live, I believe it is illegal where this transaction occurred. It appears the practice is pervasive. I will contact the state Attorney General.
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  #11  
Old 04-06-2009, 03:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmitch View Post
You act as though you're surprised. I had an acquaintance who used to work for Zales jewelers. She said they'd stay til about 11:30 at night, marking everything up before their 'sale' the next day. Furniture stores also perform this tactic.
I also worked retail in my college years, and we frequently marked up prices on items prior to some "once in a lifetime" sale. It was interesting to see items fly off the shelf that wouldn't budge for months prior to the "sale".

I stay away from "liquidation" sales because of this. Almost every store that has one clearly raises their prices.

As more stores close during this depressed economy, this tactic will be prevalent...
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  #12  
Old 04-06-2009, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by sunedog View Post
While it may be "standard operating procedure" where you live, I believe it is illegal where this transaction occurred. It appears the practice is pervasive. I will contact the state Attorney General.
There's no definition for "original price".

Good luck with that. You're going nowhere with it.
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  #13  
Old 04-06-2009, 03:47 PM
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I havn't been inside a Boaters World in years.

I don't pay retail, wholesale without sales tax is fantastic, be it Port Supply I mean West Marine, or Kellogg.

By whipping out the Port card I can usualy get anything in a West Marine for 20%-50% off list. Although I prefer just to order it through my buddy so I don't have to go to the store, and to pump up his numbers so we can go to the end of year dealer conventions at the casino.


In New England, Defender, James Town, and West Marine are your best retail places. I love Kellogg and Lewis for wholesale. Kellogg can get some really good deals on MerCruiser stuff.

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