Tighter rules for after Christmas returns

Updated: 12/25/2013 11:09 PM
Created: 12/25/2013 10:15 PM WHEC.com
By: Joangel Concepcion

The after Christmas rush to return unwanted gifts is almost here.

But this year some big-name stores are tightening the rules when it comes to bringing stuff back.

Thursday is sure to be one of the busiest days of the year for a lot of stores, and it's mostly because of all the returns and exchanges after Christmas Day.

Let's face it. Who hasn't received a gift they don't like?

If you're thinking about heading out to the mall or big-box stores Thursday, there are some new restrictions you may need to know, especially if you're looking to exchange or return electronics or appliances.

You will find holiday return periods that are usually 30 days are now much shorter for some big-box stores.

For instance, Best Buy shortened theirs by nine days. Sears will now have a 30 day period instead of 60. The last day to exchange or return electronics to Toys R Us is January 9.

Some stores have a no return policy, while others will only issue a store credit.

It's important to note Overstock.com com will not take back any TVs that are 37 inches or larger, Office Max will not give refunds on any product it no longer stocks, and Amazon.com no longer accepts returns on jewelry without all documents.      

Speaking of documentation, be ready to hand over some personal information for returns. Many stores now require you to show ID and if you've returned a number of items between a 90 day period, you will no longer be able to make a return at all.

Many retail stores now have a database of all returns. Experts say this isn't done to make things difficult for you. It's really to protect their company from fraud.

“They're expecting $3.5-billion in returns out of the $9-billion roughly that will be returned all year, and that is actually more in returns than all of Cyber Monday sales combined,” said Miro Copic, Marketing Professor, San Diego State University.

All major shopping centers in our area will open their doors at 7 a.m. Thursday.


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