Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
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Monday, December 13, 2010

Those purple boots are causing me problems

Okay. Here's the scoop:

At the end of November, I ordered a pair of purple boots from Amerimark. My account was charged when they were shipped, I received them, everything was fine, but they were too small. So I sent them back for an exchange of a size up. No other difference. Friday they received the boots and issued me a refund. But...a refund takes 3-5 business days to process. Then today they shipped the new ones and charged my account for the price of the shoes. The refund hasn't gone through yet, of course.

I have almost $15 in my account. I have one transaction for $13 out, for Kroger, plus this new charge for $26, leaving my account at a minus in pending. So I called both Amerimark and the bank and so here's what may or may not happen:

1) Amerimark charge stays in pending long enough for refund to be issued, no overdraught.
2) Kroger goes through first, then the Amerimark charge, and one overdraught fee. If that happens, the bank is willing to refund the fee since I haven't had any fee refunds on my account this year.
3) Amerimark charge goes through at same time or first, in which case there will be two overdraught fees. The bank is willing to refund one fee. I can apply to Amerimark to pay for the other but it is unlikely to happen so I'll likely just be out an amount of money greater than the amount of the shoes cost, just because Amerimark mucked with my account for a different size of the same item, at the same price and due to no fault of my own. Which just sucks.

Granted, this would have not been the case if I had used a credit rather than a debit card, but I don't have a credit card.

A lot of people actually don't have credit cards and rely on debit cards to do business. I wish that companies would consider this when putting together their refund/exchange policies. I realise that they did this to help keep their inventory straight, but there has to be another way than this. It was the same item, the same price--the only difference was the size. There was no need to do anything with the card--they already had the correct amount of money. I even paid for shipping the items back. And as a result, if this goes sour, I very much doubt I will use this company again and double check any exchanges I ever do in the future. I've gotten replacement items with Amazon without them bothering my card, but that was for the same book. I don't know, this may just have to be chalked up to a learning experience. But with any luck, scenario #1 or #2 will work out and I'll get paid on Thursday without any extra fees.

I hate it when I get screwed financially and it's not my fault. I know it usually is, but not this time. I just want a pair of boots I can wear in the snow, and not at over double the price. :(

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