Relax the Back / Shady sales tactics and refusal to accept responsibility for mistaken order
Relax the Back in Little Rock is a franchise, owned and operated by Eric Elizondo. Since it is a franchise, the corporate offices have little say in how Eric operates his business. This affords him the freedom to engage in shady business practices, as I will explain.
I work from home, and I needed a good chair. I'm often in the area where the store is located, and wandered in one day to see what kind of chairs they might have. I met Eric, and he showed me around his storeroom. I ended up selecting the Lifeform chair with the lumbar support, and memory foam in the seat and back. Really nice chair, and very comfortable. I bought it on the spot. The chair as I originally ordered it was close to 2000 dollars.
Later that afternoon, I decided that 2000 dollars might be a bit high for an office chair. I had a little help coming to this decision. :) I called the store up and explained that I was going to have to change my order, and could we please go with the mesh back chair I had seen. The chair was going to be around 900 dollars with headrest. Eric explained that I should keep the headrest as I would need it. I said I would think about it and call him back. At this point, I believed that the order had been changed to the mesh back chair.
I called back the next day and spoke with one of his sales reps. I told him the situation and that I had decided not to go with the head rest, but would like the mesh backed chair I had discussed with Eric. After hanging up with him, I was under the impression that I would be getting a chair with mesh backing and no headrest.
3 or so weeks later when the chair arrived, it was the original chair I had ordered minus the head rest. I didn't realize it at first, and so didn't mention it while they were here installing it. I called back later and told Eric that he had ordered the wrong chair. This is where it gets interesting.
Eric did not remember our conversation. He refused to take the chair back unless I gave him a 30%(!) restocking fee of 500 dollars to cover the shipping fees. His argument was that he would be unable to sell it. Since it was a special order chair (because I picked a color for it), it was not eligible for the 30 day money back guarantee. He instead offered me a 200 dollar credit.
I spoke with corporate who, although very nice and very helpful, were unable to do anything about the situation.