Restocking fees hamper returns after the holidays

By Diane Walker - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – You know to check the store's return policy but what about restocking fees? Those dollars multiply as some stores charge for taking back items.

Customers returning merchandise to h.h.gregg are charged a 20 percent restocking fee on high end electronics and appliances. That's the highest amount on the retailers list we compiled. h.h.gregg also has a 14-day return policy with a receipt.

Best Buy -- with its 15 percent restocking fee on laptops, cameras and GPS -- is the second highest, which seems to be the industry average. Best Buy also has a 14-day return policy on all merchandise except for GPS which is 30 days after Christmas.

CompUSA known as TigerDirect, charges 15 percent, must have same packing. Customers have 130 days on returns, but the item must be returned by the person who made the purchase.

Computer World's 30-day return policy includes a 15 percent fee on all returns. Without a receipt you must have the name of the person who made the purchase.

Expect a 10 to 15 percent restocking fee at Radio Shack on GPS and laptops. You have 30 days to return an item. Without a receipt, you get a 90 day store credit.

Apple store is charging a 10 percent restocking fee if the box is open. It's accepting returns through January 8. If you don't have a receipt, the item must scan as one of their products, otherwise Apple won't accept it.

JC Penny has a 90 day return policy if the item still has tags. For electronics, it's also 90 days return. No receipt, you get the lowest sale price. With a receipt, you'll get the price paid for the item.

At Bed Bath and Beyond, there's no limit on time of return. Customers get a full refund with a receipt and store credit without one.

There's no penalty for customers returning merchandise at Target, Walmart, and Kmart. No restocking fees and a 90-day return policy.

Here's why most stores have no cash refund policies -- the dirty work of shop lifters; thieves returning stolen items for cash.

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