CompUSA Won't Honor Rebates For Items Purchased At Closing Stores

A reader writes in with a tip about CompUSA’s crappy fire sale:

I made a purchase this past weekend that qualified for a $50 rebate. I attempted to follow the rebate process and was told by their Corporate Rebate folks (800-266-7872) – they would not honor it. They added, it would be honored if the store was one of the ones remaining open or website. You might want to publicize this to save folks from being “lured” by offers that will not be honored.

Sure enough, CompUSA has a “no rebates at closing stores” policy. From their website:

Effective immediately, customers in closing stores are not eligible for CompUSA rebates, and manufacturer rebates will not be available. If an item was purchased prior to 2/27/07, and qualifies for a rebate, please follow the normal submission instructions located on your rebate form. The closing store will not participate in CompUSA’s national ads. However, the closing stores will have their own sales; pretty much every item in the store will be on sale, and the closing stores may have their own ads too.

Well, at least “pretty much every item in the store will be on sale.” You just don’t see enough use of the phrase “pretty much every” in store policies these days.—MEGHANN MARCO

CompUSA

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  1. Falconfire says:

    I got a good question. If the rebates are manufacturer rebates (which many of CompUSA’s are) how is it legal to deny them from consumers? The manufacturer is the one making the rebate, CompUSA is just the servicing group handing out the forms and such I thought?

  2. Coder4Life says:

    I would not recommend anyone to make a major purchase at a CompUSA sale, just because you are 99% going to get screwed.

    If the item is defective, or you just dont like the product you are out of luck. Also you can get better deals on items at non closing stores especially for computers & tvs, with the rebates.

    Also they have no reason to make you good deals on low profit products, because they have already transferred lots of computer inventories to other stores that are not closing. Try going to a non closing store and they will have their full upstock filled with computers, and laying all over their warehouse and stuff.

  3. xanax25mg says:

    Shouldn’t Consumerist have titled the piece “CompUSA Won’t Pay Rebates—SCAM!!!!” and then point out the website says it wont do it for stores that are closing?

  4. RandomHookup says:

    @Falconfire:

    It’s possible that the manufacturer’s rebate will still be honored, but it depends on the terms. You notice that the disclaimer that they will “not be available…”

    As they say on the bargain hunting sites, YMMV.

  5. Scazza says:

    Umm, was the rebate at all advertised in store? if so, they MUST honor it.

  6. royal72 says:

    my question as well scazza.

  7. healthdog says:

    It must have been advertised in the store – how else would the reader have known there was a CompUSA rebate? This is beyond sleazy.

  8. abartonkc says:

    Ahh yes, just another reason why CompUSA and rebates suck. Although you probably have the same probability of getting the rebate if you buy it at as store that isn’t closing, which is just as close to 0%.

  9. TampaShooters says:

    This is why a bunch of their stores are closing, because of their high prices and deceptive practices.

  10. pete says:

    I guess at this rate it won’t be long before the rest of the stores shut down.
    Can’t wait for that “firesale”…

  11. itmustbeken says:

    This whole thing is a crock. I went to our local one which is (thankfully) closing and there wasn’t anything I couldn’t find cheaper or better somewhere else.

    Goodbye CompUSA, you will not be missed.

  12. sasquatchbill says:

    I hate CompUSA. Luckily for me, some wiseass in my family bought me a giftcard for CompUSA for Christmas. Hooray.

    I was at my local CompUSA store yesterday trying to use the card and found out the following:
    The inventory in the closing stores is now owned by a liquidation company. This is why there are no returns or rebates – the liquidation company is in the business of making liquid assets, not pleasing customers.

    They don’t care if are happy, because it’s not like you can return to the store if you were.

    This story is common business practice. Stop crying wolf.

  13. thrillhouse says:

    Most stores will not honor rebates or coupons when closing. Whatever their reason for closing – going out of business, store moving – discounts like that are rarely honored and is usually stated in bold print all over the store including the entrance and at the cash register. Standard practice from what I’ve seen.

    I also usually don’t care because I’m typically getting 60-90% off. Here that doesn’t seem to be the case.

  14. Mogbert says:

    See, from a previous thread, you may recall me defending the “In-Store Pickup”.

    Now you will see my other side. The “you won’t like me when I’m angry” side.

    DON’T buy anything from the closing CompUSA’s! Period.

    The “Firesales” and the “Clearances” are being handled by a very underhanded (IMO) company, and you would do better to order it online for delivery, if you have to get it at CUSA.

    Just to show that I’m not a CompUSA fanboy or a PR “plant”.

  15. Cap'n Jack says:

    @Jaideepg:
    Nope, won’t miss ‘em. I dunno why this rebate article is much of a surprise. I got maybe 2 out of 5 rebates from CompUSA, ever!

  16. radioboy says:

    In my local CompUSA, a lot of the laptops are tagged with rebates. The tags are along the lines of “Save double! Normal: $1895. Clearance: $1695. Rebates: $95. Final: $1600!”. These are tags put there by the closeout company.

  17. izzyd3434 says:

    Yeah, what Shadgenki said….I didn’t even get my rebates from CompUSA when they WERE still in business. I for one, am happy that they are closing their stores. I miss the old days of radio shack when the people that worked there actually knew what they were talking about.
    —–
    Shredder

  18. Edidid says:

    @radioboy: Same in a MN store which is closing.

    I was browsing the video game section and also noticed they raised the price of many of the games which were previously $29.9X to $34.99 (and some $39.99) with a big 10% off all video games sign. With such lack of respect for customers it is amazing they lasted as long as they did.

  19. mantari says:

    Mogbert, I hate to say it, but, ITS A TRAP!

    Your advice is EXACTLY what a CompUSA plant would say? “Please! Don’t buy anything from the clearance company. We’ve already sold them the merchandise. Buy everything you need from US instead!”

    Actually, come to think of it, a plant would also want you to buy in-store so that you can potentially find more items to purchase! Hmmmm……. ;)

  20. jillmatrix says:

    I went to their supposed clearance sale over the weekend. Almost nothing in the store was marked down more than 10%. The good stuff was only 5% off. And there are no exchanges if the item doesn’t work – another kind of crappy practice.

  21. digicool says:

    Guys, look. I do not know why you are all complaining about rebates in a closing store. The store is going out of business! Use common sense. Things will not work like they would in a non closing store so stop you bitching. There are very good deals in the store. For instance. All Monster products are 30% off, cheaper than you can get online. As well as cases, powersupplies and Tech parts. All less than Newegg. Go get a deal and be happy.

  22. thrillhouse says:

    @Edidid:

    Ummm. have you ever been to a store closing sale? This is how it works:

    >Competitive pricing is over. Expect something more like MSRP.
    >Initial discounts suck. Don’t bother going in until things get more serious, but do note the store closing date.
    >As the days and weeks dwindle the discounts get better. Even stores that are just moving to a bigger and better location down the street won’t move much merchandise to the new location, so they are going to sell everything, fixtures included.
    >In the last couple weeks you’ll see better deals – 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90% off, things like that. Before that, I wouldn’t even bother.

    See despite the store going under, its still a business, and they still intend on making some money. Racks full of xbox games aren’t worth shit to a store that isn’t open. Initial discounts are going to suck, but some people – imagine this – are dumb enough to see a “store closing – must liquidate” sign and go running in to buy a bunch of junk at 10-20% off. Only trouble is that 10-20% off might get you down to what the item was marked at when they weren’t going under.

    Patience, grasshopper, patience.

  23. Jaded says:

    1) I was in CompUSA this past Saturday and was tempted to get a power supply which had a rebate. I knew of the rebate because I saw mention of it on a bargains site. Common sense time: I asked one of the store managers if the rebate would be honored. He said in no uncertain terms: “There is no rebate on this — the rebate you saw was from CompUSA, and we’re no longer a CompUSA store — the inventory was sold to an independent liquidator”. There you have it. This was in Dublin, OH.

    2. Two different stores had different prices on items. One had a PSP at 20% off, the other at 5%. One had a Nokia PDA at $399 and 5% off, the other at $299 at 20% off. Go figure. Total scam.

  24. doctor_cos wants you to remain calm says:

    CompUSA sucks, they should close all of them and leave room for Quizno’s or GameStop or anything else but CompUSA.

    Maybe if they would have had more locations to begin with, or better salespeople at all the ones I’ve been to, they would deserve to be open.

    I spit on poor customer service!