Acknowledging that skittish consumers are still unwilling to buy big-ticket items, Sears tomorrow plans to unveil a bold new guarantee: if you lose your job after charging a purchase worth $399 or more to your Sears card, the retailer will credit 1/12th of the purchase price to your account for each month you are unemployed. If you stay jobless for one year, the debt is entirely forgiven, and the appliance is yours to keep.
“This was born out of listening to our customers,” said Kevin Brown, chief marketing officer/home appliances. Customers were saying, “We’re just in a spot where we’re deferring major purchases due to our concern about our personal economy and the national economy.”
For the moment, the program will only apply to purchases made between July 6 and August 1.
We’re skeptical of these recession guarantees, which seem more like clever marketing than a fail-safe that consumers find useful. And since it’s Sears, we’d definitely want to see the fine print before believing anything.
Sears to modify payments if appliance buyers lose their jobs [The Chicago Tribune]