Consumerist reader Sam was in a bit of a pickle. He’d recently moved from Florida to Texas, where he’d bought a home with the aim of fixing it up. To help him in this effort, Sam’s family and friends had given him several thousand dollars worth of Home Deport gift cards. Problem is, Sam accidentally left those cards back in Florida. But since he had all the info for the cards, Home Depot said it would be no problem. Or wait, maybe it will be. Or maybe not.
After realizing he’d left the physical cards back in Florida, Sam called the Home Depot corporate customer service and asked if he would just be able to provide the cashier with the gift card numbers and PINs.
“I was told it would be fine,” he writes to Consumerist.
Sam even went to the store and tried it out. “I was able to purchase an item by just reading a text message to the
cashier with the number and PIN,” he explains.
So having the assurance of the customer service folks and the positive experience at the store, Sam had his contractor place a sizable order through the Depot’s pro desk, which came back with a bid of $8,000 for everything.
Sam accepted the bid hired all the sub-contractors he would need to begin the renovation and scheduled everything so folks would be there when he brought home his hefty haul from Home Depot.
“When I went to go pay for the order to get all the materials, the Home Depot manager refused to accept my gift card code because I didn’t have it in the store,” he writes, “even though I had been able to use it in the day before!”
So he called up the corporate customer service number again. They then contacted the store, where a different manager said she would accept the gift card numbers.
“However, when we tried for a second time, I was once AGAIN denied my purchase, even though she had JUST agreed to
He called the corporate customer service number again, but this time he couldn’t get anyone to actually help him, even though he’d twice been told that this would not be a problem.
Meanwhile, Sam is paying for contractors to do nothing.
In the end, the only way he could get his purchase in a timely fashion was to go home, place the order online for in-store pick-up, using the same gift card numbers and PINs that he’d been unable to use at the store.
The mix-up meant that Sam not only lost more than a day in labor costs to contractors who weren’t doing anything, he also lost the discount he’d received by having the Home Depot pro desk bid on the bulk purchase.
Adding insult to injury, after receiving the e-mail saying that everything was ready to be picked up, and driving back over to the store, Sam says, “There were items missing that were listed online as available and we even had to help them find and pull some items ourselves that they couldn’t find.”
Adds Sam, “This is apparently the experience that Home Depot provides when you try to spend over $8,000 in their store.”
We’ll be contacting Home Depot HQ to see if anyone can explain what may have happened in this case. If they respond, we will update.