On the heels of a lackluster sales report during the holiday season, Best Buy has decided to eliminate restocking fees. Until recently, Best Buy charged customers 15% of the purchase price to restock an opened item. These returned electronics, if sold, usually feature a sales price of 10% off the regular price. It may be bold to offer this opinion, but a restocking fee makes sense as a deterrent for habitual returning. Even though it’s common in the industry — even consumer-friendly Amazon.com refunds only 85% of the purchase price of opened items, but it’s a policy that’s not seen as consumer friendly.
If you have returned an item to Best Buy any time after November 17 and were charged a restocking fee, talk to your store’s customer service department to get a refund. The new policy goes into effect for the future, but Best Buy is honoring requests for refunds for those who were charged the fee.
While I don’t always buy electronics from Best Buy, I always give them a chance to beat other store’s prices. I am often successful in negotiating a discount, especially when I’m willing to buy a product that is discontinued. Even in cases where I can’t convince the manager to offer a discount, they’ll usually throw in some free stuff, such as accessories.
Published or updated December 22, 2010. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.