We’ve had a request from someone who noticed our ad on Gumtree (it’s a great way to promote a new site) to highlight an issue that they’ve had with Sterling Furniture. In particular this was the London Road branch in Tollcross. A customer had entered the store to look for two suites, which she found and was told by the sales assistant that these were unique to the Sterling group, and you wouldn’t find it in any other furniture store than that of Sterling (this in particular is important later on).
The customer decided to take the suites of the back of this (since there could be no price comparison with another store that also sold them) as well as two beds. During the time in which the order was being processed, time was short to get the items, and the sales team were specifically told ‘time is of the essence’. The sales woman at the time stated she knew what this meant, and agreed that the beds would be delivered by date X and the suites would be delivered by date Y. Due to there being two separate delivery dates, there would need to be two charges applied (again, this is important for later on).
As time marched on, it was clear that the beds weren’t going to meet their delivery time. When the customer phoned to discuss this with the store, the response was less than welcoming. The deputy manager at the time did state that whilst the store manager was off, the customer would be allowed to cancel the entire order since the terms of the agreement had been breached. Unfortunately, when the store manager, Scott Wilson, returned from holiday the response was that it was the customers fault that the order hadn’t been properly processed and that there was no grounds to cancel the order stating that the sales woman didn’t actually agree to ‘time is of the essence’ and that since it wasn’t in writing he accused the customer of being a liar as well as her son. Indeed, he said the reason why the beds were delayed was because that they were getting delivered the same time as the suites. If this was the case, then why were they charged two separate delivery charges for the items?
Whilst this was going on, the customer found that whilst shopping for a table that Forrest Furnishings actually sold the exact same suite that the customer ordered. The customer had therefore been missold these items in order to get sale. Initially Scott Wilson again called the customer a liar, and when escalated to head office, they conceded that the customer had been missold the items.
The customer was allowed to cancel since the orders still weren’t all ready, but they lost £500 of the deposit that they had paid. They were threatened by Scott Wilson that if they took the case to a small claims court then they would lose, look foolish and would have to pay all of the legal fees for Sterling (this would never happen). They were even prompted that a delivery driver would come to their house to collect the rest of the balance and then they would decided when to send out the furniture. What kind of reputable company would send out a delivery driver to collect money so that an order can be finalised?
I hope this incident has put people off of Sterling Furniture since it’s clear that they’re not a reputable company.