ACE Hardware ripoff

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Get this: the day after Thanksgiving, ACE Hardware had a big, advertised sale, and just about everything had mail-in rebates associated with it, making for lots of great deals (right). Thinking this would be similar to mail-in offers at other stores, I bought lots of the rebate goodies and carefully sent in my receipt and UPC symbols. Apparently I didn't read the tiny print, because ALL but ONE of my rebates was denied by ACE. I received an email saying "Household Limit Exceeded. Your rebate submission is invalid due to a limit of ONE rebate claim form per name, household, or address. We are sorry but only one submission will be allowed." If this info was anywhere in their advertisement, it was in VERY small print, AND the store clerks said nothing to the dozens of us who were obviously buying all of the rebated items. What crooks!! BOYCOTT ACE HARDWARE, they are deceivers extraordinaire!!!!!
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Bob wrote:

The big print give sit to you, and the fine print takes it away.
Charlie
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Very true! I just didn't expect ACE Hardware to try to slip something past everyone.

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the really sad part, ace has a hardware club card. if you bring something back there without a receipt, they can look it up on the computer. they already have all the information on what you bought. they have decided to make a 'rebate center' which im sure costs a pretty penny to operate. its stupid to have it all in a computer somewhere, then require you to go through a maze of bs to MAYBE get a rebate, even when you've done everything correctly. to make it worse, if you have done something wrong on the form, or forgot one receipt, or basically if they're just feeling cranky that day, they just toss it in the garbage. i was told this by an ace manager.
between you and me, after having more than a few problems with the ace rebate system, costing me at least 100 bucks, i took it upon myself to give myself a rebate one day
i like my local ace, i like the people, and they have decent sales. but the rebate system is a scam.
randy
wrote > There's a lesson in there.

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On Mon, 20 Dec 2004 14:28:04 -0700, "xrongor"

They do not usually own or operate the rebate centers - they are the fulfillment houses that pay most of the rebate offers you find in the stores. The cost of the service is derived from the number of rebates the fulfillment center assures the vendor they will reject!
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Never submitted an ACE rebate. But when I submitted a SAM's club rebate, I was asked to checked all the items on the rebate form with the receipt, and not submit each item seperately.
Bob wrote:

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Sam's Club and OfficeMax are the only two that I know of that do it this way. They are also the only two that you can count on to pay the rebate with no hassles as long as you submit as required.
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Bob writes:

Better yet, boycott rebate sellers. Stupid sales gimmick.
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Richard J Kinch wrote:

The sales gimmick I HATE the most are those damned checks I receive every week or so with contracts to sign up for some service or another on the back. I wonder how many people are dumb enough to cash them without bothering to read what's written above their endorsements?
I'm also not pleased with charities which send me checks for $2.50 or so with their appeals. It just seems tacky to me, particularly since I'm noticing that if I contribute to one, I'm quickly solicited by several other charities which the one I responded to sold my name to. It's enough to turn me Scroogeward.
Jeff
--
Jeffry Wisnia

(W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
  Click to see the full signature.
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Or (having just bought a place) the "offers" from HELOC (or whatever) places:
Pay to the order of JSH : Fifty Thousand Dollars.
Now there's a (huge) accident waiting to happen!
JSH
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I agree, just give me the "rebate" at the cash register. They are counting on people screwing up the application, not cashing the check on time (some have real short expiration dates) or just throwing the rebate away, not wanting to screw with it.
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All rebates are nothing but rip-offs. They make you jump through hoops and then still deny your claim, no matter how careful you are.
I have hated rebates for years. After Lowes denied my last one for 40 bucks on spurious grounds, I have sworn off ALL rebates, forever.
Walter The Happy Iconoclast www.rationality.net -

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I guess I am one of those stupid consumers: I do fill the rebates from time to time, and never keep track of which one I received check on. I believe I received most of those $10 or less rebates. But I did not receive those bigger rebates completely (wireless routers, adapters, etc. which requires mutiple rebate forms to fill on each product).
But in most cases I ask my daughter to fill the forms and cut the UPC, so I am not sure if she did those correctly.
Last time I bought some wireless router/adapter (Office Depot), they asked to send the forms to 3 different places for each item - so a total of 6 forms/envelops to fill and mail. I asked my daughter to fill the forms and get whatever rebate checks we receive.
Walter R. wrote:

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Maybe you should learn to read the rebates terms.
I've done several hundred rebates and my success rate is 99.8%.
Given a choice of a rebate for 3X or a price discount of X, I'll take the rebate any day of the week. (industry rebate redemption rates average 33%)
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In our area (CA) two stores, Costco and Fry's Electronics, offer product rebates where the rebate application auto-prints on the register reciept. Once you get home, you just register it online, and when you send the email, within seconds, it confirms the store you bought it at thru cross referencing database, then sends you a check to your home, usually within a week or two. Excellent service, and you don't have to search newspapers for coupons, they just show on the product shelf, and auto register upon leaving the check out line. I find this approach very fast, and there is no fine print to ponder.
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...

(paraphrase remaining...) ...followed by a bunch of stuff req'd to register it, albeit not physically mailing...
But wouldn't it be even simpler (on both ends) if they would just program their registers to ring up the discount in the first place?
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Ahh... but how would then know if you've bought one before? Only one rebate per household y'know!
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Duane Bozarth wrote:

The whole point of offering rebates is the knowledge that a large percentage of buyers will not redeem them. I agree that trying to increase that percentage by setting up "fine print" rules that allow them to reject rebates that are applied for is a crappy way to treat customers. There are enough people who lose their receipts, or simply forget to send them in.
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The entire underlying alleged purpose of rebates is by nature a scam. It doesn't take any analysis whatsoever. If the store dealer OR the manufacturer of a product wants to sell it to you "for less" ( the fraudulent sales pitch inherent in a rebate scheme), they would do it immediately at the check out counter. Once they require you to jump through hoops to get "your" "Lower Price" then the game is a scam, pure and simple.
This should become clear to anyone with less than a second of thought.
--James--
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I'm reading a lot of ignorance about why manufacturers do rebates. Note it's the manufacturer, not the retailer that gives the rebate. It is often a method for the manufacturer to lower the price of existing stock - that is stock that has already been transfered to the retailer. It is too late at that point to reduce the cost to the retailer because that transaction has already happened. So the manufacturer uses the rebate as an easy and flexible way to reduce the cost without messing with the pricing stuctuire to the retailer.
That is why the retailer does not give the discount. They are not giving the price reduction, it is the manufacturer. It is a manufacturer's marketing strategy, not the retailers.
Yes, I won't disagree that there are a percentage of purchasers who can't, don't or won't take advantage of the rebate and therefore the product can be advertised at a lower price (rebate) without actually giving the lower price. But as a general marketing strategy, it's purpose is not to hoodwink the customer, but as a way of discounting existing stock that has already been transfered (sold) to the retailer - as opposed to a different strategy of reducing the price by reducing the cost to the retailer.
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