I purchased (rent to own) a new Compaq Presario desktop computer system from Aaron's Sales & Lease Ownership located at 9051-1 West Broad St, Richmond VA. The computer was delivered to my home on Friday The monitor box was sealed but the cpu box was already open. I set up my new computer on my desk. It came with three months free AOL, and the disk was included, because it was not preinstalled on the computer. I proceeded to install AOL but the CD-RW drive did not work. The light came on but it couldn't read the disk. I tried to then install it manually by going to the control panel, add new programs. The drive still could not read the disk. I put in a music CD, and it did not play.
The computer came with a 1 year warranty from Compaq and an extended 60 day warranty from Aarons after the 1 year. I called Aarons and spoke to Vernon Clark who is the sales person that sold me the computer. He gave me the number to Compaq technical support to call, and told me to get a case number if the problem was not resolved. If they couldn't fix it to call him back, and he would give me a loaner computer until mine is fixed, so that I would not be without a computer.
I called Compaq support and stayed on the phone with them for about an hour. We did different things to see if we could fix the drive. The last thing we did was a system restore in case something happened it would fix any changes. If the computer was new, it shouldn't have any changes to it. When the system restore process was over, the background was different, and AOL and AOL broadband was on the computer. This told us that someone had this computer previously, and it was not new. Also the technical support guy from Compaq told me the warranty started 3 months ago, and I just purchased the computer 3 days ago.That gave me another warning it was used. The CD-RW drive could not be fixed, and needed to be replaced.
I called Vernon Clark back, and he said to bring in the computer, and he would give me a loaner. I pulled up to the front of the store and another sales guy took the computer out of my car, and carried it inside. I parked my car and when I came inside Vernon had put another computer in my box for me, and told me this was going to be my permanent merchandise exchange. I wouldn't have to make another trip. He said the computer was the same as the one I had, and it was also new. He gave the paperwork that showed the cpu I turned in, and the one it was switched with. He signed the copy and gave to me. I signed a copy for the files. He also told me the same problem have happened a couple of times this week with previous customers. This also made me suspicious.
When I came home I plugged in the computer. I went to my documents and to my surprise it had twenty-two personal documents there. If this was a new computer it wouldn't have any documents on it. I opened one of the documents and it was a females' financial aid papers for college. The application had tons of personal information in it. It included her full name, address, phone, social security number, driver's license number, parent's information, previous tax year information. I was so shocked and upset. I immediately called Aarons to tell Vernon, but he was unloading a truck and I couldn't wait for him to return my call.
I spoke to the sales lady that answered the phone named Katheryn.I told her the situation and she asked me to read the number off the computer that was on a sticker. There was no sticker but the number was hand written on the computer on the bottom with a black marker which she said was their inventory number. She typed the number into the computer, and told me this was a used computer and it came from another store. She apologized and told me she don't know why he sold me a used computer, and why that information was still on it. She said they usually refurbish the computers before they are resold to insure everything is working and everything is restored to the original settings. She was not sure of the procedure they followed to do this. She asked me what I wanted to do, and I told her at this point, I don't know. She said she understands and she will have the manager Dushon Brown to call me back. All of this happened on Friday.
Sat after 2pm I still had not heard from anyone at Aaron's, so I go to the store to speak to them in person. Vernon said he is sorry he didn't know it was used and he will give me a brand new computer, and call it the day. I was like no we are not going to call it a day I need to talk to the Manager. He told me she was with a customer, and she will be right with me. He also told me he has informed her of what happened. She came to the sales counter, and asked could she help me. I told her that I think we need to go behind closed doors to talk about this, she said ok real sarcastically. She acted as though this was no big deal.
Instead of coming in getting right to the core of the problem I wanted to find out some detail on company procedure. I asked was there a procedure that they follow when they get a computer back from someone before they resell it. She said they just close it out. (What that means I don't know). She would not give me any helpful information to help me to understand how this all happened. We were sitting around a table; she didn't take notes or anything. The only thing she said was that Vernon didn't know that the computer was used. She said she closed it, out so she was the only one who knew. Which brings in the question what is the procedure do they have in place to make sure this kind of thing don't happen? I am sure this kind of business gets computers back all the time. So I know they do know what to do from there. I know DeShawn Brown was trying to cover for Vernon. You can't cover up the facts. DeShawn Brown asked me did I want a new computer, or did I want to keep the one I have. She said if I wanted to keep the one I have I could bring it in and they would delete everything off of it.
Vernon tried to sell me a used computer, and charge me for a new computer was one problem. The second problem was the computer with personal information on it. The world today is not the same as it was years ago when people had morals and values in them. Aaron's is a rent to own store that does no credit check. Everyone is approved to rent from them. We hear every day about identity theft, murders, stalkers, credit card fraud. If this computer was given to the wrong person they could get credit cards, apply for loans or anything they wanted in this persons name. They have different kinds of spyware on computers to steal your personal information, and Aaron's just give people computers without checking them out. This may be a one time thing, but what if its not. I do understand consumers should delete there personal information before turning it back in, but the company have a responsibility also to the consumers to protect their privacy. The way I look at it this could have been my information or yours given to a serial killer, identity theft person or someone in need of money and want to use your credit. All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good people sit back and do nothing about it.
The following is the mission statement for Aaron's.
We promise your total satisfaction by always providing the highest level of service, a large selection of name brand products and the guaranteed lowest price.
We will grow Aaron's into the premier, market-dominant company in our industry, recognized by our customers and peers, as the standard bearer of integrity, honesty and fairness by...
Establishing superior operating standards
Executing in detail our proven systems, promise and program
Ensuring we meet our responsibilities to shareholders, customers and associates
Exporting new opportunities
Embracing each community by giving back to its citizens.
Corporate offices don't know what is going on at local levels if the customers don't give feedback, the good and the bad. After reviewing their promise, they have failed me, and the other parties involved. Their mission is to be recognized by as the standard bearer of integrity, honesty and fairness. That is not happening at the West Broad location as stated above.
Why did the sales person try to sell me a used computer the 1st time? Why did he try to sell me a computer the 2nd time? Why did she look in the system and see the computer was used but the manager and the sales person swear he didn't know it was used? What if I was a criminal? I didn't have to hack anyone computer, follow anyone, steal their purse or anything. They just gave me all the information I need to get a loan, credit card and everything else I wanted, on a silver platter. This is unacceptable, and telling me you are sorry will not justify what happened here.
I have a 15 monitor already at home. I didn't need another one the same size, but Vernon told me the computer came as a set and he couldn't break it up. DuShon Brown agreed to take back the monitor since I didn't need it. They do this from time to time but try to sell everything as a package. She then had to adjust the price of the cpu. She charged me for a used one instead of a new computer which was only a 9 dollar difference. Nine dollars does not justify what has happened.
My mother had a similar experience with the Midlothian location also in Richmond Virginia. After she paid her computer off it crashed. She called DELL. They told her the computer belonged to someone else in Florida. They purchased the computer 1 year prior to her having it. They sold her the computer and told her it was NEW. She is not computer literate so she didn't find out until she had problems with it.
They are the cheapest rental company in Richmond, so I stepped out on faith to do business with them. I also recommend a friend who came in later that day, and purchased a laptop from them, and this is how I was treated. They didn't show me any type of remorse, sympathy, professionalism or anything of the sort.
I believe in customer satisfaction. Without us they wouldn't have a job. Sometimes the customer isn't always right, but they need to treat that customer with respect, and let them know that they are appreciated. In this case I know that I am right saying that Vernon tried to get over on me twice and his manager tried to cover for him. They wanted me just to forget about it like its no big deal. If I don't do or say anything about this, they will continue to do it to others and it's not right.
If the manager would have been professional, admitted that they were wrong, and assured me this is not the kind of thing that goes on at their facility, I would have felt differently about the company and the situation. Also she should have given me steps that she would take to see why this happened, and given me more assurance that this would not happen again. As of now I feel it will happen again and again. This is very serious, and needs to be addressed.
I am going back to school, and I feel that the least they can do is take the used computer back, give me a brand new computer, with a monitor, free of charge. By doing this, they will show me that they are truly sorry for trying to use me, and for their negligence on giving me a computer with personal information on it. This will open their eyes to being loyal to their customers, and they will take their individual jobs more seriously. I hope they do appreciate the fact that I did let them know what happened, and they will look further into what happened at store level and correct, or get rid of the problem.
I still had the used computer until 2 days ago.In reality I had the computer since the end of August. As a company they should have picked up the computer, or asked to bring it in immediately. It still had the females' information on the computer as well as all other information she may have saved to the hard drive. They didn't checked it at all, so they don't know if it has any viruses or if any programs are missing. Yet, they are still looking for me to pay on it every two weeks until it is paid off in twelve months. I shouldn't have to pay for someone else mistakes.
I finally got in touch with a news channel in the area. WWBT 12. They have a program called 12 on your side where they deal with counsumer issues. They came to my house interviewed me and looked at the paperwork that came with the computer. Everything said NEW not used or refirbrished. They went to the lady's house whom the information belonged to, they were pissed. Then they went to Aaron's and spoke with the manager (Dushon. She stated they do erase information off of the computers before reselling. When asked why was this information on mine, she had NOTHING ELSE TO SAY.
Thats when finally the district manager contacted me wanting to swap out the computer before 530pm the same day. Let me remind you the segment was going to air at 6pm and it was already 4pm. I called him the next day and he wanted to give me another computer. Now this is the 3rd computer I have received. This one is NEW. But.... what about the information left on the other computer. If i don't pay my bill will they erase my information or just sell it to the next person. He appoligized but you could tell it was fake. When I went to the store to pick up the 3rd computer the manager didn't appoligize, thank me for my business or anything. She acted like nothing ever happened.
They told the news channel that they gave me the computer half off. If you take 50% off the original price, thats half off. If you take something back, off course I am not going to pay for it. Nine dollars off is not half price off of the computer. Since they said they gave me the computer for half off, they need to give me the monitor. FREE>
I WANT JUSTICE AND FOR THEM TO LIVE UP TO THEIR WORD ......
Is this a company you want to do business with? Is this a company you want in your neighborhood? If you are a business in the same area, is this how you want them to treat your customers. What happened to ethics, social responsibility to your customers or just being fair.
I am in college, the price is cheaper than the other rental companies, thats the only reason I am still with them. I WILL CONTINUE TO MAKE MY STAND UNTIL JUSTICE IS HAS BEEN DONE. IF I DO DECIDE TO GO TO ANOTHER COMPANY I WILL DELETE THE HARD DRIVE INFORMATION MYSELF.
PLEASE DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH AARON'S, ANY LOCATION ESPECIALLY RICHMOND. THERE ARE RIP OFF REPORTS FOR LOTS OF LOCATIONS. THIS COMPANY IS OUT FOR THE MONEY WITH NO CONCERN FOR YOUR PRIVACY.
Vernon Clark now has his own store....THE CYCLE IS CONTINUING IN RICHMOND.
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