On April 1, 2008, my father-in-law and my wife ordered and paid for a rocker recliner (SKU: 186126009 $401.74) from Sales Consultant, Eddie Elahi, at the Laurel Marlo Furniture Showroom. Upon check-out, they were told to call back on 4/11/08 to confirm its pickup date of 4/15/08 in Forestville.
Surprisingly, a day later, Wednesday (4/2/08), I received a call from Mr. Elahi telling me that they actually had the rocker recliner in stock now and I could pick it up next day on 4/3/08 anytime between 10AM and 6 PM. Taking 2 hours off work, on 4/4/08 Friday afternoon, I drove 22 miles from my house in Silver Spring to the Marlo Warehouse in Forestville.
Surprisingly, when I got there I was told by the lady behind the pickup desk that it was not ready for pickup! She told me the computer showed the pickup date was supposed to be 4/15/08. I told her that the sales rep. called and specifically told me that it was in stock and was ready to be picked up. She advised me to call Mr. Elahi, so I immediately called him at 301-419-3400 (ext. 3421) and left a voice mail inquiring about the pickup date. So I drove home empty handed and got stuck on 495 for an hour due to an overturned truck and trailer.
After arriving home, I called the Laurel Warehouse inquiring about the pickup date for the rocker recliner that I already paid for and received the same reply that it was not ready for pickup and was advised to contact Mr. Elahi. I then left two more voice mails on both Mr. Elahis phone at Marlo and his cell. A week passed and Mr. Elahi never returned any of my phone calls to explain why he misinformed me that the rocker recliner was ready for pickup. I still do not understand why Mr. Elahi gave me the false pick-up information (Aprils fool day?) that wasted 2 hours of my time/gas and why he never returned any of my phone calls to explain or apologize for the foul up.
A week had passed, on April 11, 2008 (Friday), I received a message from Marlo on my answering machine when I got home from work saying that the rocker recliner was ready for pickup and asked me to call to set up a pickup time. Next morning, April 12, 2008(Saturday), I called and was told that I could pick it up anytime before 6PM. So I drove, again, 22 miles with my wife and daughter to Forestsville. After checking in with the lady at the pickup desk, I waited 50 minutes (2:10PM 3PM) before they finally brought out the rocker recliner. During these 50 minutes, I had seen numerous people who arrived after me had their furniture loaded. There was absolutely no coordination between the lady that checked me in and the movers. In other words, there was no first come first served order at all. There was no number ticket or anything else. The movers simply brought out furniture in any order they pleased. They were also rude and unprofessional. In this respect, Marlo has a lot to learn from either Sears and CircuitCity in their pickup processes.
You may ask why I did not cancel my order after the first false pickup notification ordeal. I would have in a heartbeat if it was not because my father-in-law went in person and picked out the rocker recliner at the Laurel store. My father-in-law had been living with us for years and my wife and I learned that he was diagnosed with liver-cancer two weeks ago and that he only had 4 months to live. Two weeks ago he asked for a more comfortable recliner, so my wife drove him, who is 80 years old with difficult walking, to Marlo to pick out a recliner that he liked. He does not go out that much anymore, this time he went and picked the recliner. This may very well be the last big item that we purchased for him. Now you understand why I did not want to cancel the order.
Obviously, Marlo does not care about its customers since I filled out a feedback via their websites's Order Concerns webpage a week ago and it went unanswered. All I wanted was an explaination and possibly an apology from them, maybe that was too much to ask. I have to conclude that Marlo Furniture has the worst customer service I've ever experienced from the past 30 years dealing with hundreds of local and online retailers. With a service like this, I would be very surprised if they are still around 3 years from now.
Silver Spring, Maryland
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