On December 31, 2005, my husband and I purchased a three-piece living room grouping from Regency Furniture's Brandywine (Headquarters) Store.
We were told that because we wanted the set covered in a different fabric, we would have to wait additional six-weeks. In February 2006, the furniture was delivered. We sent it back because it was damaged before it arrived and during the delivery attempt.
On January 17, 2006, our old living room set was taken away by the bulk trash contractors. We were without furniture to entertain guest for the Super Bowl, as we had planned. Therefore, we decided to have everyone over for Ester Dinner instead. By then, we figured we would have the new furniture.
On February 22, 2006, the long awaited furniture arrived. It was delivered in a white paneled delivery truck. There was no indication that it was a Regency Furniture delivery. The driver and his helper did not speak fluent English. They took our furniture off the truck and placed it on our lawn. It had rained the day before. None of the furniture was covered for protection at all.
They proceeded to turn the small sofa over onto its back. We noticed a large cut and hole in the dust cover on the bottom. It had been repaired with clear packing tape. There was dirt all over the bottom. The ottoman was the wrong color. The back of the loveseat was poorly constructed, nearly an inch out of alignment.
As the small sofa lay on the lawn, it soaked up water from the previous rain. I told (tried to) the delivery people to take it back because it was wet. They just looked at me and then gave me a cell phone to speak to some woman from the delivery department at Brandywine.
I told her that we did not want the furniture because it was not as ordered and that it had been damaged by the deliverymen. I could tell by her voice tone that she did not believe me, did not want to hear what I had to say, and wanted me to just take the furniture and speak with my sales person on Monday. I simply stated that I did not want what was delivered and that I was sending it back.
The woman on the phone spoke with one of the deliverymen. The men proceeded to put the furniture back on the truck. One of them lifted the sofa, that was soaking up the water, by one end and drug it across the grass and down our driveway back to the truck. The legs were jerking all the way.
We went back to the store and told Ahmed what had happened. He said he would fix it. He assured us that we were good customers and they (Regency) would make things right. Believing him, we purchased an entertainment center while waiting for the new order to be completed.
In March 2006, the second set of furniture was delivered. Again, it was not the right color, the ottoman was not covered in the fabric we ordered, and the whole set was dirty. It looked like it came off display. You could see the signs of hundreds of hands leaving soiled prints from toughing it. There was a wear line across the back of the long sofa, as if it had been rubbed against or too near a pole or short wall.
We went back to the Brandywine store and told them that the furniture was dirty and we wanted it removed. Again, Ahmed assured us that he would take care of it. He asked if we knew how much it would cost to clean it. We had no idea. We stated that cleaning it would not make up for the fact that it was the wrong color and not covered in the fabric on the original order. Besides, we paid nearly $5,000 for new furniture. I pushed for my original order.
He said he understood and would place the order himself because the sales person obviously made a mistake. He went on to say a few other unkind things about our sales person. He tried, but could not find our original order in the system, so he created a new one. Not wanting to cause a scene, we agreed to wait another six week for the furniture to arrive from the manufacturer again.
While there, we found the perfect Entertainment Center and ordered it. Ahmed had another sales person help us. That person keep trying to sale us an insurance policy to cover damage. We refused the offer. An agreement was made to deliver the Entertainment Center and remove the soiled furniture.
March 2006, the Entertainment center arrived, and Furniture shipment number two was removed. The Entertainment center was uncrated in the snow on our front lawn. Brought in to our home and assembled. They had to borrow a chair to stand on to complete the install. We thought that to be unprofessional. They make enough deliveries to know when to take a stepladder.
While removing the pillows, the delivery person dropped one and proceeded to kick it down our snow-covered drive to the back of the truck. They manhandled the long sofa down our long hallway to front door. It was stuck, so they pushed-pulled it hard. We heard a cracking sound. Again, they drug it back to the truck with legs wiggling all the way.
April 12, 2006, noticed yellow spots appearing on the Entertainment Center. It was the finish coming off, exposing the primer underneath. We decided to complain at the store. Once again Ahmed assured us that Regency would take care of the problem. He said that he would have the delivery people look at it when they made the next delivery.
In April, we went back to the Brandywine store and asked to cancel the whole order. We were told that we would have to take a store credit. Saddened, we went to a different Regency location to see if we could find other furniture. We, really, did not want other furniture. We wanted what we ordered originally.
The Largo store was under remodeling. The sales people were much much more friendly and open. We told them what we were going through with the Brandywine store. They suggested that we speak with Mr. Lee; and that he might be able to help.
As it turned out, Mr. Lee was the District Manager. He told us that everything could be fixed easily. We believe him. He gave us his office number and told us to call him direct.
When we tried to call, we were told that he was not available. We could tell by the tone in the woman's vice that she did not appreciate us calling on that line. She inquired as to how we got the number. We told her that we had spoken with Mr. Lee and he told us to call. She said, Call back later and hung-up.
One week after speaking with Mr. Lee, we went back to the Brandywine store and inquired about our furniture. Again, Ahmed assisted us. He said he would personally go to the back and check for our furniture. A long while later he returned, and stated that our furniture was in the back and when did we want to have it delivered. We agreed on May 2006 between 10:00am and 2:00pm. We did not care about the time as long as we could get the furniture. Ahmed stated that the ottoman would be delivered as soon as it arrived from the manufacturer.
On May 22, the third set of furniture was delivered. Again, it was not what we originally ordered. However, this time we accepted it. The ottoman was missing. I made a note of it on the delivery notice. We were tired of the whole mess. We have not had furniture since January 17th. We have not been able to entertain our family or friends. We have not been able to gather around and watch a movie together in months.
In June, we started to inquire about the ottoman. The Regency delivery department left a voice message, stating that our ottoman was in and to call for a delivery date and time. When I made the call, I was not allowed to make the delivery arrangements. The person answering the calls for delivery dates said I was a racist. He then stated that we would have to speak with Mr. Ahmed. He said he would give him my number and that he would call me about the delivery.
He young man said this because I stated that I wanted English speaking deliverymen because we only speak English and every delivery so far had been damaged. I also told him that the last delivery was still wrong and I wanted to make sure that when we spoke to the deliverymen they would understand, The grass is wet; please do not put our furniture there. Please do not drag my sofa, etc. and be understood. We do not see this request as an issue of racism. We are a Black couple and know racism in many forms.
Mr. Ahmed has not returned our calls. After that encounter, we no longer wish to speak with Regency personnel at the Brandywine store over the phone.
We still do not have the furniture we originally ordered in December 2005. We do have a set of furniture similar to what was on the showroom floor. The set is missing the ottoman and Regency has yet to call with a delivery date. We are sending a formal request via postal mail for an estimated delivery date.
We financed the purchases through CitiFinancial Retail Services on one of Regency's 24-month interest free programs at a cost of over $4,900.00, which we found out later included an insurance fee. We did not want to pay for insurance.
We explicitly stated that we did not wish to pay for cleaning or damage protection. We were told, by our sales person, that the service was included free of charge. He lied.