direct buy hidden upcharges here and you could wait forever anaheim hills, California
Allright, I got SUCKERED in to buying into this club before my husband and I got married. I was 23 years old. I bought in knowing we would be fixing up the house he had just bought. The first thing I didn't like was the high pressure tactics used to sell us on this membership. If something is a good thing, you don't need to sell on the spot and can allow comparison shopping. I got caught up int he pitch because we only had to pay $3500 instead of 5 grand and I just knew we would be doing a ton to the house over the course of the next 10 years.
The paperwork they have you sign indicates with couples that if there is a dissolution of marriage, the one who signs on a particular line will control the membership-the salesman told us my husband should sign there, not me-though I was the one paying for the membership and he knew we were only engaged at the time. I felt really peeved and I'm not even a feminist. Irregardless I paid my down payment that night and started my financing. I DID NOT like that within the first month they sold my payments to another agency, but I DID like that the interest was only 2% non adjustable. I can deal with that. I still feel their immediate switch was underhanded though.
I joined my club in 2009 right when the market was coming to a complete stand still. My location's hours changed dramatically so I was always confused as to when they would be open. I was told I could order Christmas gifts during their extended holiday hours, but nobody ever mentioned that I would be waiting up to 6 weeks on average for merchandise until after I became a member. In November, ordering Christmas gifts was a total gamble. That sucked. When I did order merchandise they charged Shipping and Handling that seemed very high and was non negotiable... here is the kicker though, it varies in percentage per merchant and in many cases, you still pick up the item from your direct buy's warehouse offsite.
I think my biggest issue other than the high shipping and handling which almost or does obliterate your savings is that my Direct buy doesn't inform me if something is on back order, I just get to wait out the entire period of time the item can be expected to arrive and then in a few more days I call their office, maybe get through to someone and after a call back the next day I find out the item has been back ordered. I rarely get an ETA on back orders, in fact I ordered my husband's shoes from them 3 months in advance for our wedding as well as his groom's men's shoes and also the ring bearer's shoes and found out a month later they were back ordered. We weren't given an ETA or told if they were discontinued, we waited another month and a week until we had to cancel and buy shoes somewhere else. I don't think I've ever gotten an item that was back ordered. I have to cancel my orders instead. At least their refund process is quick.
Its just sad when I find better prices elsewhere too. I ordered my washer and dryer duo from an online retailer, had no tax or shipping fees and got an insane deal nobody else could beat & received them in 2 weeks from NY!
Direct buy DOES have amazing savings on flooring and tile though, through local vendors. I buy all my tile, slate flooring, carpet, wood flooring and so on from them without price shopping anymore because I've researched things and nobody can beat those prices at retail places. I also have purchased some lamps and a few pieces of high end furniture that I feel were affordable for their high quality (solid wood construction, fantastic finish/hardware). But again, the extra shipping and handling is a pain and the usual long wait is so tedious.
If you don't intend to spend a ton on big projects right away and you don't want to do a lot of extra footwork, look through endless catalogs without any idea what each one has inside, don't like waiting indefinitely and want good follow through, then don't join. You can get appliances, cabinetry, electronics, windows and some other things cheaper elsewhere and get them sooner.