Call Kurtis: How Could Home Depot Sell Me A Refrigerator That Didn’t Exist?

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A Sacramento woman bought a new fridge and was promised it would be delivered within a month.

But when that didn’t happen, she called Kurtis.

The day before her fridge was supposed to be delivered, Maytag told her, the fridge wasn’t even made yet.

So, how can it be sold in the first place?

“That’s the dinky little freezer,” Bernadette Grimes showed us.

Forced to borrow her dad’s mini fridge, Bernadette has been waiting a month for her Whirlpool refrigerator.

“Especially when the temperatures are 105, it’s excruciating. You have no ice,” said Bernadette.

No ice and often spoiled meat.

Bernadette paid Home Depot more than $1,400 back on June 5 and was told her fridge would arrive on July 2.

But the day before delivery, the manufacturer, Maytag, told her the refrigerator wasn’t made and it could be another two weeks, but that wasn’t a guarantee.

“I thought it was already made, I didn’t think they could sell a product that didn’t exist,” said Bernadette.

“What she went through was not normal,” said Marlene Cordry, President, The Friedman Group, a retail consultant.

Cordry says customers should be told whether an item is out of stock before buying it but it’s not always possible.

“The reality is that you have to sacrifice some level of customer service in exchange for the vast selection and the low price you get at a store like Home Depot,” said Cordry.

We asked Home Depot how could they sell something that didn’t exist?  They never explained that but said typically they know when inventory will be available but “in this case, that somehow didn’t work”.

We reached out to Maytag which said, “The backlog was due to a high consumer demand for this particular model in this area.”

— Elizabeth Stanula-Kuiken, spokesperson

After our call, neither Maytag nor Home Depot could say when they could get her that fridge.

Bernadette cancelled her order,  buying the same exact model from a mom and pop store.

“A refrigerator is not the end of the world but it’s been extremely inconvenient,” said Bernadette.

After we got involved, Home Depot offered up a loaner.   But she already found another refrigerator.

We should point out Bernadette never called Home Depot about this issue, she only spoke with Maytag.

If you have a problem with something you bought, I always recommend you start at the store for solutions.

More from Kurtis Ming
  • Home Depot Sells Woman Imaginary Refrigerator – Consumerist

    […] The customer received a call from Maytag on the day before the refrigerator was supposed to arrive. That’s not how it’s supposed to work, insists Home Depot. “The backlog was due to a high consumer demand for this particular model in this area,” a spokeswoman explained to CBS Sacramento’s ace consumer reporter Kurtis Ming. […]

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