Homebase customers – what you need to know

Homebase announced on 14 August 2018 that it will close 42 stores across the UK. They will be shut over the next 16 months in addition to the 17 which already closed their doors earlier in the year. As well as the job losses at stores, around 300 people have been made redundant at the company’s head office in Milton Keynes.

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Homebase gift vouchers

If you have gift vouchers for Homebase it would be wise to get them spent now. Why? Well it is likely that these 42 stores will close soon and others may well follow. You may well have to travel further to get them spent. Also, if the chain continues to have problems and closes altogether you will not be able to spend your gift vouchers at all.

Homebase returns

The same applies to having to deal with any returns. It may also be more difficult if the chain is in trouble to assert your legal rights, as it possible that stores will try and encourage you to take repairs and replacements rather than a refund. Remember that the Consumer Rights Act 2015 entitles you to a full refund up to 30 days from purchase for items not fit for purpose or not of satisfactory quality. The act applies to the company as a whole and not to a particular store.

The restructuring company Hilco, which bought the chain for £1 in May 2018 has confirmed that it is planning a Company Voluntary Arrangement. This is a formal deal between an insolvent business and its creditors by which the company seeks to keep going, often through drastic cost savings, such as closing stores.

The BBC article Homebase plans to close 42 stores and cut 1,500 jobs explains more about the background and what is happening with the chain.  Here’s a full list of the Homebase stores that will close following this most recent announcement.

 

Peter Kay cancelled shows – your rights

Earlier today Peter Kay announced on Twitter that he was cancelling his 18 month tour due to unforeseen family circumstances.

Your rights if you bought tickets
From Ticketmaster
Ticketmaster was the official vendor for the live arena tour. It usually refunds tickets automatically including any service charges and it will make the refund to the card you used for payment.

From a third party seller
StubHub has a FanProtect service so it will refund you the total cost of your order. Seatwave also offers a full refund for cancelled events. Some secondary agents belong to the Association of Secondary Ticket Agents (ASTA) therefore following a code of conduct which includes refunding the full amount in light of cancelled events. Other secondary sites are not members so you will need to check the site for their terms and conditions.

From social media sites
If you have bought from a Facebook individual/group or a ticket tout you don’t have any rights because the contractual rights for a refund lay with them. Your only chance is if you can trace them and request that they refund you.

Timescales
You should be refunded from a seller within 30 days but providers may set their own deadlines if overwhelmed. Ticketmaster has said it will refund within 15 days.

Other ways to get a refund
Credit card. If you paid more than £100 by credit card you will be able to claim from the credit card company using Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act

Paypal. You should be able to get a refund through their Buyer Protection scheme.

Debit card. You may be able to claim through Chargeback. Contact your bank regarding this voluntary scheme.

Telephone costs
Under the Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 traders cannot use a number that is charged at more than the basic rate for after sale enquiries. Numbers starting 084, 087, 090, 091 or 098 are non-geographic numbers. They have an Access Charge set by and paid to the benefit of the caller’s telephone provider and a Service Charge set by and paid to the benefit of the called party and their telecoms provider. They are banned for use in after sales customer services situations. If you have to ring one of these numbers ensure you get the cost of the call refunded. Please let me know in the comments if you have had to ring one of these numbers after sales in the comments below.

The Sun covered these costs in more detail. Peter Kay fans charged up to 62p per minute to call premium rate phone line to claim ticket refunds.

Administration costs
In theory you should get all he costs back but a third party seller may say that it still undertook the service and so is entitled to keep this amount. It is possible that this cost will be kept. Always check terms and conditions when using these sites, although you can try and argue unfair charges and contracts.

Consequential loss
Because there is a breach of contract (Consumer Rights Act 2015) you should be entitled to consequential loss such as travel costs or hotels that you may have booked. In this case there has been so much notice given that it is unlikely that you would have lost out on travel costs or not be able to get the costs of a hotel back. In the unlikely event that you have incurred other costs you should claim under the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

 

How to Complain: The Essential Consumer Guide to Getting Refunds, Redress and Results!

 

For more information, tips, advice, guidance and consumer laws explore the blog and GET THE BOOK! How To Complain: The ESSENTIAL Consumer Guide to Getting REFUNDS, Redress and RESULTS!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peter Kay cancelled shows Your Rights (1)