Home Appliances Plus closes website after thousands of complaints

“It is alarming that while there are apparent difficulties in fulfilling orders, the number of complaints against Home Appliances Plus and the amounts of money they owe their customers continue to rise,” he said.

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Newcombe said the retail site operators had failed to cooperate fully with regulators to resolve complaints and stop taking orders while there was a backlog and unresolved complaints.

A spokeswoman for NSW Fair Trading said the public warning issued in WA was being shared with NSW consumers on social media.

She said consumers who have problems with delivery should file a chargeback with their credit card provider: “If a chargeback is not available or provided, NSW consumers should lodge a complaint with NSW Fair Trading.”

Contrary to the raving customer reviews on its website, Home Appliances Plus has taken first place in the NSW Fair Trading Complaints Register over the past five months, with the regulator receiving over 380 complaints.

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The majority of complaints relate to the delivery of goods and the timeliness of delivery.

Angry customers have also posted thousands of negative reviews online, accusing Home Appliances Plus of failing to deliver items purchased on its site and calling for the site to be shut down.

Home Appliances Plus is affiliated with Steel and Water Pty Ltd, a company incorporated in Tasmania in 2021. The retail site offered discounted household items, outdoor and sports equipment, children’s toys and clothing, and pet accessories.

The company did not respond to inquiries The Sun Messenger and The Sunday Age.

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The Sun Messenger In July it was revealed that the online retailer was under investigation by consumer protection agencies after a spate of complaints from angry customers. like Inderjeet Singh who said, “I will never buy from this company again, nor will I recommend anyone to buy.”

Victoria’s spokeswoman for shadow consumer affairs, Roma Britnell, said the state consumer protection agency was underfunded and “should have been on top”, warning the public about Home Appliances Plus.

“CAV plays a role in educating Victorians about corporate practices,” she said. “If things are serious enough to investigate, why not warn consumers about these organizations?”

The Consumer Action Law Center’s executive director, Gerard Brody, said a lack of resources is constraining the compliance and enforcement work of consumer protection agencies, “which is a prerequisite for effective consumer protection and a fair market”.

“In our experience, investigations by consumer protection agencies can take some time, but we want them to be quicker,” he said.

https://www.smh.com.au/business/consumer-affairs/disgruntled-shoppers-told-to-contact-regulators-after-online-retailer-shuts-down-website-20220930-p5bm6o.html?ref=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_source=rss_business Home Appliances Plus closes website after thousands of complaints

Brian Lowry

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