Disapproving Home Improvement: A Man’s Tale

 

About a year ago we had a minor flood.  The line feeding hot water to a jacuzzi tub in my master bath decided to leak.  The tub, made of cultured marble, had once been repaired and the repair failed.  Cultured marble, we found out, is difficult if not impossible, to repair.  We had plans to replace the tub, but contemplating a new tub led to thoughts of replacing our aged shower, then redoing our entire master bath, and quickly, the project became so complex and painful, the tub became a place to put a presorted laundry hamper and we forgot about it.  Then, ten years later, the leak.

I never liked that tub.

The leak was just a pin hole, but overnight, it made up for its size with amazing persistence.  The insurance company rushed in with a remediation team and within a few days, the shower, tub, surrounding drywall and flooring, and the ceiling below, were demolished and the debris hauled off.  For weeks, blowers roared behind flapping plastic partitions.  A technician made daily inspections, testing the sills and subfloor for wetness and mold.  One by one, the blowers were removed until they were gone.  The insurance company sent us a settlement.  I pointed out that they had factored our deductible into their figures twice.  They sent a correction, and perhaps as a matter of procedure or out of guilt, added significantly to the original settlement even though we’d not complained.

We expanded the project to a complete rehab of the master bath.  There was never a thought of calling a contractor.  I would handle the project myself, bringing in skilled subs as needed.  I got numbers from plumbers, drywall guys, flooring guys.  I let my wife decide on plumbing fixtures, lighting, etc.

In late 2020, we ordered a stand-alone tub from a major retailer.  Literally within minutes of that online order, we were notified it would be delayed.  Then it was delayed again.  And again.  I was told to call for more information and was given a ship date.  That was in May.  Delivery was rescheduled for late July.  I called in late July.  The order would have to be canceled.  The retailer no longer carried that brand.

This story was repeated over and over.  Faucets – backordered, then discontinued.  Sinks, not available.  Toilets, no longer manufactured.  Shower pan – not currently available in our configuration.  We charged forward, found alternatives.  My garage is filled with boxes of stuff and my bathroom is still a gutted mess.

I now have two stand-alone tubs.  Something got crossed up and two arrived.

In the meantime, I have inspected every single granite, quartzite, marble, quartz, and limestone slab available in the Phoenix market (and many, more than once.)  This would be for the counters, of course.  I never knew that this would be quite so challenging.  As a rock hound, I pretty much love them all.  But my lovely wife, not so much.  I’m hopeful, now that all the required fixtures sit sweltering in my garage, that the great stone search will soon come to a close.

But just in case you wonder whether or not COVID has really damaged our economy, let me tell you, it has.  Tasks that were once just difficult, are now herculean.  Home improvement projects take not months, but years.  And have you tried to buy a car lately?  (I have.)  The dealers have to sell something, so new car lots are either empty or filled with overpriced used cars and trucks.  The auto manufacturers face the same problems I face with my master bath rehab.  Parts aren’t available.  Materials are scarce.  Production lines can barely be kept operating.  Inventory is now an archaic word.

This is madness.

I have good news though.  If you are looking for a nice stand-alone soaker tub (they are all the rage these days) I have one available for immediate delivery.  Lock in your price now!  Otherwise, good luck with that.

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  1. Phil Turmel Coolidge
    Phil Turmel
    @PhilTurmel

    My commercial landlord is also a custom home-builder.  He is super-stressed right now with all of the difficulties getting material to the worksite.  And dealing with less-than-sympathetic customers.

    Glad I’m not in that line of work.

    • #1
  2. Dave of Barsham Member
    Dave of Barsham
    @LesserSonofBarsham

    It’s sneaking into the IT market a bit too, though it seems a bit more random.

    • #2
  3. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    We built on a slab on grade to avoid those kinds of problems.

    • #3
  4. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    Phil Turmel (View Comment):

    My commercial landlord is also a custom home-builder. He is super-stressed right now with all of the difficulties getting material to the worksite. And dealing with less-than-sympathetic customers.

    We’re putting a line in our proposals that our ability to meet schedules is dependent on our ability to get materials.  Rebar and wire mesh are becoming hard to get.

    • #4
  5. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Phil Turmel (View Comment):

    My commercial landlord is also a custom home-builder. He is super-stressed right now with all of the difficulties getting material to the worksite. And dealing with less-than-sympathetic customers.

    We’re putting a line in our proposals that our ability to meet schedules is dependent on our ability to get materials. Rebar and wire mesh are becoming hard to get.

    Maybe contractors are starting to put more rebar etc in their buildings, so they don’t collapse quite so much.

    • #5
  6. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Doug Kimball: I have good news though.  If you are looking for a nice stand-alone soaker tub (they are all the rage these days) I have one available for immediate delivery. 

    If they sent you two by mistake and only charged for one, send one back for a refund and use the other.

    • #6
  7. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    Last January I read an excellent book about this supply-chain problem. It was written by the economists Jonathan Byrnes and John Wass. The title Choose Your Customer was very weak in terms of describing the content. It actually offers strategies for companies in how to deal with this solvency-threatening problem.

    I feel so sorry for businesses–their owners and managers. Every day for the past two years, they have woken up to think, “What now? What terrible problem do I have to solve today?”

    They are the unsung heroes of this pandemic. They are singularly responsible for the lack of depravation in this country with the “lockdowns” and often ridiculous constraints the government has imposed on them.

    • #7
  8. Nohaaj Coolidge
    Nohaaj
    @Nohaaj

    I predict inflation in double digits within 9-12 months. These supply chain issues, coupled with gubments paying people to not produce, is a veritable Jimmy Carteresque inflation timebomb.  We are already halfway there, with recent inflation pegged at over 5%.  Argentina, here we are…

    • #8
  9. Doug Kimball Thatcher
    Doug Kimball
    @DougKimball

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Doug Kimball: I have good news though. If you are looking for a nice stand-alone soaker tub (they are all the rage these days) I have one available for immediate delivery.

    If they sent you two by mistake and only charged for one, send one back for a refund and use the other.

    I wish.  Both charges showed up on my Visa card, alas.  Prices have since risen, so I might be able to make a couple hundred bucks, though.  The reseller wants a 20% restocking fee for a return.  Ugh.

    • #9
  10. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Phil Turmel (View Comment):

    My commercial landlord is also a custom home-builder. He is super-stressed right now with all of the difficulties getting material to the worksite. And dealing with less-than-sympathetic customers.

    We’re putting a line in our proposals that our ability to meet schedules is dependent on our ability to get materials. Rebar and wire mesh are becoming hard to get.

    Maybe contractors are starting to put more rebar etc in their buildings, so they don’t collapse quite so much.

    Contractors don’t decide how much rebar to put into buildings; engineers do that.

    • #10
  11. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Doug Kimball (View Comment):

    I wish. Both charges showed up on my Visa card, alas. Prices have since risen, so I might be able to make a couple hundred bucks, though. The reseller wants a 20% restocking fee for a return. Ugh.

    That’s unfortunate.  I’ve occasionally benefited from ignorant/lazy warehouse people, although it never amounted to much money.  The first time I recall, was a paper tray for my laser printer.  The warehouse person grabbed a box off the shelf and shipped it to me, not realizing it was a CASE of paper trays, not just one: each individually boxed inside.  So I got 6 of them, paid for 1.  That wasn’t a big bonus for me even though they were like $40 to $60 each, because I didn’t need that many and they weren’t a common model so nobody wanted to buy the extras.

    Another time was ordering a pair of scissor-handle-like tweezers from Amazon, the kind that come shrink-wrapped to a piece of cardboard like hanging in stores.  The warehouse person sent me a BOX of them, which had like 6 or 8 or 10 sets.  That was convenient for me, but again not a financial windfall since they didn’t cost that much either.

    The most recent example, at my new place I’m installing a kitchen stove vent hood, that vents to outside.  This place never had that before.  And besides having to cut through a couple layers of drywall inside the kitchen, the outside wall has two layers of stucco (cement over wire).  I got a simpler hole saw (two spinning knife-blades with spacing adjustable in 1/4″ increments from about 3″ to 7″) for the holes in the cabinet that the hood mounts under, and the drywall.  I knew the stucco would be tougher, so I ordered a Milwaukee “Hole-Dozer” 6″ hole saw from Home Depot.  About $45 plus tax, and free shipping.

    Apparently the store-stocking packaging at the warehouse has TWO of them together, wrapped in dark plastic so it’s not immediately obvious that there are TWO inside.  And they must ship packages of two at a time, to the stores for unwrapping and putting out separately on the store shelf.

    But if you’re a warehouse person who doesn’t realize that a “hole saw” should be ROUND not… oblong… you just grab what’s on the shelf and ship it out.

    So I paid for one, and got two.  Sadly it’s useless on this stucco, so I’m returning one for a refund.  The second one, which wound up being free, goes in my tool set for possible future use.

    It made a lot of noise, but useless for cutting.  So I drilled about 40 small holes on each side, in a circle pattern (the hole saw scratched the paint in a nice circle pattern for me), pried out the cement material, and snipped the wires.

     

    • #11
  12. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    My wife bought a case of scotch, but the store only charged her for a bottle.  We made up the difference the next time she was there.

    • #12
  13. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    My wife bought a case of scotch, but the store only charged her for a bottle. We made up the difference the next time she was there.

    Now that’s a good deal!  Best I’ve done there is get 14 candy bars but they only scanned/charged one.

    • #13
  14. iWe Coolidge
    iWe
    @iWe

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Maybe contractors are starting to put more rebar etc in their buildings, so they don’t collapse quite so much.

    Contractors don’t decide how much rebar to put into buildings; engineers do that.

    The evidence is that in Florida there was much less rebar installed than was specified…

    • #14
  15. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    iWe (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    Maybe contractors are starting to put more rebar etc in their buildings, so they don’t collapse quite so much.

    Contractors don’t decide how much rebar to put into buildings; engineers do that.

    The evidence is that in Florida there was much less rebar installed than was specified…

    That’s just crooked contractors.  Usually inspectors catch that sort of thing.

    • #15
  16. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    I was in the plumbing supply business, specializing in showroom fixtures. I have to leave now but will re-join later with a comment.

    • #16
  17. EJHill Podcaster
    EJHill
    @EJHill

    I feel your pain.

    • #17
  18. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Actually, I do have a more “successful” (financially) recent example.

    The installation instructions that came with the GE stove vent hood I bought for the kitchen, on Page 9 specify that the matching holes in the cabinet that the hood attaches to, are centered 3 3/4″ from the back edge.  So that’s where I made them.

    Another diagram on page 14, specifies 4 1/4″.  Which is actually where they should be.

    On the basis that their contradictory instructions caused me to ruin a brand new cabinet costing $94 plus tax at Home Depot, GE Appliances sent me a check for $100.

    But I still used the original cabinet, and their $100 will pay for a second cabinet to go next to it.  :-)  (No holes needed for that one.)

    • #18
  19. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Actually, I do have a more “successful” (financially) recent example.

    The installation instructions that came with the GE stove vent hood I bought for the kitchen, on Page 9 specify that the matching holes in the cabinet that the hood attaches to, are centered 3 3/4″ from the back edge. So that’s where I made them.

    Another diagram on page 14, specifies 4 1/4″. Which is actually where they should be.

    On the basis that their contradictory instructions caused me to ruin a brand new cabinet costing $94 plus tax at Home Depot, GE Appliances sent me a check for $100.

    But I still used the original cabinet, and their $100 will pay for a second cabinet to go next to it. :-) (No holes needed for that one.)

    Welcome to the world of blueprint reading.

    • #19
  20. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Actually, I do have a more “successful” (financially) recent example.

    The installation instructions that came with the GE stove vent hood I bought for the kitchen, on Page 9 specify that the matching holes in the cabinet that the hood attaches to, are centered 3 3/4″ from the back edge. So that’s where I made them.

    Another diagram on page 14, specifies 4 1/4″. Which is actually where they should be.

    On the basis that their contradictory instructions caused me to ruin a brand new cabinet costing $94 plus tax at Home Depot, GE Appliances sent me a check for $100.

    But I still used the original cabinet, and their $100 will pay for a second cabinet to go next to it. :-) (No holes needed for that one.)

    Welcome to the world of blueprint reading.

    Of course, it’s far from a new experience for me.  As a 9th grader – that would be 1973, I suppose – and knowing that the High School I would be going to the following year (connected buildings, actually) had a computer (yes, ONE computer, for the whole school, and it was not in the office!  In the office they used typewriters) I searched the used book stores and found a DEC Small Computer Handbook from 1967 dealing with the PDP-8 series.  (The High School had a PDP-8/L.)  Based on that book, I started writing some programs to try when I got the chance.  As a result, I learned an important lesson:  About half of what I needed to know to actually write good programs, wasn’t in the manual; and about half of what WAS in the manual, was at least partly wrong.

    • #20
  21. Randy Webster Member
    Randy Webster
    @RandyWebster

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Actually, I do have a more “successful” (financially) recent example.

    The installation instructions that came with the GE stove vent hood I bought for the kitchen, on Page 9 specify that the matching holes in the cabinet that the hood attaches to, are centered 3 3/4″ from the back edge. So that’s where I made them.

    Another diagram on page 14, specifies 4 1/4″. Which is actually where they should be.

    On the basis that their contradictory instructions caused me to ruin a brand new cabinet costing $94 plus tax at Home Depot, GE Appliances sent me a check for $100.

    But I still used the original cabinet, and their $100 will pay for a second cabinet to go next to it. :-) (No holes needed for that one.)

    Welcome to the world of blueprint reading.

    Of course, it’s far from a new experience for me. As a 9th grader – that would be 1973, I suppose – and knowing that the High School I would be going to the following year (connected buildings, actually) had a computer (yes, ONE computer, for the whole school, and it was not in the office! In the office they used typewriters) I searched the used book stores and found a DEC Small Computer Handbook from 1967 dealing with the PDP-8 series. (The High School had a PDP-8/L.) Based on that book, I started writing some programs to try when I got the chance. As a result, I learned an important lesson: About half of what I needed to know to actually write good programs, wasn’t in the manual; and about half of what WAS in the manual, was at least partly wrong.

    I’m semi-retired now, but I used to look at blueprints all day every day.  It surprises me how many mistakes make it through the machine.  My favorite was in the specs:  Only put the second coat of sealer on the areas that received the first coat.

    • #21
  22. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Randy Webster (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    Actually, I do have a more “successful” (financially) recent example.

    The installation instructions that came with the GE stove vent hood I bought for the kitchen, on Page 9 specify that the matching holes in the cabinet that the hood attaches to, are centered 3 3/4″ from the back edge. So that’s where I made them.

    Another diagram on page 14, specifies 4 1/4″. Which is actually where they should be.

    On the basis that their contradictory instructions caused me to ruin a brand new cabinet costing $94 plus tax at Home Depot, GE Appliances sent me a check for $100.

    But I still used the original cabinet, and their $100 will pay for a second cabinet to go next to it. :-) (No holes needed for that one.)

    Welcome to the world of blueprint reading.

    Of course, it’s far from a new experience for me. As a 9th grader – that would be 1973, I suppose – and knowing that the High School I would be going to the following year (connected buildings, actually) had a computer (yes, ONE computer, for the whole school, and it was not in the office! In the office they used typewriters) I searched the used book stores and found a DEC Small Computer Handbook from 1967 dealing with the PDP-8 series. (The High School had a PDP-8/L.) Based on that book, I started writing some programs to try when I got the chance. As a result, I learned an important lesson: About half of what I needed to know to actually write good programs, wasn’t in the manual; and about half of what WAS in the manual, was at least partly wrong.

    I’m semi-retired now, but I used to look at blueprints all day every day. It surprises me how many mistakes make it through the machine. My favorite was in the specs: Only put the second coat of sealer on the areas that received the first coat.

    Did you ever see “Andy Richter Controls The Universe?”  His character is working at an engineering/design place, I imagine there were some additional jokes so obscure that even I didn’t get them.

    Only watch the first couple minutes of this version, it’s “zoomed” but the other version omits the very start which is important:

     

     

     

    Then switch to this:

     

     

     

    Followed by this:

     

    • #22
  23. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Isn’t Irene Molloy wonderful?  Here’s more:

     

     

     

    • #23
  24. Captain French Moderator
    Captain French
    @AlFrench

    My daughter’s oven broke, so she went to the appliance store to buy order a new one. Delivery date is January.

    Guess where we are not doing thanksgiving this year?

    • #24
  25. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    Captain French (View Comment):

    My daughter’s oven broke, so she went to the appliance store to buy order a new one. Delivery date is January.

    Guess where we are not doing thanksgiving this year?

    That may change.  I’ve been seeing online-ordering dates of two weeks out, and then 3 weeks out, and then 4… and then suddenly, maybe a week later, it’s already in stock and ready to order.

    • #25
  26. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    I have been out of the business for 7 years, having retired in 2014. My wife remained a salesman for the largest plumbing supply company in the USA for another 5 years after I retired. We both were retired when the pandemic hit. Our contacts in the business (contractor customers) never slowed down. It was odd, to me,  with so many people’s jobs “on hold”, that remodeling and new construction would remain as busy as ever. But eventually the chink in the supply chains must have caught up with the surprisingly vigorous demand. I recently ordered a new range for our kitchen from Nebraska Furniture Mart. We are in the process of waiting several months for the appliance to arrive. I hope that is all it takes. The best advice I could give in this situation is pretty much the same advice I gave back when everything was flowing fairly smoothly. That is, plan ahead. Don’t tear everything out and then start ordering your fixtures and appliances. Doug had no choice. The water damage was extreme. But that is a unique situation. I have remodeled my house seven times. We plan thoroughly and purchase all the needed product in advance of starting the project. That also helps the installers. Having the product during the early stages of construction can help them to better understand what they will need to install it later.

    When it comes to receiving overages on orders, I encourage treating them as you would an underage. It’s pretty simple, if you receive more than you paid for, return it. If you receive less, expect to get more product or a refund. Taking advantage of others errors is, simply put, stealing.

    • #26
  27. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    cdor (View Comment):

    I have been out of the business for 7 years, having retired in 2014. My wife remained a salesman for the largest plumbing supply company in the USA for another 5 years after I retired. We both were retired when the pandemic hit. Our contacts in the business (contractor customers) never slowed down. It was odd, to me, with so many people’s jobs “on hold”, that remodeling and new construction would remain as busy as ever. But eventually the chink in the supply chains must have caught up with the surprisingly vigorous demand. I recently ordered a new range for our kitchen from Nebraska Furniture Mart. We are in the process of waiting several months for the appliance to arrive. I hope that is all it takes. The best advice I could give in this situation is pretty much the same advice I gave back when everything was flowing fairly smoothly. That is, plan ahead. Don’t tear everything out and then start ordering your fixtures and appliances. Doug had no choice. The water damage was extreme. But that is a unique situation. I have remodeled my house seven times. We plan thoroughly and purchase all the needed product in advance of starting the project. That also helps the installers. Having the product during the early stages of construction can help them to better understand what they will need to install it later.

    When it comes to receiving overages on orders, I encourage treating them as you would an underage. It’s pretty simple, if you receive more than you paid for, return it. If you receive less, expect to get more product or a refund. Taking advantage of others errors is, simply put, stealing.

    In theory, that’s a good idea.  But in practice it rarely if ever works.  To use a term I may have invented in my youth, they are “administratively incapable” of dealing with such situations.  Their records show they sent me ONE, and if I return ONE, then I MUST BE returning the ONE that I paid for, therefore they owe me a refund.  Their systems won’t allow them to do anything else.  They are “administratively incapable” of correcting their human errors.

    • #27
  28. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    kedavis (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    I have been out of the business for 7 years, having retired in 2014. My wife remained a salesman for the largest plumbing supply company in the USA for another 5 years after I retired. We both were retired when the pandemic hit. Our contacts in the business (contractor customers) never slowed down. It was odd, to me, with so many people’s jobs “on hold”, that remodeling and new construction would remain as busy as ever. But eventually the chink in the supply chains must have caught up with the surprisingly vigorous demand. I recently ordered a new range for our kitchen from Nebraska Furniture Mart. We are in the process of waiting several months for the appliance to arrive. I hope that is all it takes. The best advice I could give in this situation is pretty much the same advice I gave back when everything was flowing fairly smoothly. That is, plan ahead. Don’t tear everything out and then start ordering your fixtures and appliances. Doug had no choice. The water damage was extreme. But that is a unique situation. I have remodeled my house seven times. We plan thoroughly and purchase all the needed product in advance of starting the project. That also helps the installers. Having the product during the early stages of construction can help them to better understand what they will need to install it later.

    When it comes to receiving overages on orders, I encourage treating them as you would an underage. It’s pretty simple, if you receive more than you paid for, return it. If you receive less, expect to get more product or a refund. Taking advantage of others errors is, simply put, stealing.

    In theory, that’s a good idea. But in practice it rarely if ever works. To use a term I may have invented in my youth, they are “administratively incapable” of dealing with such situations. Their records show they sent me ONE, and if I return ONE, then I MUST BE returning the ONE that I paid for, therefore they owe me a refund. Their systems won’t allow them to do anything else. They are “administratively incapable” of correcting their human errors.

    Sounds like a great excuse for keeping something that doesn’t belong to you. Sorry, that’s the way I see it. BTW, what would you do if the shoe was on the other foot? Would you allow a company to charge you for a product or service they didn’t deliver?

    • #28
  29. kedavis Member
    kedavis
    @kedavis

    cdor (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    When it comes to receiving overages on orders, I encourage treating them as you would an underage. It’s pretty simple, if you receive more than you paid for, return it. If you receive less, expect to get more product or a refund. Taking advantage of others errors is, simply put, stealing.

    In theory, that’s a good idea. But in practice it rarely if ever works. To use a term I may have invented in my youth, they are “administratively incapable” of dealing with such situations. Their records show they sent me ONE, and if I return ONE, then I MUST BE returning the ONE that I paid for, therefore they owe me a refund. Their systems won’t allow them to do anything else. They are “administratively incapable” of correcting their human errors.

    Sounds like a great excuse for keeping something that doesn’t belong to you. Sorry, that’s the way I see it. BTW, what would you do if the shoe was on the other foot? Would you allow a company to charge you for a product or service they didn’t deliver?

    The records systems work differently there.  For example, if Home Depot says they sent me something, maybe by UPS, but UPS has no record of it being accepted or delivered, they can deal with that.  It’s records vs records.  And The Records Are Always Right.  I suppose they allow for them sending less than they were supposed to, and correcting for that, because of customer complaints.  But they’re not set up for dealing with overages.  I know, I’ve tried.

    I suppose you could say that someone who receives too much should donate it to charity or something, rather than profit from it personally.  But when they make it effectively impossible to do “the right thing” and actually fight against you doing so, I don’t see how it’s my responsibility or obligation to fix THEIR PROBLEM.  I’m certainly not going to drive 50-60 miles each way, even if I had a vehicle to do so, just to try and convince them to take it back.  In my case, that would cost more than the hole saw.

    I’m not aware of any charities in my little town.  Do you think I should throw it in the trash, to cleanse my soul?

    • #29
  30. cdor Member
    cdor
    @cdor

    kedavis (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    kedavis (View Comment):

    cdor (View Comment):

    When it comes to receiving overages on orders, I encourage treating them as you would an underage. It’s pretty simple, if you receive more than you paid for, return it. If you receive less, expect to get more product or a refund. Taking advantage of others errors is, simply put, stealing.

    In theory, that’s a good idea. But in practice it rarely if ever works. To use a term I may have invented in my youth, they are “administratively incapable” of dealing with such situations. Their records show they sent me ONE, and if I return ONE, then I MUST BE returning the ONE that I paid for, therefore they owe me a refund. Their systems won’t allow them to do anything else. They are “administratively incapable” of correcting their human errors.

    Sounds like a great excuse for keeping something that doesn’t belong to you. Sorry, that’s the way I see it. BTW, what would you do if the shoe was on the other foot? Would you allow a company to charge you for a product or service they didn’t deliver?

    The records systems work differently there. For example, if Home Depot says they sent me something, maybe by UPS, but UPS has no record of it being accepted or delivered, they can deal with that. It’s records vs records. And The Records Are Always Right. I suppose they allow for them sending less than they were supposed to, and correcting for that, because of customer complaints. But they’re not set up for dealing with overages. I know, I’ve tried.

    I suppose you could say that someone who receives too much should donate it to charity or something, rather than profit from it personally. But when they make it effectively impossible to do “the right thing” and actually fight against you doing so, I don’t see how it’s my responsibility or obligation to fix THEIR PROBLEM. I’m certainly not going to drive 50-60 miles each way, even if I had a vehicle to do so, just to try and convince them to take it back. In my case, that would cost more than the hole saw.

    I’m not aware of any charities in my little town. Do you think I should throw it in the trash, to cleanse my soul?

    I don’t care what you do with it, but I am happy to see you attempted to return any overage you receive. If the company doesn’t want it back there is nothing further you can do.

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