Best Buy denied me any returns for a year


I just wanted to warn people about this as Best Buy certainly didn’t warn me. I have purchased many computers and electronics from them over the years, literally thousands. I have been returning a few items lately, mostly unopened home automation switches and sensors etc. Tonight on the last little switch I was returning a receipt printed out that said I can no longer do returns. I called the number and they said I can’t return anything for a year, that I have returned too many things. So the $750 ADT Smartthings Alarm kit and other Ecobee room sensors that I purchased at the very same time cannot be returned. If I had known this ahead of time, I would never have bought those things.

Why are buying stuff to return it?


This happened to me once after I returned a phone (and immediately re-bought to get a better deal) and a TV that I wasn’t happy with in the same year. They told me that it was only on future purchases for some period of time. I think you’re safe on things you’ve already purchased. They can’t change the terms and conditions after the fact like this.

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To answer that queston, I hadn’t read all these great posts and bough the wrong system. Also they can’t answer your questions so you just have to buy it and see if it works.

There’s your answer right there. You have returned so many items they have marked you as a possible counterfeiter or serial returner to make money. They are doing it to mitigate fraudulent returns.


Three of the five of your posts are asking about returning things.


You still can make a warranty claim, I guess … and contact your Credit Card issuer – many of them have bonus purchase protection programs that extend warranties, price-drop refunds, return policy extensions, etc.

If only there were some way to find information on things before you got in the car and drove to Best Buy.


Historically I am not a huge fan of Best Buy, however I have always found them to be more than fair with returns. Heck, they just let my mom upgrade her open and used Apple Watch for a cellular model, after 29 days, and without being an Elite member. Did did not have to fight, argue, or even ask for a manager. She explained why she wanted to exchange and they said agreed with no hesitation. She wasn’t expecting them to say yes and therefore didn’t bring the box. It surprised me to learn that they offered to hold the new watch for her so she could go home and get the box which she did.

We forum dwellers can only understand your situation from your perspective, of which you do admit to making numerous returns lately. Best Buy didn’t change the terms of their policy just for you, if you read their T&Cs it will surely state that they have the right to suspect return “privileges”. Privilege is the key word here, the meaning of which asserts that it is not a right nor a guarantee. This is a common policy for just about all major chains; I’ve heard similar stories about Lowe’s and Home Depot as well.

At the end of the day, your best defense is to exercise the appropriate level of judgement before making any purchase.


Hi Steve,
I totally agree with you. I did talk to the manager and he pointed out previous returns. Some of those were exchanges for better products. I looked at the receipts and the website for return policies but nothing said anything about denying returns. I would like to know where the T&Cs are so I can review them. I don’t necessarily disagree with limiting returns but what I do disagree with is not warning me in advance or at least at the time of purchse. It should be a policy of “you can’t return anything you purchase in the future” not you can’t return a couple thousand I just bought from them. I don’t think it is fair to change the policy retroactively. If they had told me that before I just spend $750 tonight, then I would’nt not have made that purchase. It is the warning and retrocactive part that upsets me.

With all that said, would anyone like to buy a $150 ST Home Monitoring kit that I was going to return becuase I just bought the ADT ST starter kit & expansion kit for $850 which has a built in ST Hub, LOL. Stuck with 2 hubs now plus some unopned Ecobee room sensors that I bought too many of.

They haven’t changed their policy. They noticed that you are returning a lot of items most likely in a short period of time at that.

Why are you buying multiplies of things and planning to return them? And now want to sell them here.

You sound like a fraud or serial returner that hopes to make money on the items.

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Geeze, I think y’all are being a little harsh. I often will buy too many items (if I’m unsure how have I need or want so I don’t have to go back to the store until I’m done) or two different types of things to help figure out which one I want. Heck, a Best Buy employee encouraged me to buy a Sonos system and a different brand to audition in my house to see which I preferred. I would have been so upset if they decided to not take the other one back because if this. He is returning unopened items that can be resold within the time period with guys receipt, and you guys are basically saying he’s trying to defraud them. I think it’s terrible to think they could just revoke their return policy basically whenever they feel like it, and retroactively at that. From my experience with this I learned to never buy anything expensive from them (made my wife buy the sounds bar since she’s never returned anything) it you’re not 100% sure you are keeping it. Hence, in not going to buy my next TV or appliance from them either. I like to support them because I want to support brick and mortar, but the makes it hard.


Then you’re abusing the return policy, as that’s not what it is intended for.


Best Buy and a number of other electronics retailers have multiple problems with returns fraud. People buy a video camera, use it for a wedding, then return it. Or they replace one model with a similar but less expensive model, and return it in the box for the more expensive model. Or they buy a hot new product while prices are high, then return it once prices have dropped and buy a different one at the new price. All kinds of stuff. This then raises prices for everyone.

So most of them hire an outside service, and this is what Best Buy does, which looks for specific patterns which indicate current fraud or abuse. They won’t publish these exact algorithms, because then it would become too easy for intentional fraudsters to stay right underneath the red flag line.

However, they all have a process for appealing this kind of returns ban. Basically you just have to call someone at that third-party service and explain each of the purchases and returns. They know what they’re looking for, and they are specialists in this. So they’re the ones who look and see that oh you returned that but you bought a different similar product and kept it.

One of the reasons that the retail employees at Best Buy are kept out of this process is because the third-party service is also looking for employee fraud. So the local store manager can’t help.

Anyway, the first thing to do if you feel the ban is inappropriate is to follow the established appeals policy.


Credit card charge back not possible?

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In the future, do your research on a product ahead of time, knowing that’s what you believe is the right choice. Don’t blame the Best Buy employee for not knowing anything about the product.

If a return doesn’t become the norm (I would love to see the return log they have on you), a store isn’t going to have an issue refunding or exchanging an item for you.

Chalk it up to a lesson learned in life.

And for the one that said this:

I’m sorry, this is absolutely asinine and makes no sense. "I buy too many so I don’t have to go back to the store until I’m done to return the leftovers. LOL, C’Mon Man! If you planned appropriately and methodically and did your research, you would know how much of something that you needed. If for some reason, you didn’t purchase enough of something, well, you go back to the store and pick up the one you missed. You are going back to the store anyway because you already love to purchase too much of one thing.

You may not think it’s abuse, but you affect the store and it comes as a cost to the consumer, either from a $ perspective or that its out of stock because you decided to purchase 6 instead of 3 and will maybe return the extra 3 you didn’t need in a couple of weeks, and the product is now out of stock for the next person who wanted just one. On top of everything, it’s ignorant for people to think only of themselves, not aware of others around them in their own bubble, because they think what they are doing is a convenience for their life without any down line ramifications or consequences to anyone else. Harsh? No, just being completely real with you. Since you decided the need to share about your ridiculous buying/returning habit, I just couldn’t hold my breath any longer and decided I would share with you just what I think because my eyes are open to the world around me.

Its for these kinds of things that I am glad these retail stores have these restrictions in place, so we don’t end up paying even more than we already do for retail products.


I don’t know, electricians, AV installers and builders do that ALL THE TIME from home depot and lowes, they simply don’t know exactly what they might need when they go to a customer’s location, so it’s normal to buy lots of extra gear, wiring, and what-ifs to account for measurement problems, breakage, fitment etc. I certainly wouldn’t be happy if they kept going out every time they needed an extra electrical box or several yards of nomex for an hour, time is money when your house is taken apart. Our security guy had far more sensors than he needed for his install as did networking folks. Then they return the leftovers (hundreds and sometimes thousands worth of materials) months later after the build is completed (return policies allow that). Building out a HA environment is more like home/office construction than building a computer, Best Buy just hasn’t figured it out yet because they’re new to this market segment and think they have all the answers. Home construction, and electrical supply stores know this is the norm, and cater their return policies around this behavior because they know people who do this for a living can’t ask for an extra day or two just because they didn’t have an extra gizmo because one broke or the customer miscounted their windows.


Those builders probably buy/return under different contractor sales agreements with Home Depot/Lowes. Not quite the same at Best Buy


Irrelevant. As long as the OP was doing nothing shady, they should accept his return. If they want to put him in timeout, do so at the time of purchase, not after he’s purchased a high-ticket item.

I wouldn’t sit through any arbitrary appeals process conducted by someone with their own best interest in conflict with mine. I would contact my CC company and initiate a charge-back immediately.

I don’t care how many returns I have. If an item ends up not suiting my needs within the advertised return period, I should be allowed to return it. Caveat emptor be damned.


Shop elsewhere. What’s the big deal?