AUSTIN (KXAN) — An online store based in Buda, Texas, advertising items inspired by stores on South Congress has received numerous complaints from customers who say they are not receiving the items they ordered. SoCo Vintage has received 12 complaints in the last year and the business has failed to respond to nine of those claims, according to the Better Business Bureau. The other three said they received refunds, but the money was returned well past the expected delivery date.
The BBB said several attempts to reach the company by phone, text message, email and mailed letters to two addresses have been unsuccessful.
“I kept tabs on the order through their website and it was always hung up in processing,” said Chavon Roman, an Elgin, Texas, resident who ordered a pair of shoes after seeing them on Pinterest. “I ordered them in February and my card has already been charged. I got some emails back saying they would look into it, but they never said why my order had been delayed. If they are no longer available and they want to offer me something else, OK. I just want something or my money back.”
Another woman from Ohio purchased a dress back in February and is still waiting on her order.
“I ordered a dress from their website on Feb. 16. I asked them if it would arrive within two weeks for a wedding and they said ‘yes,’” Kelsey Ernsthausen said. “I never received it. I’ve tried to contact them on the phone, but it goes straight to voicemail. I’ve tried to contact them online and through their Facebook page. They’ve blocked me on Facebook. They always delete those types of comments.”
The Better Business Bureau offers the following advice when making purchases online:
- Pay with a credit card. Under federal law, charges made on a credit card can be disputed up to 60 days after the purchase.
- Keep documentation of your order. After completing the online order process, there should be a final confirmation page or an email confirmation. Print and save any receipts for future reference.
- Know your rights. Federal law requires that orders made by mail, phone or online be shipped by the date promised or, if no delivery time was stated, within 30 days. If the goods aren’t shipped on time, the shopper can cancel and demand a refund. There is no general three-day cancellation right, but consumers do have the right to reject merchandise if it’s defective or was misrepresented. Otherwise, it’s the company’s policies that determine if the shopper can cancel the purchase and receive a refund or credit.
- Do your research. Check the company’s BBB Business Review at bbb.org before making a purchase to see its complaint history, details about complaints and any advertising-related issues.