Rey Torio bought his home four years ago and has been busy remodeling it ever since.
“It’s been blood, sweat and tears working on this house,” said Torio. “And it’s getting beautiful and beautiful.”
This past spring, Torio was adding the finishing touches to his home - new furniture. He found exactly what he wanted at Ramos Furniture in Fremont.
“I want everything - a ‘wow factor,’” said Torio.
Torio ordered three pieces -- a credenza, buffet and coffee table. He paid $2,300, and he says Ramos promised the furniture would be delivered within five weeks. Just in time for Torio’s housewarming party.
“They promised me,” said Torio. “Guaranteed.”
But days before the party, the furniture hadn’t arrived. So Torio said Ramos loaned him the floor models.
"We will provide you a loaner, and then we'll switch," Torio recalls Ramos telling him.
But the switch never happened. And Torio said the floor models weren’t good enough - there were scratches on the coffee table, chipped glass on the buffet, and the doors on the credenza were crooked.
“I did not buy this thing in the flea market,” said Torio.
Torio says Ramos ignored his phone calls demanding new furniture.
“Tell me - why am I being treated like this?” said Torio.
After several frustrating weeks, Torio reached out to us.
“I just want my money back and forget about this thing,” said Torio.
We reached out to Ramos. There was some finger pointing on both sides. Torio didn’t get what he paid for in the time he was promised. But Ramos said Torio wasn’t consistent in asking for what he wanted - new furniture or a refund.
We helped both sides navigate an agreement. They decided a refund was best.
With the money back in his pocket, Torio is ready to go shopping again.
“It would be nice if I could show my beautiful house,” said Torio.
Ramos issued a short statement for this story: “We tried to help the customer as best as possible. We decided to give a full refund.”
The lesson here: When ordering furniture, don’t pay everything upfront. A 25-30 percent deposit is standard. Also ask the retailer if that’s refundable, should you change your mind.