Think Twice Before Returning Items to These 5 Stores

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Bring back one too many items, and it could mean no more buying for you.

How many times have you skipped the dressing room, figuring you can always return what doesn’t fit? You might want to rethink that shopping strategy at some stores.

We’ve told you about the stores with the best return policies, and now it’s time to unveil the lemons. Here are five stores that may go so far as to ban you for making too many returns.

1. Amazon

For most items sold by Amazon, the online retailer gives you 30 days to make a return. Miss that window, and your refund could be docked by 20 percent of the purchase price. Take the plastic wrap off DVDs, CDs and games, and your refund drops 50 percent. And don’t even think about returning opened software. You won’t get anything for that.

All that may be within the realm of the reasonable, compared with other store return policies. What may be more concerning for shoppers is the number of people who say they’ve been banned from Amazon for what the store deems to be excessive returns. The store doesn’t say anything about banning customers in its posted policy, but it apparently closes your account when you hit a certain percentage of returns.

2. Best Buy

The electronics giant made it onto Consumer Reports’ “Naughty List” for the 2013 holiday shopping season because of its return policy. The store requires a valid ID to make a return or exchange and then tracks that information.

The company warns in its return policy: “Based on return/exchange patterns, some customers will be warned that subsequent returns and exchanges will not be eligible for returns or exchanges for 90 days.”

Beyond that, Best Buy gives customers a tiny window to make returns, only 15 days for customers who aren’t My Best Buy Elite or Elite Plus members.

3. Saks Fifth Avenue

Saks Fifth Avenue has also decided to go with a 30-day window for returns. If you try to make a late return, Saks will only credit you based on the current selling price regardless of how much your receipt says you paid.

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