Tag Archives: deal

Colder’s New Year’s Sale – Same Scam, Different Name?

If you’re thinking about shopping at any of Colder’s store locations and participating in their Colder’s New Year’s Sale today, or any Colder’s sale anytime in the foreseeable future, realize that you may in fact NOT be getting “Something More!” but instead an eventual jerk-around related to the promised credit. It does not seem to matter if it’s a New Year’s Sale or Colder’s Half Back, Full Back, Quarter Back, or other promotions/deals/offers they advertise. A Colder’s ad might seem enticing on television or radio or in the newspaper, but beware: the reality may be quite different.

“Something More!”? More like “Something A Lot Less”.

Not True At Colder'sIn the end, you will most likely find Colder’s “Spend a Dollar Get a Dollar Back!” is only sort-of true. Not only is the offer limited to certain items at initial purchase, but it’s also limited at redemption time, and you’ll almost certainly find–as we and many others have, the hard way–that you can’t take advantage of ANY sale pricing, meaning you’re out the difference. The credit you thought was worth several hundred real dollars at Colder’s…ends up being practically worthless, as you’re almost always better off taking the sale price and not using your credit. Colder’s leaves you with money they’re apparently expecting you to never redeem. And indeed, Colder’s promotions seem set up specifically to make full-value redemption of your Quarter Back/Half Back/Full Back/Spend a Dollar Get a Dollar/etc credit as difficult as possible. The only thing, of course, is that you probably were not/will not be told this at the time of your initial purchase. Why would they, right?

Classic bait-and-switch, anyone?

You can read about our still-ongoing issue with Colder’s (which is still–now months later–entirely unresolved) and their scam. Be sure to check out the comments left there with that post, too, where others have written in to share the same or similar issues and stories of their own Colder’s shopping experiences.

If you’re reading this too late and have already participated in Colder’s New Year’s Sale, take close look at the terms and conditions of the sale–the restrictions in particular–and make SURE you got a great deal. Most people doing the math and understanding all the restrictions will probably find they did NOT get the great deal they thought they were getting.

Wait, you did get the terms/conditions/restrictions of the offer in writing, right?

Actually, you probably did not receive anything in writing from Colder’s detailing the terms and conditions of the promotion you participated in, leaving the interpretation and rules up to Colder’s to determine later when you go to use your credit. We have yet to see anything in writing from Colder’s detailing all the terms/conditions/restrictions of any of their promotions. They do list some details on their otherwise-useless website, but only for the current offer…and they’re incomplete and confusing. Also, as the page changes with each new deal/offer, it’s not only useless for people that don’t use the Internet, but for anyone that expects to find the terms for the deal they took weeks or months earlier when a new deal’s details have replaced that page’s contents entirely.

Run Away As Fast As You CanIf you didn’t get anything in writing detailing all the terms and conditions–and restrictions in particular–of the promotion, we urge you to press for this, or face the very real and likely possibility of getting screwed over even more later. Realize, too, that for each Colder’s employee you talk to, you may get a different set of rules and stories about the terms, conditions and restrictions. This past summer, we didn’t get anything in writing, trusting the sales staff, and we’re still having trouble with Colder’s taking responsibility for the lies we were told–and the other details we weren’t told, despite our asking–at our initial purchase.

Colder’s, on average, seems to be more expensive than a lot of other retailers selling the same variety of furniture, kitchen appliances, washers and dryers, bedding, living room and bedroom stuff, electronics, etc. You may well want to take your item(s) back for a refund and instead buy from a more reputable and likely less-expensive retailer that isn’t solely interested in getting you in the door to rip you off…not once, but twice!

Consider yourself warned. There are plenty of other places to shop for everything Colder’s sells. We strongly recommend you do not shop at Colder’s… unless you like wasting money, taking advantage of promotions that end up not being anywhere as attractive as they’re advertised when you finally go to redeem whatever credit, or simply getting burned, over and over again.

It’s a shame a local Milwaukee-area business chooses to operate this way.

Office Ultimate 2007 for students…cheap!

You’ve long been able to go to a local retailer for some time and pick up a “student” edition of Office for around $150 (often on sale for less after instant or mail-in rebates). You’ve never had to prove your student status for those items, and it became a relatively inexpensive way to obtain a “standard” version of Office for pretty cheap.

Plenty of college campuses have done deals with Microsoft as well, offering Office and other MS products for ridiculously low prices (realizing, of course, that student tuition and fees are subsidizing that to some degree). $10 copies of Windows, $20 copies of Office, etc weren’t unheard of.

Microsoft is trying something new; it may or may not be for you, though (keep reading).

Starting today, they’re offering Office Ultimate 2007 for $60. Early word is it will be download-only. The program goes live later today (around 1pm US-Central time, although the site’s countdown clock has been a little wonky), and runs through April of next year. The website for it is here:

[LINK: theultimatesteal.com]

The exact licensing terms are still unavailable. I strongly recommend you review the license terms (once the site goes live and those terms are posted), of course. In the cases of university programs that have offered MS software in the past, sometimes students were granted perpetual licenses for any software they still owned at graduation time. Other agreements called for license suspension at graduation, or terminated licenses if you never graduated at all. Pricing has also varied wildly. No idea yet if the installation will be limited to a single PC or allow a few installs (as other “student” editions have in the past) so you end up with the home PC, the laptop, etc, all covered.

Bottom line, though: for the money, even if the license expires upon graduation, $60 through this new program is a pretty darn good deal. The suite has a retail value of $679.

ALL THAT SAID, you should still check with your university (probably your campus bookstore) and see what they’re offering. You may well get a better deal from them than this one, still.

ArsTechnica has more details on MS’ TheUltimateSteal program here:

[LINK: arstechnica.com]