Australian customers call for online home appliance business to shut down

Recently, A topical matter received an influx of emails about an Australian-based online business called Home Appliances Plus.

Elsewhere, online product reviews were scathing.

Customers said they were left out after buying items that didn’t show up.

Appliances More. (A current affair)

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Home Appliances Plus seems like a one-stop-shop.

It claims to offer up to 70% off everything from outdoor furniture, gym equipment and electronics to jewelry, toys and children’s clothing.

It appears to be targeting Australian customers on several social media platforms, with thousands of people across the country buying items since its inception in April last year.

An online business created in Australia called Home Appliances Plus. (A current affair)

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But now the complaints are pouring in and A topical matter received daily emails from customers who claim after weeks of waiting that their items have not arrived.

They are angry and disappointed and want answers from the company – and for the website to be taken down.

“Either cough up the funds and pay them back to everyone or, you know, run their business appropriately and let people know what’s going on,” said Sydney-based client Di Williams.

Sydney-based client, Di Williams. (A current affair)

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Williams was looking for exercise equipment online when she came across Home Appliances Plus.

After finding the website quick and easy to navigate, she purchased a rowing machine and bedside tables for $330.

“There was some sort of mention on the website that there were delays due to COVID-19,” she said.

Williams waited three weeks before emailing the company asking what had happened.

“What if the order was not going to be fulfilled, could it be refunded please? I received no response and tried to call using the website phone number. And this phone number was constantly engaged,” Williams said. A topical matter.

Dave was looking for a pet crate online when an advertisement for Home Appliances Plus appeared.

Queensland-based client, Dave. (A current affair)

Attracted by the cheaper price, he bought the item.

“It was professional, it was quick – two or three clicks. I put my credit card in and got the order confirmation almost immediately,” said Queensland-based Dave. A topical matter.

But he said he still hadn’t arrived.

“They need to stop taking orders and start refunding or giving people what they asked for,” he said.

The 54-year-old has since filed a complaint with the Office of Fair Trading Queensland.

“It just needs to stop or be stopped very quickly so that from now on no one is affected and maybe from now on this company cleans up their mess,” Dave said.

Another angry client, Andrew Lea, is also a forensic accountant.

Andre Lea. (A current affair)

“It’s expensive for people who can ill afford it,” Lea said.

“Every time you threaten them to take action, they say, ‘Oh, no, no, we ship today and we ship tomorrow,’ but that doesn’t happen,” Lea said.

When his items didn’t arrive after more than a month, he contacted Home Appliances Plus for answers, only to receive generic answers.

“You know, it’s in the warehouse, it’s about to go, we have COVID, our carriers let us down, we’re unable to find the carrier’s tracking number,” he said. he declares.

It was then that Lea began to question the legitimacy of the business.

“I’ve looked at other websites, review sites and it’s just pages and pages and pages,” Lea said.

Over 1000 customers have left reviews about the company on productreview.com.au.

Some customers have left reviews for the company on productreview.com.au (A Current Affair)

“Avoid at all costs, I ordered a fridge never received it, tried to get a refund…they kept avoiding my emails, so they took them to the ‘ACCC,” one customer wrote.

“High risk, do not buy from them, delivery confirmation emails are consistently ignored. Chat provided the same response every week.”

And currently, the star rating is very low, at only 1.4 out of five.

However, there are a small number of customers who said that after a long delay, their goods finally arrived.

A company search revealed that Home Appliances Plus started in April last year.

The ABN is linked to Steel and Water Pty Ltd, with directors listed as Richard Edwards and Ashley Fabics, based in Tasmania and Victoria.

What customers don’t realize is that this is a drop shipping company.

“A drop-shipping business has virtually no inventory and no stores or warehouses, so costs are much lower for these businesses,” said Professor Gary Mortimer from Queensland University of Technology Business. School.

Professor Gary Mortimer from Queensland University of Technology Business School. (A current affair)

“The challenge, of course, that creates is that if the manufacturer has supply chain issues, they impact your customer and that negatively impacts your brand.”

We tried the company phone lines, but only got an automated message.

So we contacted director Edwards, but after getting no response from him, we called our fellow director Fabics.

“We don’t have anything to say at this time, we’re trying to, uh, organize everything… we’re refunding orders, but that’s all I can tell you at this time,” Fabics said.

The Home Appliances Plus website domain is registered with ECommerce Commodities.

Brothers Grant and Klint Parker are directors and run online dropshipping courses.

A topical matter doesn’t suggest the brothers are involved in operating Home Appliances Plus, but perhaps those who do could use a refresher course.

“Maybe they could take a look at what they’re doing and how (they) would feel if that happened to them,” Williams said.

“No matter how much money you have, no matter how many toys you have, how many cars you have, how many houses you have, you have nothing if you’ve lost your reputation,” Lea said.

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