Bed shop charged a cancellation fee after giving bad advice

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I am 80 years old and recently lost my wife of 54 years. I wanted to replace our bed and in March I ordered a small 4ft double from HSL in Bristol.

The salesperson was helpful and assured me the bed would fit up the stairwell of my 1932 semi-detached house.

However, when it arrived the delivery men said there was no way they could get the frame and mattress up the stairs, so they had to take it away. This left me feeling distressed and confused.

After discussion with my family I cancelled the order but discovered that under the terms of the contract I would be fined 30% of the £2,485 cost, which is £745.50. My family think this is excessive and it should be reduced to cover the company’s costs as the bed and mattress are brand new and can be resold.

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You acknowledge that HSL’s cancellation policy was outlined in the sales contract you signed and the company also sets it out clearly on its website. However, you feel you were given bad advice in the store and the penalty you face should be reduced to reflect that.

When we contacted HSL on your behalf, the company said: “Our terms and conditions clearly state that it is the customer’s responsibility to ensure that the appropriate access is available to ensure successful delivery.”

However, it added that while unable to confirm that the salesperson had provided you with the reassurance you claim, customer satisfaction was its “number one priority”. It has agreed to reduce the cancellation charge to 10% (£248.50) and has reimbursed you £497.

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You think this is fair and have bought an alternative, cheaper bed from John Lewis, which you are very happy with.

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