I was pleased to receive a call yesterday afternoon from the company from which I bought the hob and oven on Thursday. The chap seemed quite pleasant, if a little too chatty, but he was interested in my feedback on the ease of ordering the products, why I chose those products and how I found the website.
All very nice, and I thought I was getting good customer service.
Then he told me that the products had a lifetime guarantee, and my little antennae started wiggling. A lifetime guarantee on a hob and a cooker? That sounded a little too good to be true....
He then proceeded to tell me that this "lifetime guarantee" would cost me £8.98 a month to cover the two appliances, and would ensure that I wouldn't have to foot the bill for any repairs or replacements for the products in the event that they wore out or broke down.
And then he asked me to "confirm" my sort code so he could begin to set up the direct debit.
I soon put the brakes on that whole scenario, pointing out that he didn't know the sort code, so I wouldn't be "confirming" it because he was actually asking me to provide it. I then had a go at him over springing this whole thing on me over the phone, pointing out that this wasn't a "lifetime guarantee" but actually an insurance scheme, which he wasn't too chuffed about. Then I said that my previous oven and hob had lasted me 10 years, so I would be gambling on this one lasting only half as long at that rate - £8.98 a month over 10 years is over £1000, and the hob and oven together cost half that. I could keep my cash and just buy another one when I needed them as I have done this time - and the balance of the gamble is in my favour, I hope!
I am afraid that I also told him that what had started off seeming to be a pleasant customer service call had become a fairly hard-sell sales call, and I wasn't very impressed. He was rather persistent, but he hasn't got my sort code, and I haven't agreed to participate in his scheme. He has emailed me the details so that I can consider it. It may take me a while....