Read how a visitor scheduled to fly back to her home abroad got mired into the pit of Homesonic in Starmall:
Homesonic – Starmall Edsa – 725-7335 – Scam
I am adding my complaint about their unethical tactics to the hundreds, possibly thousands of similar stories already on file on the internet and the Department of Trade & Industry.
It is amazing to me that with so many complaints every day (and not one satisfied customer!), this outfit is still in business — apparently pulling the same crooked stunts several times every day, preying on vulnerable widows, grandmothers, pregnant women, and elderly people.
My Story is the same as everybody else’s.
I was on my way to pick up my laundry on the afternoon of 8 Dec 2012 when a lady approached me outside the Homesonic Store in Starmall and said “We are having an anniversary giveaway so come in and get a free gift.” I said “No, I don’t need anything” The girl pulled me into the store, then pushed me down in a massage chair inside the store.
She handed me an envelope which she described as a raffle ticket. I opened it … the message inside said I won 2000 pesos, plus a massage chair worth 85,000 Pesos, and a multi purpose cooker worth 15,000 pesos. I was told I didn’t have to buy anything I was the lucky winner. All the staff, about 4 girls and 2 men were then surrounding me, cheering, applauding, and congratulating me on being a very lucky winner. They said everybody else only gets a “thank you for participating note.”
“You are so lucky!”
Then the salesgirl said that there was no obligation to buy and and everything was free winnings but would I like to have my picture taken and make a statement to be used to advertise Homesonic Products. I said “no problem.”
After that, they brought over a few more boxes of appliances all the while screaming and yelling how lucky I was. They then brought over still more boxes and handed them to me shouting excitedly , you are so lucky you have also won all this free stuff: a set of flatware cutlery worth 15,900, a body-fat measuring scale worth 6,900, an infra-red massager set worth 9,900. That is in addition to the Massage Chair P85,000 and the multi-purpose rice cooker P 15,000.
Then the salesgirl handed me a cell phone. A lady on the line identified herself as a regional supervisor and asked me if I had any relatives on the Homesonic staff which would prevent me from being a lucky grand lottery winner. I said “No!” I handed the phone back to the original saleslady who put on a big act that she was so excited and happy for me because now I was going to win even more stuff.
Then a man who identified himself as the store manager or supervisor came over with an inventory list of all my “winnings” show a total value of 114,000 pesos.
But “Because are a big winner today, you don’t have to pay that.”
Then the salesgirl said they would deliver and install all my prizes if I paid for only the delivery charges of 8,000 pesos in cash. I only had 7000 P . They agreed to accept that and make delivery.
Then he handed me a purchase agreement pointing out that there was a big “7 day money back guarantee, stamped in a different color ink” on it. Then he asked for identification and a credit card, and I gave it to him.
The goods were delivered and my husband told the delivery girls “Do not unpack anything, we are in a hotel room and will be going on a plane soon; we have no use for this stuff even if it is free.” They kept unpacking the massage chair, plunked him into it, and then with the hand massager I had won started to massage his feet & told him to calm down. He did not calm down but said to me and to them “If you do not return this stuff at once to the store, I want a divorce. You might as well have brought up a white elephant for us. We are in a small hotel room, leaving Manila on a plane in a few days and have absolutely no use for this stuff . We can’t possibly carry it with us — free or otherwise. I will want storage charges and delivery handling charges if I have to bring it back.” The delivery girls paid no attention and left my “ winnings.”
At this point I looked at the “sales contract” and realized I had signed it. In my euphoria over my big winnings, I had also signed a visa credit card slip which I later learned was for 49,900 pesos.
As it was late in the day, I waited till the first thing next morning. Then I called the store asking to return everything, cancel any credit card charges & and get back my cash money under the “7 Day money back guarantee” clearly stamped on my “sales contract.”
The supervisor who would not identify himself said “You used the stuff and so no return is possible.”
I told him everything was in the original boxes, seals not broken, except for the massage chair which the girls had unpacked and which we never used or even sat in. I said “please pick up everything immediately.” This supervisor and later ones who called that day insisted “we will only take back merchandise in unopened boxes and only if you agree to pay us half the money, i.e. 25,000 + 7,000 as our service charge.” I said “No way” Then I cancelled their credit card charge on the internet.
After this the next day I received frantic calls from Homesonic demanding 32,000 pesos cash and their goods back.
My husband said to the caller “ we will deliver everything back today if you refund our 7000 pesos cash.” The unidentified supervisor said “bring it in and maybe we will give you a check.”
My husband said “Yesterday we saw hundreds of complaints about Homesonic’s similar SCAMS on the internet and SO we don’t trust your checks. Will you give us cash OR NOT?”
The answer was, “No you still owe us 32,000P charges even if we take back anything.”
At this point I called the Filipino Dept of Trade to make a complaint, but as the procedures there involved personal visits, forms, and so many complications that I decided it was easier to lose the 8000 pesos.
And that pretty much is the whole story.
19 Dec. 2012
Click this to see more complaints against Homesonic Appliances
Hi Isabelle, great you were firm, strong and very smart and you were not fooled. Correct ka na bakit andiyan pa rin sila, kasi meron pa ring mga salespersons na nagpapagamit kahit alam nila na mali ang sales tactics nila, na merong business owners or managers na okay lang sa kanila ang manloko, at mahinang law enforcement.
hi, i had the same experience many years ago, at Homesonic, Kalentong, they didnt get anything from me, only my time. While I was sitting inside their store sorrounded by the ladies and men, I already realized they were a scam so I never brought out any ID or credit card. I really wonder why that kind of store continue to exist, I’m sorry for the many women(their frequent target)whom they had fooled.
Hi Candy, that’s great. You were strong and you stood your ground. Unfortunately, many OFWs and other Pinoys are so trusting, so mabait, so respectful, and many really are swayed by sales talk and deceitful tactics. Thanks for sharing your experience, Candy, best regards
I had the same experience with Homesonic but the good thing they fail to get any cash from me.I lied whenever they ask ID or credit card.I said i dont have any.I was very doubtful when they started to announce all my winnings.The same strategy…but that time it was in divisoria mall…Tutuban maybe.I forgot already coz its been long time if im not mistaken more than 5 yrs already.Because they did not get any cash from me all the winnings go down to somewhat like door bell battery operated.Hahaha all they took was my time bec.they wouldnt let me out of the store they try to obstruct my way everytime i say i dont need all those things coz i dont have cash.I was on vacation that time.Im an OFW and i was going around divisoria to buy stuffs for coming back when one of the salesman pulled me to Homesonic store.I was thinking how come they choose me.Maybe they sensed that i am an OFW ?Really i wonder a lot after that incident.Its good i became consistent with my answer to them.Their eyes were very observant when you open your wallet when they ask your ID for verification.They are trying to get info from the card you will give them.Because i lied that i was not working they keep spontaneous conversation with me digging more how im surviving everyday expenses.When they ask ID for verification i gave them SSS although i have lots of ID to not reveal my profession or else they will extract me by hook or by crook to get into their trap.Thanks God i was so concious at that time where they were leading me….
Hi norma, it’s really very frustrating and sad… Grayline is one of more than 30 pre-need firms that became bankrupt. You can email Insurance Commission firstname.lastname@example.org with subject Grayline Plans planholder and describe your complaint
i received a certificate of full payment from your respective office Grayline Plans, Inc., and it was indicated that my contract was already matured on December 21, 2012, but i never seen your respective office anymore here in Mindanao, i was trying to reach you so i could be able to claim the money but then unfortunately i failed.