Monday, June 18, 2012

Pond and Fountain World: Customer Contempt

In June, 2011, I purchased a three-tiered fountain from Pond and Fountain World, 11816 Shelbyville Road, Louisville, KY  40243.  My salesperson was Paul Peterson, a more worthless individual I've not had the misfortune of meeting.  I chose this company on the assumption of quality and service yet it's clear my assumption was invalid.

Due to the size of the fountain, and due to my own physical liabilities, I chose to have the fountain professionally installed by Pond and Fountain World.

During the installation, I noted that the top tier had been broken and repaired.  The installation personnel agreed and they proceeded to call Mr. Peterson who relayed that the broken piece would be replaced.  That fact was noted on our receipt.

I waited and, upon hearing nothing regarding the replacement part, called Pond and Fountain World to follow up.  I was told someone would look into it and call be back.  No one did.  Again, I called, relayed the story and was told that someone would call me back and, again, no one did.

In the fall (September, 2011), I spoke and corresponded with Mr. Doug Stovall who was the first person with whom I spoke who seemed to have a genuine interest in resolving the issue.  We discussed the fact that the season was winding down and it would be best (for THEM) if the replacement part in question was shipped along with other parts , but that could take months.

Foolishly, I agreed to wait until spring to have this resolved.  I thought my reasonableness would be rewarded but, alas, it was just another stall.  In March, 2012, I contacted Pond and Fountain World, asked for Mr. Doug Stovall and was told that Mr. Stovall was no longer with the company.  Once again, I told my story (this time to a fellow named “Mike”, and once again, I was told it would be handled.

In April, 2012, I unexpectedly received a small palletized shipment at my home which proved to be the replacement part.  As I was involved in other matters, the skid sat, literally untouched in my driveway until June 17, 2012, when I opened it and prepared to replace it and, nearly a year after its installation, finally have it complete.

The part in question was broken.

I called Mike on June 18, 2012, relayed the information and my profound disappointment in same.  I proposed that the company offer me an adjustment as, after the time and effort, I had decided to resign myself to settling on a two-tier fountain.  Mike’s response was to tell me that they did what was expected and to essentially tell me that their responsibility has ended.

I guess that’s my reward for being reasonable in the fall and not having been more demanding.

He did say that he would pass this along to “his supervisor” but, like every other time they said that they'd "get back with me", they didn't.

Not returning a call or two is a mistake and to err is human.  Continually being ignored by multiple individuals is indicative of a fundamental dysfunction at the corporate level.

I must say that I cannot recall having done business with another entity quite like Pond and Fountain World.  In 58 years, I have never had the occasion to write a letter such as this, but if there were ever such an occasion, this is it.

Do business with these rogues and charlatans at your own risk.


Anonymous said...

Mr. & Mrs. Weeks,

We keep a number of fountains at our store to help show our customer’s different genres of design, and to help patrons decide what fountain may best suit their needs. Over time, outdoor fountains do experience some wear and tear from the elements, as will any outdoor product. Eventually we will discount our display models, and when they sell we will replace the fountain with a different design to keep things changing. The fountain you purchased was a display fountain, and was sold “as is”. There was no confusion as to whether this was a used fountain, as the fountain was in use when you selected it. The Quadrate Fountain referenced by you in this complaint retails at $2248.50. We sold this particular fountain to the customer for $592.60.

You called repeatedly until you found someone willing to offer a replacement piece without looking into your specific purchase. When we discovered this, we upheld their statement and had a replacement piece made. We even paid to have the replacement shipped to your home. I called you to let him know that the piece was being sent, and to inspect it when it arrives before signing the delivery receipt. The pallet was carried via motor freight, and residential deliveries require a delivery appointment. With a delivery appointment scheduled, the piece couldn’t have arrived unexpectedly. I have a copy of the delivery receipt signed by you stating that the freight was delivered in good condition. Two months after delivery, we received a call from you stating that the piece was broken. The piece was brand new, and left the manufacturers facility in good condition. If it arrived broken, then it may have broken during transit, which would be the carriers fault. Claims for concealed damage must be filed within 15 days, and 60 had already passed.

Our company has done everything we can to help this situation. We cannot replace a piece for free when the reason is that a different company broke it. We would gladly champion your cause and try to get the carrier to pay for the replacement, but it has been two months, and the carrier has a signed statement from you saying that the product arrived without damage.


Mike White
Shipping & Receiving
Pond & Fountain World

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