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    Category: Home Improvement

    Stupid customers still have to live somewhere. While we applaud them for sometimes wanting to make the place look nice, please don’t assume flat-pack furniture comes ready out of the box, or that power-tools are named as such because they need power! They make Tim The Toolman Taylor look like Frank Gehry!

    Had Enough Of Her S***

    | San Francisco, CA, USA | Crazy Requests, Home Improvement, Money

    (I work for a small town plumber answering his phones and scheduling his jobs.)

    Me: “Good morning. This is [Company]. How can I help you today?”

    Customer: “I am calling to get [Boss] out here right away. My toilet is over-flowing and I need him out here, now.”

    Me: “Okay, let me see what I can do for you. Can I please have your name?”

    Customer: *gives me her name*

    Me: “And I will need the address of where we are to go.”

    Customer: “I am a repeat customer. You should already have my address. Now look it up and be quick about it.”

    Me: “All right. I am checking our database; however, I do not see you in here. I will be happy to get your information right now so that we can schedule a time to come out.”

    Customer: “What? I am not in there?! What kind of a company doesn’t keep customer records? You find me now, and stop being lazy.  Your boss would never delete me. I am a very important customer to him.”

    Me: “I am sorry. I did not say you were deleted. Perhaps the previous person never entered you into the system but I will be happy to do that for you now.”

    Customer: “Look. I want [Boss] out to my house, now!

    (The customer reluctantly gives me her physical address.)

    Customer: “Apparently you don’t know who I am. What is your name?”

    Me: “My name is [My Name].  I am checking our schedule and I can have one of our technicians come out to take care of you this afternoon. Will 1 pm be convenient for you?”

    Customer: “What the h*** are you talking about, 1pm? No, that is not convenient for me. I want [Boss] here now to clean this s*** up, and don’t send anyone but him.”

    Me: “I am terribly sorry, but he is on another job out of the area at the moment. The soonest I could have a technician to your place would be in about an hour but I will have to pull him off another job. I can send [Technician] to take care of you then. Would that be all right with you?”

    Customer: “Absolutely not. Now, you get on the phone and get your boss out here to clean this s*** up. I want my appointment with him. You put me on your calendar with him and stop arguing with me. Don’t you know that the customer is always right?  You should be grateful for the business I am giving you.”

    Me: “I am sorry, but my boss is unavailable today. Are you sure that you would not reconsider one of our other technicians? They are all very well qualified to do their jobs as plumbers.”

    Customer: “I do not deal with anyone but [Boss]. He is the only one that is allowed near my toilet. It is my toilet and if I want him to come clean up this s***ty mess then you are to find him and get him over here. I am a paying customer and I will not take no for an answer. You are giving me very bad customer service. I want this s*** cleaned up and I want it done now. If you do not get your boss over here, I will go on [Review Site] and destroy his perfect record.”

    Me: “I am very sorry that [Boss] is not available right now. I will call him and have him call you. In the meantime if you change your mind and would like to have one of our other technicians come out please call me back and I will schedule it right away. Is there anything else I can do for you to help you out today?”

    Customer: *huffs* “You do that and make it snappy. I don’t have all day to wait around for you, you ungrateful little b****!” *hangs up*

    (When I told my boss about her, he said that she was rich and had lots of rich friends, and he wanted their business, so I should have tried harder to make her happy!)

    Adjourning A Returning

    | NY, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests, Home Improvement

    (I manage a furniture store. A regular customer is the wife of the owner of several car dealerships in our area. Over the years she has made many purchases, always custom orders from the factory, and not once had accepted the original piece. Sometimes chairs have been reordered multiple times before she would find one she found acceptable. I see her working with one of our designers. After the sale was written, I cringe when I see she has ordered a recliner in the most expensive leather we carry. I decide to develop a plan, as we would never be able to sell this chair if she returned it. On the day of delivery, I approach the drivers.)

    Me: “Bring the chair to the showroom, please.”

    Driver: “But we have this down for delivery.”

    Me: “Please, just bring it in. You’ll see.”

    (The drivers bring it in, and I take a hammer and smash the frame of the swivel base. I then hand the drivers a new swivel base.)

    Me: “Please deliver the chair with the smashed base.”

    (Of course, on delivery, the customer saw the damage and insisted on a new chair. My drivers took the chair to their truck, replaced the damaged base and brought the same chair back into the house. She accepted the chair. That was the first (of many) custom orders she never returned!)

    Charity Begins At Home Furnishing

    , | London, England, UK | Crazy Requests, Home Improvement

    (As a charity shop, all items are donated to us. The staff are volunteers and so do not receive wages. The money made from sales goes to our cause; in this case, the care of the elderly in a local home. I approach a customer that has been looking at a sofa for some time.)

    Me: “Can I help?”

    Customer: “This sofa, isn’t it a bit expensive?”

    (Customers sometimes try to haggle or cheat us, so I’m not surprised so far.)

    Me: “Well, even though the sofa has no signs of wear and looks to be new, it has been heavily discounted. It would be triple the price from any other shop.”

    Customer: “Yeah, but this is a charity shop.”

    Me: “Yes…”

    Customer: “So I don’t see why you can’t just give it away.”

    Me: “…”

    Customer: “I rent out property, you see. I get more if the places are furnished, but if I have to buy the furniture…”

    Me: “We can’t just give things away. We raise money for the charity, which cares for elderly people.”

    Customer: “Yeah, but you get this stuff for free.”

    Me: “… “

    In A Very Angry Slate

    | Oklahoma City, OK, USA | Bad Behavior, Home Improvement, Wild & Unruly

    (A customer is trying to return a flat cart loaded with at least $400 worth of slate tile. I work as an inventory manager at this particular store.)

    Customer: “I need to return this tile.”

    Returns Associate: “Do you have a receipt or at least the box this tile came in?”

    (The customer had neither, so the return could not be processed. The argument went back and forth until finally the customer stormed out of the store. He left his cart of slate tile by the front door, then got into his vehicle and drove it in front of the store. I assumed he was going to load everything back into his vehicle. Instead he dumped the tile onto the ground and moved the cart inside. He got back in his truck and drove it over the pile of tile, back and forth three times, then sped away. All of the employees watched this with wide eyes. We grabbed a couple of trash cans and loaded up the broken pieces. I asked a manager if I could take any of the whole pieces of tile home and was told I could. I was able to completely tile my front porch with all of the whole tile! The customer could have easily sold his tile to any of the contractors or resale shops in the city but instead decided to ‘show us.’)

    Shouting Out Hot Gas

    | North Rhine Westphalia, Germany | Crazy Requests, Health & Body, Home Improvement

    (Our call centre deals with emergency calls from people who smell gas in their homes.)

    Me: “This is [Company]. My name is [My Name]. What seems to be the problem?”

    Caller: “Uhm, yes. I just wanted you to know that it smells strange in my basement. I think it may be gas.”

    Me: “Okay. Please give me your address, open all windows, and avoid plugging or unplugging any electronic devices. Our on-call service will be with you within 30 minutes.”

    Caller: *gives address* “… Wait, did you said that you will be here in half an hour?”

    Me: “Yes, as requested by law.”

    Caller: “Wait, no! I can’t stay at home. You need to come later! Can’t I make an appointment?”

    Me: “This is an emergency line. Once you reported the incident, we have to act. You can’t leave your house now.”

    Caller: “But my son needs to see his music teacher! He’s going to be the next Mozart. You’ll see!”

    Me: “Still, you are not allowed to leave. In case you won’t be there, we have to cut your gas line due to secur—”

    Caller: “NO! You won’t come NOW! This is your customer’s service?! I will tell all my friends and no one will ever call you again!”

    (After that she hung up. Fortunately, the mechanic met her at the door and could check her installation. It was leaky. She still refused to stay, so we shut her down. She wasn’t pleased.)

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