Advice for shoppers putting items on layaway
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- A lot of you are starting your holiday shopping, and layaway may seem like a good option. But it's important you know exactly what you're signing up for when you agree to pay later.
"I'm shopping for my son, Mickey Mouse Dancers and stuff," says a shopper.
Retailers are working hard to make your holiday shopping a cinch. And many are doing that with layaway.
"It's easy and they work with you, so I like it," says a shopper.
Here's how it works. You pick what you want and instead of paying the entire sticker price, you make payments. Then once it's paid off, you take it home. Shoppers we spoke with say it makes those dream purchases, a reality.
"I go for big tickets, like TVs or something like that," says a shopper. "It's more convenient when you have a family of 5," says another shopper.
But don't go overboard and buy more than you can afford. The Better Business Bureau reminds you, layaway is just like signing any contract.
"Make sure you read the terms and conditions," says Katie Robison with the BBB.
Many layaway plans require a down payment, usually of 10%-25%. Some may include a fee if you can't make all the required payments by the deadline.
"Also, what happens if you change your mind after starting to make payments towards the product," says Katie.
The BBB says some retailers only give you back part of your money. Others sometimes offer gift card refunds, that can only be used at that store. Another reason to know your rights?
"We've heard from consumers, that after they finally purchase this big ticket item, the item wasn't actually in store," says Katie.
In some cases, delivery wasn't made until after the holiday. So make sure you know when you're expected to get your hands on your purchase. Knowing the details about your layaway plan could be the difference between a gloomy or happy holiday season.
"Try it, it's easy, it's more convenient really," says a shopper.
So here's the Contact 13 bottom line. Read the fine print before signing on the dotted line. Keep in mind, each store has its own set of rules and not all items may be eligible for layaway. And some stores this year, have made changes to their policies.
Learn more about layaway at each of these stores' websites: