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  Reply # 1062736 10-Jun-2014 16:37
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networkn: 

Sadly this isn't the case. I have  friend who runs a computer retail outlet, and he recently had to replace a 3 year old $420 laptop he made $34 on for a customer who wouldn't accept it wasn't reasonable. Nightmare.

Consumer in the instances I have spoken to them, treat all computers the same, regardless of value.



I believe it is the 'value ' of the item, not the price paid. eg If two people buy exactly the same item, but one is on special and 30% off, while the others isn't, the one who paid less and got the good deal shouldn't have less consumer protection than those people who didn't get the good deal.

My opinion is that the retailer has to build this risk into the price that they charge. If they are only making a tiny margin, then that is their fault for charging that figure. There is no one forcing them to sell at a low price. Often retailers will be charging a lower figure to undercut their competition, and if they are playing that game, they are taking a risk. If they are selling at a low margin then they should be selling large quantities, and are making their money that way.  Certainly I sometimes feel for the retailer, but sometimes I also feel for the consumer, as some are provided by incorrect information consumer rights by the retailer. I know an elderly couple whose bar fridge packed up after 3.5 years. They went back to the retailer, and they told them it was out of warranty and as they no longer imported that model it couldn't be repaired, they would need to buy a new one. Where under the CGA, it may have been repaired or replaced free of charge. But they didn't have the consumer knowedge and didn't want to waste time disputing it.

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  Reply # 1062742 10-Jun-2014 16:46
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dejadeadnz: Back to the particular example. Unless the item was second hand, I don't think in this day and age it's unreasonable for a consumer who makes occasional person use (say an hour or two a day) of an electrical appliance to expect it to last 3 years. Does this mean this is or isn't what the CGA requires? Well, there's deliberately no clear line for obvious reasons. To be honest -- and this is coming from a guy with a very commercial approach to things and works for a corporate -- I have very little sympathies for all the people that whinge about unreasonable customers. They are but a cost of doing business. I know all the "But things like that make things more expensive for others too!" arguments but my retort is that there are plenty of dodgy shop owners too and human relations are inherently imperfect and difficult.                




I do agree with that. This is why consumer come out with guidelines of how long appliances should last. Lower quality brands or no name  brands maybe expected to last a shorter period of time, while top quality brands maybe expected to last longer. Otherwise it is impossible to really know how long something should last.

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 1062800 10-Jun-2014 18:23
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networkn:
jonathan18:
networkn: Why should a $300-$500 computer sold at clearance at a retailer, have the same 3 year+ warranty of a computer 10 times the cost. I don't think it should.


In realilty, I don't think the law treats all goods the same - the cost paid for a product would be taken into account as to how long that product should last.

One reference I read suggested that the CGA uses the terms "reasonable" and "acceptable" expressly as they are open-ended, therefore contextual (dependent on cost, condition, usage...). This, of course, makes it muchmore arbitrary...


Sadly this isn't the case. I have  friend who runs a computer retail outlet, and he recently had to replace a 3 year old $420 laptop he made $34 on for a customer who wouldn't accept it wasn't reasonable. Nightmare.

Consumer in the instances I have spoken to them, treat all computers the same, regardless of value.



If it's sold as new why shouldn't it be expected to last a reasonable time? Does a retailer not have any legal option to recover their loss from the supplier in these cases?

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  Reply # 1062815 10-Jun-2014 19:03
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mattwnz: I do agree with that. This is why consumer come out with guidelines of how long appliances should last. Lower quality brands or no name  brands maybe expected to last a shorter period of time, while top quality brands maybe expected to last longer. Otherwise it is impossible to really know how long something should last.


Exactly. How reasonable would it be to expect a no-brand $150 tablet to last as long as a $1000 iPad? Consideration of such matters has to be relative. Does anyone know if the DT has equivalent measures as the Consumer life expectancy data? Would be interesting reading, especially how it considers the various factors like cost.

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  Reply # 1062818 10-Jun-2014 19:14
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mattwnz:


My opinion is that the retailer has to build this risk into the price that they charge. If they are only making a tiny margin, then that is their fault for charging that figure. There is no one forcing them to sell at a low price. Often retailers will be charging a lower figure to undercut their competition, and if they are playing that game, they are taking a risk. If they are selling at a low margin then they should be selling large quantities, and are making their money that way. 


The computer/peripherals retailing business in NZ is completely screwed. Far too many shops engage in exactly the behaviour your describe. This and other reasons such as being unable to make enough money from providing diagnostics/services often result in people outright lying to customers. So many shops have on their invoices "Our stuff carry a one year warranty blah blah" type blurb and when you buy items that obviously and are well-known to have longer warranties, like Intel CPUs, and take things back to them after a year they play dumb and stupid. Many shops either deliberately do not or aren't equipped to store the serial number of peripherals they sell on their systems. So should you lose your receipt and need your warranty, they just rub their hands in glee.

Fortunately there are some notable exceptions that provide both fair prices and excellent service, without any of the above BS. I only buy from one place now for my needs, with the occasional purchase at PB Tech thrown in (they aren't absolutely fantastic but aren't half as bad as most places).



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  Reply # 1062819 10-Jun-2014 19:33
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jonathan18:
mattwnz: I do agree with that. This is why consumer come out with guidelines of how long appliances should last. Lower quality brands or no name  brands maybe expected to last a shorter period of time, while top quality brands maybe expected to last longer. Otherwise it is impossible to really know how long something should last.


Exactly. How reasonable would it be to expect a no-brand $150 tablet to last as long as a $1000 iPad? Consideration of such matters has to be relative. Does anyone know if the DT has equivalent measures as the Consumer life expectancy data? Would be interesting reading, especially how it considers the various factors like cost.


I don't know how qualified or clued up the people making the decisions are, on these sorts of things. Obviously a $150 el cheapo no name android tablet shouldn't be expected to last as long as an apple ipad, as it is lower value and quality. But whether the DT look at that indepth, I don't know.

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  Reply # 1062862 10-Jun-2014 20:59
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mattwnz:
networkn: 

Sadly this isn't the case. I have  friend who runs a computer retail outlet, and he recently had to replace a 3 year old $420 laptop he made $34 on for a customer who wouldn't accept it wasn't reasonable. Nightmare.


I believe it is the 'value ' of the item, not the price paid. eg If two people buy exactly the same item, but one is on special and 30% off, while the others isn't, the one who paid less and got the good deal shouldn't have less consumer protection than those people who didn't get the good deal.

My opinion is that the retailer has to build this risk into the price that they charge. If they are only making a tiny margin, then that is their fault for charging that figure. There is no one forcing them to sell at a low price.


So, by increasing the price of the goods to cover the cost of out-of-warranty repairs isn't the retailer effectively forcing you to buy an 'extended warranty'? The same sort of extended warranty that advocates of the CGA are so staunchly opposed to?

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  Reply # 1063039 10-Jun-2014 23:01
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alasta: 
So, by increasing the price of the goods to cover the cost of out-of-warranty repairs isn't the retailer effectively forcing you to buy an 'extended warranty'? The same sort of extended warranty that advocates of the CGA are so staunchly opposed to?


Any business that wants to continue being in business for a while need to make sure that they can pay their rent, staff and have enough left over to deal with warranties. You can only ignore such things if you are a fly by night company and don't plan on staying in business.

It seems to me like one of the problems for retailers in NZ is that they in many cases have to compete with US web shops, which often have lower taxes (GST/VAT) and higher volumes - as well as lower purchasing prices. (At least if you are not parallel importing, but that probably leaves you completely alone to deal with warranties).

There has been a VAT-limit of only NZD 40 on imports to Norway for a long time now. (And the GST is at 25%), so norwegian businesses are not as effected by foreign web shops as New Zealand companies are. That might be something to look at for NZ politicians (wrong party at power now for that to happen).

Not great for consumers, but allows you to have sustainable national companies that are not driven out of business by foreign companies.




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  Reply # 1063211 11-Jun-2014 10:17
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And this is what happens when technology becomes widespread and simple to use, stupid people start buying it and then complain. Its up to the consumer to research the product not the supplier, as long as the OP supplied the correct specs then you are in the right and theres nothing more you have to do. 

If it goes to small claims I would try and recover any costs you have occurred because of the idiot.

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  Reply # 1063222 11-Jun-2014 10:27
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If retailers were then to start charging higher prices to cover potential CGA/warranty issues, the very next thread on Geekzone would then be whinging about exorbitant prices charged by retailers, how they are ripping everyone off and its cheaper to buy overseas / online.

You can't have it both ways. pay a high price and feel reasonably assured you will get the backup you expect, or pay as little as possible for goods but don't be surprised when retailers try and wriggle out of situations or don't go the extra mile to see you satisfied.

Quality
Service
Price

Pick 2, you can't have 3 all the time 

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  Reply # 1063232 11-Jun-2014 10:34
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sen8or: If retailers were then to start charging higher prices to cover potential CGA/warranty issues, the very next thread on Geekzone would then be whinging about exorbitant prices charged by retailers, how they are ripping everyone off and its cheaper to buy overseas / online.
 


Given that some things are already ~25% more expensive for no obvious reason, there isn't the scope for other price hikes.

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  Reply # 1063282 11-Jun-2014 11:40
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Glassboy:
sen8or: If retailers were then to start charging higher prices to cover potential CGA/warranty issues, the very next thread on Geekzone would then be whinging about exorbitant prices charged by retailers, how they are ripping everyone off and its cheaper to buy overseas / online.
 


Given that some things are already ~25% more expensive for no obvious reason, there isn't the scope for other price hikes.


I look forward to your successful and lucrative business in retail.........

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  Reply # 1063351 11-Jun-2014 13:41
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sen8or: If retailers were then to start charging higher prices to cover potential CGA/warranty issues, the very next thread on Geekzone would then be whinging about exorbitant prices charged by retailers, how they are ripping everyone off and its cheaper to buy overseas / online.

You can't have it both ways. pay a high price and feel reasonably assured you will get the backup you expect, or pay as little as possible for goods but don't be surprised when retailers try and wriggle out of situations or don't go the extra mile to see you satisfied.

Quality
Service
Price

Pick 2, you can't have 3 all the time 


So much THIS. 

The other 3 are : 

Quality, Features, Price.

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  Reply # 1063360 11-Jun-2014 13:50
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This thread is an eye opener for me. Im a self employed plumber / gasfitter. Which means I install alot of things like hot water cylinders which are both expensive and which are expected to last a long time. The thought that someone could have a valid claim against me for the entire replacement cost of a 10 year old hot water cylinder is scary. Especially as alot of cylinders are only guaranteed for 5 years by the manufacturer. And that only covers the cylinder itself. The element and thermostat normally only have a 1 year guarantee.

I will now be charging a minimum 20% margin on all major items like hot water cylinders unless the customer is a business. And will be steering customers to Mitre 10, Bunnings ect to directly purchase things like hot water cylinders. So I won't have to cover the CGA risk on things I have no control over. Yet the silly part is if I were to copy property developers and regularly liquidate my company and setup another one. (once per year maybe) Then I won't have long term CGA risk.

I Wonder if more business will spring up that either only sell to other business's. Or will charge high retail prices and then offer free accounts with big discounts to other business's. (2 tier pricing).

The CGA should be changed so Sellers / Manufacturers have to specify the "Half life" of the item they are selling. (Age where they expect that 50% of their product would have suffered a fault that the manufacturer doesn't intend to be repairable) And then require that should an item Suffer an unrepairable fault before it's half life. The seller will only be liable to cover a % of it's value based on how much longer until it's half life. (An item with a 10 year half life fails in year 5 - 50% of it's value is payable. Same item fails at year 9 - 10% of it's value is payable.) I think this will be far better than simply saying items must last a reasonable amount of time. As it makes it clear exactly how much of a guarantee must be offered, Will be an in your face way of telling people that the cheap item they are buying is exactly that - cheap. And will make it easier for manufacturers / sellers to encourage people to buy better quality products. The biggest problem with the current system is that almost every dispute over age of produce can only be settled by litigation.


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  Reply # 1063361 11-Jun-2014 13:50
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sen8or: If retailers were then to start charging higher prices to cover potential CGA/warranty issues, the very next thread on Geekzone would then be whinging about exorbitant prices charged by retailers, how they are ripping everyone off and its cheaper to buy overseas / online.

You can't have it both ways. pay a high price and feel reasonably assured you will get the backup you expect, or pay as little as possible for goods but don't be surprised when retailers try and wriggle out of situations or don't go the extra mile to see you satisfied.

Quality
Service
Price

Pick 2, you can't have 3 all the time 


That is so true. But you do have to remember that different people look for different things when they buying stuff. Some are preapred to pay more to shop in a local store, with that local service and support. Although I think the vast majority of NZers buy solely on price alone, as kiwis love to get a bargain, even if it is too good to be true. Perhaps that is why you hear of so many problems.

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