The Consumer Complaints Blog

Fighting the trained monkey in modern society.

September 23, 2010

Yookidoo Stack ‘N’ Stream Tub Fountain: International Playthings

Filed under: Miscellaneous — Editor @ 2:15 pm

In a world we are meant to be trying to preserve for our children here is a toy that will cost you $30, and only work for 4- 5 months. When I called International Playthings (who make the Yookidoo Stack ‘N’ Stream Tub Fountain to complain that thefountain in this fountain toy was no longer operating, they asked me how long I had it (4-5 months) and told me “well the motor is worn out! “It’s not a REAL motor!” Funny, it didn’t say that on the box.

Happy to replace the product if I paid to ship it to them (@ a cost of $75), I suggested that made no sense, I may as well buy 2 more for that price. The employee who covers consumer issues for International Playthings stated that the policy was “more than fair” and “what did I expect, this was a TOY!”

Please explain that to my toddler who wants it to work, and whose generation will have to find some way to landfill this toy (and all others in the Yookidoo Stack ‘N’ Stream Tub Fountain range) as it’s not expected to last for even half a year, and cannot be recycled.

What a waste. Shame on you International Playthings. Our children are important, never mind their parents’ time, & money.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

March 19, 2010

Accurate Technology group

Filed under: Miscellaneous — Editor @ 1:00 pm

I wanted to bring to your attention one unresolved case. I am requesting this posting to be published to find if someone else encountered similar situation with the said company. At same time, if there is any advice from you or your readers on what to do to protect consumer.

This incident relates to a contractor while I was building a new house in 2009. The builder had service contract with “Accurate Technology group”, Winnipeg to rough-in alarm system and wiring for cable, phone and internet. This is covered in basic cost paid to the builder. The contractor “Accurate technology group” offered to provide additional outlets at extra cost. I had chosen to get two additional outlets and four finished outlets after SHAW cable discount at $212 CDN. There was a written agreement between home owner and the contractor. Main feature of the agreement states that the contractor won’t start work until pre-payment was made in full before start of work or 50% at time of signing design work and rest before completion.

All said and done, the house was completed in late 2009. It was almost 5 months after this incident, I received a letter from the company that I owed them dues $212. During this time, I had relocated from apartment to new house and had several sessions of cleaning house. On their request to find record of payment, I searched the house twice. I have not found paperwork and receipt of payment. However, I was able to find draft of contract which clearly states that work won’t start before payment is made in full or 50% at design & rest later on. When I contacted the compant about pre-payment before start of work, they could not provide satisfactory answer to why they did not contact for several months. And how work was completed if payment was not made. The agreement paperwork is designed by them and their employees did not follow. It is their internal business failure.

I provided my side of story. Now, the contractor is threatening to take to small court. Am I obligated to pay again to ensure that the company has record of payment? Should not they be taking responsibility of this falacy, they failed to follow their own system? This has caused a lot of mental distress and at same time, his given me strength to face it. I am still searching for resources which are available for consumers protection.

I am sending you this story to find others who would have come across similar situation with this contractor or others. And how they protected themselves. Meanwhile, I will continue to search for help, wherever possible.

I will appreciate for your support in finding similarly affected people and on how they faced & protected their interests.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

February 5, 2010

How we got cheated by HDB Interiors Flooring Brokers (Tony Hellman)

Filed under: Miscellaneous — Editor @ 3:07 pm

We found this company through and after meeting with the president Tony Hellman, decided that based on what we had seen we would use him to replace the flooring in our condo. In July 2008 we signed a contract for 1100sqft of Jatoba milled in Quebec for
approximately $7.25/sqft. A day or two before our floor was supposed to be installed Tony Hellman informed us that the wood we put a $7,350 deposit on in July (it was now the end of September) was sold to another customer, but not to worry he secured a much better product
for us. Hesitantly we agreed to this new wood.

Tony Hellman installed Continental Designs Cumaru, which according to many other flooring experts (and Tony’s installer) is a Chinese product. He purchased this wood from his “supplier” Brampton Hardwood, for less than half of what he charged us and has confirmed that he provided us with 25 boxes (there are 32.7sqft per box – you do the math – we paid for 1,100 sqft of wood). We have recently had our condo remeasured and confirmed that with waste there should have been about 864sqft (so slightly more that what Tony delivered but we have
also decided to add hardwood to our powder room).

Neither Tony Hellman nor his supplier, Brampton Hardwood will provide information on the milling location of this wood. The wood is milky and has cracked in over 25% of the areas. Recently Tony arranged for an “independent flooring inspector” to inspect the wood. Rick the inspector from St. Lawrence did humidity tests and found our humidity to be perfect. He informed my husband during the visit that the floor should not be cracking and that the finish should not be milky as it is. We have never received a formal copy of the inspection but Joe Reis from Brampton Hardwood informed me over the phone that the inspection reported nothing out of the ordinary.

We have started a blog to document our troubles with HDB Interiors and Brampton Hardwood and the issues of using to find a reliable contractor.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

December 8, 2009

Toronto Community Housing

Filed under: Miscellaneous — Editor @ 12:44 pm

I have been dealing with a humming noise in my building, a Toronto community housing downtown unit, since mid of Aug 2009.

The noise was always heard during midnight and early morning. As a result, I woke up and could not sleep. I suffered most during the weekend, as it was the time when the noises were heard much louder and more frequently.

At the beginning as I could not identify where the noise came from, I called emergency line twice on two different weekends, the emergency operator confirmed that someone would come to my building to look at the problem within 6-7 hours. The truth of the matter is that no one showed up in either night and the noises were still there.

The second step was that I was calling the building superintendent, who acted quicker than others, after I contacted him second time. He showed up at my apartment and identified that the noise came from the elevators. He contacted the elevator company right way and the work they did if they really did as super said made the situation worse.  Whenever the elevators were being used, they produced big noises.

I tried different ways to cope with it, starting from using earplugs to putting pillows on my head and I even turned my living room into my bedroom. During the day times especially on weekends, the noises distracted me so much that I could not concentrate so I was forced to go to the public places to read; it also gave me headaches, heartaches, and to some point drove me crazy. I even slept at my friend’s place one night to get a sound sleep in order to prevent my breakdown. I am EXHAUSTED and literally have not slept well for months. And of course everyone went through this would break down, and I got sick. What a pity! I even could not go to work and ended up in the coffee shop to take a nap while the building was repairing the balcony.

They are just unfortunate facts; it just upsets me more when I tried to contact the office to have an appointment to see how they would resolve this matter. After unsuccessful attempts of calls and emails to supervisor and the operating manager, I have showed up at the office three times, which is located at 15 Scadding Ave, to ask them to take care of this unbearable noise issue. All the methods seemed in vain.

When you are a consumer in a retail setting, the activities are being monitored and reviewed on a continuous basis (i.e. consumer ministry/consumer protection laws). How much right do I have as a tenant of Toronto community housing towards this particular landlord which runs under the system of total monopoly? I don’t know who can really monitor them.

As a model tenant who always pays the rent on time, I deserve to ask for a quiet place to sleep. Can I stop paying rent if this issue not is being resolved? Or I just should look for some other places no matter how much more rent I need to pay? Where can I go for some fairness?

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

August 17, 2009

Wells Fargo Financial

Filed under: Miscellaneous — Editor @ 10:14 pm

We purchased a household item and had to buy it on the Store Credit card to get the deal. We made 33 of 36 monthly payments on time the 34 payment was mailed as usual but did not reach the credit company or they did not post it. We had just received the next months bill and realized the payment did not come off. Less than 24 hrs later the credit company was already phoning They phoned twice the next day and they were harassing me about the payment for the next month which isn’t even due.

It’s offensive when the credit companies don’t even check to see if you’re a good standing customer before they pick up the phone. Wells Fargo didn’t even give us time to correct the error. We even tried to contact them but we couldn’t contact by phone. They can call us several times a day but we couldn’t even find out if they had received the payment after the next bill was sent out.

I will not purchase anything on a credit card again if Wells Fargo is the financial company. I will from now on make sure none of my other financial dealings are through their company or affiliates. This really ticked me off.

Saturday Aug 1 after a 12 midnight shift. I receive a phone call again. You have to bare in mind the next payment is still not even due. That’s 5 phone calls in 6 days on a $107. payment, that went missing in the mail and we have told them we sent out another payment for both months on Friday July 24. I’ve been working every day and have not had a chance to find out if the original payment has been cashed at the bank. The error could still be on their end.

Note: This is Wells Fargo Financial Retail Services Company Canada and is associated with Wells Fargo & Company of the U.S. People, check your credit cards, Investments and Banking Affiliates and move your credit and investments out to another company. This is an absolutely ridiculous policy on the part of this Credit Card company. I intend to make sure everybody knows about this Company.

This article was submitted by one of our readers. Penciltrick cannot make any claims as to its authenticity but the article was accepted on a good faith belief that it is an accurate and truthful account of the events listed.

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