Rented dinette set comes with one chair missing

December 31, 2010 7:38:26 PM PST
Millions of people rent their furniture instead of buying it, but what happens when something goes wrong? One family turned to 7 On Your Side for answers.

One family was missing a vital part of their dinette set, not just for a couple of days, but for eight months. That's why they finally called in.

Nicole Johnson couldn't afford to buy a dinette set, so she rented one instead. A table with four chairs -- perfect for her family of four. However, you may notice, there was something missing.

"Once they delivered it, we only had three chairs," said Nicole.

The dinette set was minus one seat. So, like a game of musical chairs, it left one person out at dinner time.

"We have four people we want them to be able to have a seat there, not stand up and hold their food," said Nicole.

Nicole contacted a Rent-A-Center store where she'd leased the set for $98 per month. The store promised the chair would be delivered soon, however that was way back in May. Now, eight months later, there was still no chair. The family had to make do by splitting up for meals.

"Somebody had to eat in here [in the living room] and we couldn't eat at the kitchen table, all of us couldn't eat together. Somebody had to come in here to sit and eat," said Nicole.

Rent-A-Center told her there was a delay because the fourth chair had to be specially built. But with Thanksgiving already gone and Christmas coming, Nicole was really hoping to have the complete set. So she contacted 7 On Your Side.

"All of a sudden the chair appears!" said Nicole's mother, Diane Johnson.

"They got here an hour later with the chair," said Nicole.

Rent-A-Center tells 7 On Your Side the chair had been damaged and was out of stock. When a replacement finally built, Rent-A-Center said it tried to deliver the chair but no one was home. However, because the set was missing a piece all those months, Rent-A-Center agreed to reimburse the Johnsons for 20 percent of the rental cost.

And now all four chairs at the table and so are all four Johnsons.

"I feel complete with four chairs. Thank you," said Nicole.

If you rent furniture or other items, you should get everything that's in the contract -- don't let them tell you any different. If you don't get everything, then you can always call 7 On Your Side.