TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — First, there was a rush to get presents under the tree. Now there’s a rush to return some of those gifts.
Although we try, sometimes buying the perfect holiday gift just doesn’t happen.
In fact, the National Retail Federation estimates 18 percent of holiday gifts are returned each year. Those unwanted presents could be traded in for cash or store credit, but you need to know about their return policies.
That’s especially important this year, as the Better Business Bureau warns inflation is taking a bite off profits and 60 percent of retailers surveyed say they are toughening return policies, with shorter deadlines, restocking fees or both.
Here are some deadlines to keep in mind:
If you have unwanted electronics, you may want to return them first. The shortest return period is typically on electronics. Apple, for example, has a return deadline of Jan. 8. Best Buy is Jan. 14. Some other major retailers have January return deadlines too. Target, for example, has a deadline of Jan. 24. For Amazon and Walmart, it is Jan. 31.
Remember, a lot of stores want items in good condition so they can easily resell them, so keep gifts in original packaging when possible.
If you’re buying from a website that sends you to a third-party seller, make sure you check that store’s policy too, it could differ from brick and motor stores.