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NC5 Investigates: Consumer Alert

BBB Lists Companies Consumers Can Do Without

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It's not unusual for businesses to get complaints from customers from time to time.

The Better Business Bureau said there are some companies here in Middle Tennessee that have a lot of complaints and do little or even nothing to make things right. Those are the companies that end up on the BBB's semi-annual list of businesses that consumers can do without.

Consumer investigator Jennifer Kraus talked with BBB President Kathleen Calligan about who made the latest list.

"We're very serious about this list," said Calligan.

The Better Business Bureau said the companies on its list ignore customer complaints and engage in misleading advertising.

"We have to tell the public that these companies don't belong here," said Calligan.

Blue World Pools made the list because the company's ads claim they'll sell you a pool for just $299. The BBB said the company just uses that to get you in so they can sell you another more expensive pool.

"How much is the pool they want to sell you?" asked Kraus.

"About $14,000 to $18,000," answered Calligan.

The ads for the Loud 'N Clear claim the small device can give you extraordinary hearing. When NewsChannel 5 Investigates recently put their claims to the test, the Loud 'N Clear failed miserably.

"It is really a blatant example of false and misleading advertising," said Calligan.

The Summerstone Nursery in McMinnville sells to gardeners around the country through its website. Customers said they can't plant what the nursery sends them.

"This is the very quote from consumers who complained. 'Dead sticks arrived. I was supposed to get a pear tree. Nothing but a dead stick arrived,'" said Calligan.

AA Notary in Nashville hires notaries around the country to help with long distance real estate transactions. According to complaints filed with the BBB, these notaries said they do the work and then don't get paid.

The BBB first warned consumers about Real Living Properties earlier this month. Based in Clarksville, the company handles rental properties, often for soldiers who have been deployed.

"Unfortunately, this company doesn't do that. They rent the property and they never pass that rental money along to the property owner," said Calligan.

In fact, Marjorie Gwen Abbott, the owner of Real Living Properties was arrested two weeks ago and charged with theft.

Customers of Elite Auction Sales in Murfreesboro have complained to the BBB that they're not getting what they should from the company.

Calligan said customers tell the BBB, "They don't get the price that the merchandise sold for or the company fails to return their merchandise if it isn't sold."

The BBB has gotten dozens of complaints about All My Sons Moving.

The complaints include, "Taking way too long to do their job and they do charge by the hour and having unprofessional people on the job that have no idea how to effectively and safely pack up and move someone's furniture," according to the head of the BBB.

The final company on the list, Bob Neener Military Certificates also goes by the name Citation Express. It sells replacement military documents to veterans, but many said they have never received what they have paid for.

The Better Business Bureau said they only add companies to this list after the businesses have been notified repeatedly about customers' complaints and given multiple opportunities to fix the problems or address the issues.

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