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Five questions about... rights in the sales


What rights? It's buyer beware if you snap up a bargain, isn't it?

Far from it. Just because a shop or online retailer is flogging off something at a fraction of a previous price, that doesn't mean it can sell you rubbish.

So do my normal consumer rights apply?

Yep. When you buy sales items you have exactly the same statutory rights as you do when you buy stuff at full price. That means anything sold to you must be fit for purpose or as described. However, that means if an item is described as faulty when sold, you can't take it back later because it's broken.

What about if I change my mind?

That's down to individual retailers. While most firms will allow you to exchange things normally, they may have a different policy on sale items. You need to check with the store you're spending at.

What about if I can't find the receipt?

That can happen. But as long as you are able to show some other proof of purchase, such as a credit card bill or bank statement, the retailer still has to honour your rights.

Anything else I should know?

Check prices online before you buy. Items may still be cheaper elsewhere even if a retailer claims it has a half-price sale or similar huge discounts.