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Mary M.

2 Level 2 Contributor
  • 10 Reviews
  • 66 Helpful Votes
  • 0 Thank Yous

Experience: Clothing & Fashion, Shopping, Home & Garden

Member since June 2015

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10 Reviews by Mary


It took me a few days to find a decent condo in a small North Carolina mountain town for me and two dogs to stay while our home is undergoing a renovation. I was all set, paid deposits, including a huge one for the renovation, and started to make other plans. It came to a halt when I received a cancellation notice. VRBO sent out a general message saying the place was unsafe and warned people not to deal with the owner directly. It was just plain weird. It took multiple phone calls and emails, and I got nowhere with the supposed VRBO security person who would tell me nothing. As a former reporter and one who has visited the town where I am staying for the last 15 years, I checked and confirmed that nothing was dangerous in the small town. Furthermore, all I could find was a conviction from 20 years ago for the owner, who long ago paid his debt. It is history.

But the bigger question is how much does this operation vet the properties shown online? When I searched, I found shacks and dumps where I would not stay. How does anyone know who owns these places? Does anyone from VRBO actually inspect the properties? You are better off renting from a reputable company.

When I complained, all I got was a notice telling me I would be removed from the website and be forgotten or some kind of crazy verbiage. It was offensive and insulting. It made me feel like VRBO was judging me as an unfit renter. But then again, I wouldn't want to rent from here. You might end up staying at a criminal enterprise. You might be raped if someone there has a key. I don't think this operation is up to the standards of even an average hotel, and this assessment comes from someone who wrote about travel and hotels for a number of national publications.

I don't know about you, but I want reliability once I book. I did receive a total refund. Then, I called the place that had the condo and rebooked directly, saving myself $250, most of which were the extra fees and commission that VRBO demands. It seems to care about the money, and, even though most of these platforms, say they can't be sued or responsible, VRBO obviously thinks it would be liable if something happened.

Let the buyer beware.


I didn't buy anything or plan to do so. If you want to do that, it is up to you, and you will find bargains. I was interested in selling as I do locally with consignment stores. It represented itself as a consignment store and listed an array of nicer clothing manufacturers, so I thought why not make a little mad money? Well, you really don't. They seem to have a low sliding scale. They took an unworn, tagged top that cost more than $100 and priced it at $13. It is not really what Good Will or a place like that does, which is to have a set price on items, regardless of brand--like $3 for a blouse. Once I saw what was going on, I tried in vain to stop it. You get cut off on the toll-free line, which seems to be quite limited. There is no chat. Email is backed up for weeks. I feel like I have been raped. Someone is making a lot of money off donated clothes and laughing all the way to the bank. These clothes could make their way to worthy thrift stores that actually help people and animals in need. I find this entire enterprise disgusting, immoral and unethical.

Tip for consumers:
I would not. If they are encouraging people to donate items and not treating them fairly, then how can you expect them to treat a buyer well.

Products used:
I did not. I donated three bags of clothes so that this company could make a fast buck. It represented itself as both a thrift store and a consignment store. It is not the latter.


If you are in one of the 30 U.S. markets where McClatchy operates a news company, this might affect you--especially if you cancel your subscription. It happened to me in North Carolina, but I was told by an executive that the corporate company in California was directing the effort to collect from delinquent accounts. Well, delinquent accounts are hardly those who cancel a subscription, are they?

As a former journalist, I have been a local subscriber all my life. I switched to digital in recent years but still took a physical newspaper on the weekend. The paper was dwindling, and the digital service was unreliable. For more than a year, I squabbled with local techs there about the fact that McClatchy's own ads for events were covering the content. Then, there also were McClatchy ads about subscriptions. It made no sense to me to have these ads since I already did subscribe. It was a pointless exercise.

Finally, earlier this year, I canceled the subscription. I paid June 15 for another quarter. By September, I was officially blocked on the website. Despite what I did, the papers kept coming on weekends. I tossed them into a recycling bin.

In late October, I received what looked like bill from McClatchy. It was from A. R. M. Solutions Inc., a collection agency. I was being dunned for $46.31, which covered another quarter. I was furious and called the local publisher. Within 30 minutes, someone called me back. I told him that I did not owe money. I had canceled the subscription a while back.

The executive said that the McClatchy corporate office was doing this to all "delinquent" subscribers. He said he would take care of the charge, and he did. But then he sent me a special deal on a subscription to review. It is still sitting in my queue. I have other ways to get local news. And really would anyone sign up again only to have content blocked and have another bill from a collection agency in their future.

No wonder some newspapers are going under. This is not way to resolve problems. If you do subscribe, check the ownership. If it is McClatchy and you decide to cancel, put it in writing to the local publisher and to the corporate offices. Let the reader beware.

Tip for consumers:
I can't recommend it anymore.


For a number of years, I have received newsletters from Houzz, and by all appearances, it seemed a first-rate source for decor. I ordered a coffee table during the Black Friday sale. While I did not expect a masterpiece or a fine piece of furniture, it was a piece of junk. They sent everything but the nails to assemble it. Of course, you don't notice that it needs assembly because they have deftly obscured that information. They advertise a 30-day return, but you have to pay. My 30-day return was reduced to 14 days so they could keep the money.

With any unfamiliar company, I always use my AmEx. I am doing a chargeback, and, as a longtime customer, I am hoping they will take care of the shipping charges.

I am unsubscribing from the website as I think they are a bunch of scammers. If you absolutely need the design information (which can be found many other places), fine. If you like any of the items, get the information and go to another reputable website to order it.

There are too many ethical websites out there where consumers will be treated courteously and fairly.

Tip for consumers:
Be careful. Most of the items can be found elsewhere. I wouldn't order from Houzz ever.

Products used:


Would you really expect anyone to stick with DirecTv after the incidents listed below occurred?

1. Sometime around the last week of September, my television service was out. Someone came the next day and redid all the interior wiring, spending about five to six hours but no service.

2. The following day I waited three hours for someone to show up. Two kids came supposedly to redo the exterior wiring. I left. They left. TVs worked. No paperwork was presented. When I returned, I discovered wires hanging all over the back of my house and wires tacked on top of my vinyl siding. Instead of taking a photo of the existing wires and redoing it, they threw it up haphazardly.

3. I called and complained about the defacing of my property. No one asked me before doing it. Someone returned and basically fixed the wiring. So now, we are into three days of my time because of incompetence. I have pin holes in my vinyl siding. No way to repair that, and no way to match the 20-year-old vinyl siding either.

4. At this point, I decided I did not need a second receiver. I called and downgraded my service. It took FOUR phone calls to get a box and a label to return this working Genie to the appropriate parties. Problem is that whoever answers does not understand English and knows only a few phrases.

5. Somewhere, along with these phone call, several empty boxes were sent here, but without mailing labels.

6. I put up with an overheating receiver for several weeks until I could not stand it anymore. I had to go through this same ordeal of trying to communicate with people who could not understand what I was saying. Finally, after four or five phone calls, I got a receiver, and I let it sit because I could not stand to go through another ordeal.

7. Finally on November 3, I hooked it up. It would not activate. I called technical services. He tried twice to activate it. Then, he told me I needed to have a tech come to my house. I said NO. All the wiring had already been redone. Obviously, something was wrong with the receiver I was sent. The TV message said it was inappropriate for the current dish I had. I asked for a label to send this receiver back. I hooked up my old receiver, which did NOT have the non-connect message.

8. Then, I tried once again to get a label to return the receiver. It is still sitting in my house as of Nov. 8. The customer service people tell me to throw it in a recycling bin or return it to recycling. I know better. If it is new, and it works, it should not be thrown away. I don't want to be charged for a missing receiver.

9. I tried to watch TV with my old receiver from Nov. 3 to 7, and it did not work. On one of the calls to request a label, I discovered that the tech had left the new receiver's numbers on the service and disconnected my old receiver. I demanded that they fix that immediately. I also asked for a credit for five days of non-working service.

10. I dared again to ask for a new receiver. I got the standard so-sorry fake apologies in the two or three sentences that these non-English speakers know. Apparently, the request was granted because I received notices from FedEx.

11. Someone from Boise, Idaho, started calling me saying she was from your office. As a longtime journalist, I know that your office is not in Idaho and that was either a scam or some person from a call center. Some of us are not stupid enough to fall for something like that. And I have no idea where she got my information anyway.

12. Tonight I tried again to ask for a label and was told that I could take the receiver to an AT&T store. My, my. Why wasn't I told that before?

13. At 5:23 pm, I received a notice that my package had been delivered. I went to my door, and nothing was there. I called FedEx and they are checking on it. Apparently, it was delivered elsewhere.

No one wants to put up with this nonsense.


I love the looks of so many of the glasses. When I was in New York, I went to a store and tried sunglasses on. Later, I ordered them online without much trouble. They came, and I am getting nothing but compliments on them The quality is great, and they were only $95 with all the trimming, including polarization. Prescriptions are much cheaper here. I highly recommend the company.


This site is deceptive. You would do better taking nice clothes to a local consignment shop. Twice I have ordered items that were discontinued on here. The first time, the item was frayed, worn and the wrong size. No returns are allowed unless the chief Dumpmaster decides the description was in error. I didn't bother. I just threw it away. The second time, the item stank with perfume or detergent or something. I laundered it and it did no good. The item is sitting my garage. So far the site keep pelting me with emails that make no sense. I made an attempt to file a complaint. Ultimately, I went to American Express and filed a dispute. Usually, that is the end of it.


For 15 years, I ordered from this website, which was formerly owned by doctors. Indeed, some of the skincare lines sold on it require seminars and medical training. Sadly the site has been sold. The website is horrible. The customer service is nonexistent. You are much better off heading to your local aesthetician at a "real" medical facility or going to Sephora or Ulta to buy makeup products. It was convenient and always reliable, but not anymore.


Refer to my old review. Then come back. Not much has changed with old Lulu. It is same old thing of changing product sizing and fit and not the label. Same old thing of no returns and insulting emails. If the product does not perform well in the gym because of these changes, it is your tough luck. This time it was a cuckoo online who sent me pants made for ostriches or beachcombers. She didn't know the difference between an inseam and the length. Duh! At the store, they sell me a product with the same name. After one wearing at the gym, it was obvious it was a different pant. Now the online company has three pairs of pants and refuses to credit my Amex, which has all the charges. Meanwhile, the CEO resigned, and the shareholders are up in arms with losses. Does this tell you something? Go somewhere else from now on.

Tip for consumers:
I wouldn't recommend it.


I ended up with an item that someone else bid on using my information. Proxibid threatened me when I questioned the transaction. I discovered there were two accounts for me, both with my credit card, and I only created one. These competed against each other on an item I was "watching." I doubt I will ever see the item and now have to cancel my credit card. Proxibid has ZERO customer service and a low level of security. EBayis much better.

Mary Has Earned 66 Votes

Mary M.'s review of Proxibid earned 21 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of thredUP earned 8 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of Lululemon earned 7 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of Houzz earned 6 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of DirecTV earned 3 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of SkinStore earned 10 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of Poshmark earned 9 Very Helpful votes

Mary M.'s review of SkinStore earned 2 Well Said votes

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