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BBB: Kalamazoo moped parts dealer receives "F" rating

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The Better Business Bureau (BBB) of West Michigan is warning costumers about "1977 Mopeds", an online vintage moped parts and accessory dealer in Kalamazoo.

The business currently has an "F" rating with the BBB on a grading scale of A+ through F. The business has 26 customer complaints against them since 2016.

"This means a lot of customers don't feel they've been treated fairly," said Better Business Bureau of West Michigan President and CEO Phil Catlett.

The majority of complaints to BBB pertain to issues with delivery, refunds, and overall problems with their products and services. For instance, several consumers have bought products and experienced multi-month wait times to receive their orders, some have yet to receive their orders altogether, while others have received product other than what they ordered.

Customers reported that any subsequent direct contact with this business then went unanswered.

Twelve of the 26 complaints are related to delivery issues.

A customer complaint from December 2016 read, "No status updates, no return phone calls, no return emails, few answered phone calls, 6 months since order, no delivery."

"They obviously have a supply chain problems where the product is not adequate and the delivery of the product is not adequate," Catlett said.

We caught up with Mopeds 1977 mopeds Owner Dan Kastner and asked him about the "F" rating.

"It sucks. I mean, I deserve it. The most angry always speak the loudest, but they deserve to. I deserve it because shipping has been really bad for the last eight months," said Kastner,

Kastner puts the much of the blame on the shipping miscues to his distributing company in Georgia and that he recently decided to part with company.

"It's basically just me doing the shipping right now, with the complaints our business sales go down so I have less business resources to deal with it," Kastner said.

In the coming weeks, Kastner said his company will release plans revealing a revamped business model, in an effort to improve customer quality.

The BBB says it has reached out to 1977 Mopeds about the complaints, and although they've responded to some, there's others that remain unresolved.

"It's our hope that Mopeds 1977 does what they need to do, so they can become trustworthy," Catlett said.

The BBB reminds customers of several helpful tips to mitigate risk while shopping online:

  • Be a savvy shopper. When shopping online, be sure to take your time, and read the fine print before submitting your order. Look for the return policy; although many online orders can be returned for a full refund, others have restocking fees. Some items cannot be returned; know before you buy
  • Keep documentation of your order. Save a copy of the confirmation page or email confirmation until you receive the item and are satisfied. Be sure to know and understand the return policy and keep this documented with your purchase records
  • Do your homework. Before making a purchase, it is wise to use BBB.org and other reputable websites to research the company thoroughly, and especially so with companies that are smaller, newer, or not very well-known
  • Consider past customer experiences. It is most likely you won’t be the first person who to buy from a particular website, so use that to your advantage and find customer reviews and ratings. Websites like BBB.com show you verified customer reviews and complaints to help you make the right choice.
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