I'd give it '0' if I could! The only decent thing about my entire experience was the Hovells delivery men. They were excellent. Shame about the god-awful customer service for the rest of the business.
As a Customer Experience Manager, I am generally extremely tolerant.
However, ordered a LOT of furniture for my lounge from Hovells Norwich... online. Did not receive a phone call to arrange delivery, despite leaving them an adequate amount of time to contact me as promised (indeed as stated within the sales information and confirmation email).
Had to call up, only to be told they'd 'forgotten' to call me to arrange delivery. It would be at least another fortnight before a delivery could be arranged (please note that we had already paid extra for a split delivery of our items due to stock availability). As such, I agreed to go to the warehouse and do however many trips necessary to get what I could in my Ford Fiesta to ensure that I had some furniture in my home! Three trips later and we were only awaiting a sideboard which was out of stock.
So...the anticipated arrival date of the sideboard comes and goes with no contact from Hovells by any of the telephone numbers or email addresses they have for my husband and I. Only after emailing a very blunt email to them did we get a call (and even that took days).
They did agree to deliver the sideboard (how generous) but under no circumstances could they do this on a weekend and neither could they provide any confirmation of either a morning or afternoon, so I had to use a day of my holiday entitlement to sit around waiting for them. I did ask if it was possible to be early on the delivery sheet, given that we do live near the warehouse. Again, was told this couldn't be guaranteed, but I would get a call 30-45 mins before they were due to arrive. So, imagine my surprise when I get a phone call whilst not at home from Hovells delivery drivers to state that they're outside my house. I apologised and explained that I was told they'd call first. They were excellent chaps and were happy to wait the 5 mins until I got home and were very understanding - indeed very apologetic as they hadn't been advised I would get a call.
I did explain to them that whilst we still have a number of rooms to furnish in our house, because of the extremely poor service we'd received, we would be very unlikely to ever spend any money with Hovells again. They were understanding of this and advised they'd pass this on to the office staff.
We have found another company who sell the exact same stuff (they even use the same pictures from the suppliers) and they are cheaper (Furniture Barn - I'd highly recommend them).
BUT - I did think that I'd just give Hovells a call as there were two more things I wanted and as they are a local business, I'd try to give them another shot.
I found what I wanted online and called the office to see if they could do a deal, given that I've a) had poor service from them and b) I can get the same things cheaper elsewhere (Hovells brag about their price-match).
I was advised by a very abrupt employee that they can't take any money off anything that's priced online. I explained that I can get them cheaper elsewhere and was told 'OK then, thanks' and the call ended. No offer to price match as they promise on their website.
Perhaps Trading Standards may be interested in failure to adhere to their own sales terms???
Nobody from Hovells appears to have any interest at all in dealing with a complaint, let alone retaining business or gaining a good reputation. I'd steer well clear of them in future if anyone is looking to use them. Honestly, go to Furniture Barn instead. It'll save you money and they are very polite, friendly and will do all they can to accommodate you on the delivery side of things, where they possibly can (obviously they can't exactly deliver at a specific time on a specific day - we do need to be realistic here people!).
Like other reviewers, I found their customer service to be appalling. After taking my money immediately for an item advertised as being in stock, it arrived a month later. That's when the fun really started - it was obviously damaged, furthermore the damage revealed that the item was veneered MDF (advertised as solid oak). I contacted Hovells and their courier within 10 minutes. 2 days later I received a standard reply stating that I must take photos to send to them, after which they would consider my claim. This is in obvious contravention of their legal obligations to provide a full and expedient refund. The matter remains unresolved; I intend to make a claim via my credit card and involve trading standards.
My advice - avoid www.hovells.co.uk at all costs.
Ordered a piece of furniture in October, which the website said was in stock. Called hovells to check the website was correct and was told it was in stock. I ordered it and paid in full. I was then told a few days later that it wasnt in stock and would be in in a few days. A few days went by and i called again, and was told a few more weeks. This went on for a total of 18 weeks when it finally came into stock. After dozens and dozens of phone calls to arrange delivery, none of which were actually answered, i gave in and collected it myself from the warehouse. I was then met by a complete jobsworth at the warehouse claiming he doesn't know what to do as the computers are down today. Eventually he realised it was actually possible to leave his chair and go and look in the warehouse for my order.
Throughout the 18 week wait, no one ever contacted me to say there were delays or why, everything was left for me to contact them, which is fine in theory, however they almost never answer the phones, and when they do a clueless member of staff exclaims 'I dont know, i'll find out and ring you back' which they subsequently never do. If you leave a message on voicemail, no one gets back to you.
All in all, they have been the worst company i have ever had the misfortune of dealing with, and certainly never will again. Alright they are cheaper than most places, but you can see why. Its worth paying a little more to buy the stuff from a retailer who actually has a clue how to run a business.
Pay peanuts, you get monkeys!
I ordered 3 items in the same set for my front room. The ordering process was really easy and i felt the furniture seemed very good value compared to others.
When my order was confirmed i was told it would be 1-2 weeks for delivery. After 3-4 weeks and me checking the whereabouts of my order a number of times, i had an email to say that the bookcase had come into the warehouse damaged so they couldnt send it out and had no more in that set so would have to refund it which they did and thats fine. The rest of my order was then to be picked up by the courier which would take 10 days to arrange a delivery date!!! how can it possibly take that long!! when i complained, and explained to the delivery service that i had waited so long they did agree to upgrade our delivery for nothing and deliver on the saturday which is one positive thing.
My order was delivered this morning, the boxes looked intact, until we opened them and discovered that the entertainments unit was damaged on the corner, looked like it had been dropped. The coffee table was a totally different colour as the entertainments unit, surely if its from the same set it should match....that was the whole point!!
Needless to say after almost 7 weeks of waiting we still do not have any furniture i can use....absolutely ridiculous!!!
i ordered 2 chest of drawers on the internet, recieved a confirmation E-mail immediately. next day recieved a further E-Mail invoice a week later had a further E-mail telling me the goods were being despatched and another saying they would be delivered the next day.
on delivery the goods were very well packed and i am very impressed with the quality they are made of solid oak and the finish is superb
I bought from hovells.co.uk because of its competitive furniture costs. Navigation and placing the order was a pleasant enough experience, though their delivery process is much to be admired.
Items on the site have stock information, so when it says that a product is in stock I would have expected a quick dispatch. After a week of waiting for a dispatch notice (or a change on my account for the delivery status) I had to call customer service about where my product was. The lady I spoke to was helpful, informing me that it was dispatched the other day to the courier and from that point it could take 10 working days. I do not understand why it took a week for them to send it to the courier or the reason why they could not have kept me updated about the stage of the delivery.
The courier took the full 10 working days to deliver...
When the product arrived it was to a good standard for the price paid, but I would only suggest hovells.co.uk if you do not need your items in any hurry.
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