7 Stores with the Best Return Policies

Even frequent shoppers come across recently purchased items that turn out to be different than expected. Common reasons why shoppers return goods to the store include dissatisfaction, wrong product, buyer’s remorse, product recall, or sizing issues. Shopping can be a hassle when dealing with retail companies that have firm return policies. From the company’s perspective, stern return policies protect the business against fraudulent activity. There are usually stipulations that restrict returns on specific items or products that are not accompanied by a receipt or in optimal condition. It is also common for retail stores to offer exchanges or store credit when the original payment method isn’t an option. While most retailers make their policies visible to their consumers, these policies could easily go unnoticed since the intent of making a purchase isn't to return it. Knowing which companies offer lenient policies on returns can make shopping far less stressful. Here is a list of the top 7 companies that have the best return policies.

The Best Return Policies

1. Ikea

Ikea is quite generous with their returns on merchandise, offering their consumers 365 days to change their minds. If the consumer decides that the item isn’t a good fit, Ikea will return the product for the full refund amount. If the receipt is misplaced within the 365 days, Ikea will make the effort to locate the purchase in their system and offer a credit of equal or lesser value if they are unable to retrieve the purchase history.

2. Costco

This discount retailer stumps Ikea’s lengthy return policy by offering no time limit on purchased items. Consumers can return their merchandise to the nearest Costco for a refund in the form of cash or a check. There is an exception with goods such as electronics. Items including TVs, tablets, cell phones, computers, and cameras must be returned within 90 days from the date of sale. Also, a receipt is not necessary since the purchase can be tracked through membership information.

3. Trader Joe’s

While returns at the local grocery store may occur less frequently when compared to retail department stores, Trader Joe’s return policy is one of the best. There is no hassle with returning this store’s products. Regardless of the reason for bringing the item back, Trader Joe’s will return the item for the full refund amount or store credit. What’s even better is that there is no time limit in which the item has to be returned.

4. JCPenney

JCPenney’s return policy is pretty straightforward. Items can be returned within 180 days for a refund in the method of the original payment as long as the consumer has a receipt. If the consumer doesn’t have a receipt, they have 45 days to return the merchandise for an exchange or store credit. However, the item will be valued at the lowest selling price. For furniture, the item can be returned within 30 days with a receipt. Electronics and fine jewelry have a cap of 60 days for returns.

5. Kohl’s

On top of their ongoing sales, Kohl’s allow their customers to return merchandise for a full cash refund within 1 year. The store will process the refund even if the return threshold has been exceeded. What’s also great about their policy is that there are multiple options if the consumer no longer possesses the sales receipt. Options include an even exchange, store credit valued at the lowest price within a 13-week period or a corporate-issued refund. Gift cards and electronics are exceptions to this policy.

6. Nordstrom

Until recently, Nordstrom customers were able to return any item for any reason. Even with the slight changes to their policy, Nordstrom return policy is still quite liberal. Nordstrom doesn’t have a time limit when it comes to both returns and exchanges on items. Returns without receipts are not an issue since they are able to access all purchases through their system. If the purchase isn’t recovered, the customer is given the current sale price in the form of a store gift card.

7. Amazon

What makes Amazon’s return policy favorable is that it is hassle-free, and the process doesn’t necessarily require contact with another human. Most items that are new and have not been opened can be returned to this online retailer. Keep in mind that this company offers merchandise that may not have been fulfilled by Amazon but by a third party instead. As long as the product is directly sold from Amazon, a full refund is granted within 30 days of the purchase.