Home Depot Credit Card

Why I’m Canceling my Home Depot Credit Card 14

Home Depot Credit Card

Goodbye, good buy.

I shop at the Home Depot. A lot. And, as I do with absolutely every purchase possible, I used to always pay with my American Express Centurion Card (Membership Rewards points + hassle-free purchase protection). And, every time, as I’m sure Home Depot’s company policies dictate, the cashier would ask “Would you like to save 10% by applying for a Home Depot Credit Card?” I said “no” every time, until the day that the cashier added “plus you can save 10% on trash bags, light bulbs, batteries, air filters…” Whoa, whoa, whoa. She just said “light bulbs.” Let me explain why that got me excited.

My house is… larger than average. It would be rude for me to say exactly how much larger, but let’s just say it consumes a lot of light bulbs. In fact, the primary reason I go to Home Depot is to buy light bulbs. And on this particular visit, I was buying a few thousand dollars of light bulbs, because I was going eco-friendly (LED and Compact Flourescent) for the master bath and many of my exterior lights. So you can see why I got a little excited at the thought of getting a 10% for light bulb purchases now and in the future. So I got the card, and the discount.

For months, every time I needed bulbs (when an interior Halogen bulb burned out, I would replace it with an LED one), I would buy them at the Home Depot with my Home Depot Credit Card and enjoy the discount. And so today, when I went to the Home Depot in Covington to pick up half-a-dozen-or-so new EcoSmart LED bulbs for my front porch, I was surprised when my receipt spat out and displayed no discount. I mentioned it to the JJ (who coincidentally is the same JJ who helped me pick out a new washer and dryer combo back in 2009), who politely apologized and got someone from Customer Service to come over and sort it out. After three separate Customer Service people came over and tried to figure it out, one of them called somewhere, who told them to tell me that they “don’t do that discount any more.” To say I was angry would be going too far, but I admit I was disappointed. They hadn’t informed me when I got the card that the discount was temporary, they hadn’t sent me an email or notified me in my credit card statement that the discount would be ending, and the discount was the only reason I owned the card. I actually considered asking JJ to cancel the purchase so that I could re-purchase everything on my Amex, but he’d been so polite and apologetic that I decided not to… which turned out to be a mistake, because when I installed one of the $30 EcoSmart 14W LED BR30 bulbs on my porch today using a 20 foot extension pole, the plastic lens on the bulb popped off – so now I have one of the bulbs showing a grid of individual LEDs, and I’m going to have to rent a scissor lift (there’s no way I’m going up that high on a ladder!) to remove the bulb and replace it. Had I paid with my Amex, a 30 second phone call would have had the money refunded to my account and they’d have told me to toss the bulb in the trash. The hassle of having to stuff the bulb back in the box, find the receipt, and hope I get time to drive back to Home Depot before the return period is over (which I always seem to miss) is exactly why I always say “no” whenever a store offers me their credit card. I should have known better than to stray from my Amex.

Google located this page for me, which does clearly state “through May 25, 2011” (although I swear I’ve received the discount since then). So it’s not exactly like I can demand that Home Depot honor the discount. Although, they probably should remove the video from their website of the dude walking around Home Depot, unbelievably happy that he’s “buying the things [he] uses every single day, and saving and seeing the discounts right on [his] sales receipt!” Yeah, buddy. I used to walk around Home Depot that happy, too. But not today. And not any more. Sniff…

So while I can’t demand that they honor the discount, they can’t demand that I use their credit card, either. That’s something I did only because it was mutually beneficial. And with that benefit gone, there’s simply no need for me to keep the card. That’s why I’m cancelling my Home Depot Credit Card today.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go see a man about a scissor lift.

  • pj

    Great article. What steps did you have to take to cancel it? Have they given you any trouble since? It’s Citi, right?

    • Hi, PJ. I called the number on the back of my card, pressed 1 to continue in English, and then had to type in the 16 digits on the card and the last 4 of my SSN. I had to press numbers 4 more times through a phone tree until a human answered, who told me that my card number and SSN didn’t come through, so I had to read them again. 🙂 He didn’t put up any fight in cancelling the card, and he said they’d send me a letter within 7-10 business days confirming it was closed. I imagine it would have been a bit more difficult if I’d had an open balance, but my balance was zero so it went very smoothly. And yes, the back of the card says it’s issued by “Citibank (South Dakota), N.A.”

      • pj

        Steve, thank you for the info. I was making regular payments, assuming they were going toward my promotional balance. They charged me almost $400 in interest. And you’re right. I paid off my balance first, then called and threatened to cancel. I’m supposed to be issued a credit by the end of this week. Thanks again.

  • CS

    OMG! This was exactly my experience today. Went in to get the very same LED bulbs on sale. Normally $50, but were reduced to $25 with subsidies from the manufacturer, LIPA and HD. But when I went to pay for them up, the came up $39.99. Again, another nice Manager gave me the mark down, abut when I went to use my card… They all looked at me as though I was crazy: 10% off bulbs, we don’t do that.

    And so, I too, we cancel my HD card, and use Amex. Typically I use the Amex and redeem my rewards for HD. All I can say is that I’m happy Lowe’s is opening exactly across the street!

  • Pat Sumner

    I too have recently discovered their excessive ongoing interest on a purchase that was supposed to be paid off in six months. However it is impossible to avoid the interest unless you pay the total amount due. So I too am cancelling my no interest account. Home Depot is a rip off. I will be writing consumer affairs. Don’t know if it will help but I’m certain I’m not the only one to have made this discovery the hard way. I’m going to look into the Lowe’s policy.

    • Al

      I know for a fact that if you open a LOWE’S Consumer Credit Card, it gives you 5% off on everything, everyday! In addition, if you make a purchase during an interest free financing promo period, you can go to their web site, hover over ‘credit card services’ in the top right corner of the home page and slide down to (and click on) ‘manage your account’, sign in, hover over payments and slide down to (and click on) ‘manage how payments are applied’ then choose option 2, ‘allocate payment to deferred interest promotional balances first’. You’ve got total control. Now you must make sure that you actually pay it off in the time allotted, otherwise you will be back charged for the interest. Lowe’s is the way to go…

  • Dee

    My husband Is a general contractor and we spend $100,000 or more a yr at Home depot. As pro customers we don’t get any standard discount at all unless we purchase $1000 at a time where we are entered into the ” bid room” which typically gets us less than a 10% discount. I have now been bringing Lowes 10% coupons with me to Depot and Depot does not often offer their own 10% off coupons but will honor them from Lowes.. So if your like me and prefer Depot just go online and print yourself out some lowes coupons…

  • TJ

    I am paying off my balance of $22.00 today so I can cancel my card. I too am highly disappointed in Home Depot. We have used the Home Depot Card over the past 5 years without any incident. I make more than the minimum payment each month before the due date. Last month, I paid off the balance of the card on the due date. Since there were no more charges after paying off the balance, my card should have been paid off and there should be no balance…right? Wrong. It turns out that you will always carry a minimum $2.00 balance. Since I did not know this balance was on the card, there was no payment made this month. The Home Depot collection agency called me 2 days after the payment was due wanting to know if I would pay the $22.00 balance over the phone. The amount due included a $20.00 late fee–there is also a small amount of interest on top of the $20.00 late fee. I was told that the $2.00 minimum balance was a membership fee. Somehow, I missed that fine print. I am canceling my card today and paying off the $22.00 This simply is not how you treat a loyal customer that has spent over $75K over the past 5 years.

    • Geoff K. Williams

      It’s illegal for any credit issuing institution to hide charges. All charges MUST show up on your card including $2 unpaid. If you had paid off your card completely and it showed a zero balance, you need to print that out and keep it. Then you cancel. If they say ‘oh it turns out that you always have a $2 charge (membership or otherwise) and you still owe EVEN THOUGH YOUR STATEMENT SAYS OTHERWISE –that is fraud and a federal offence. You take that to a lawyer or to the consumer protection agency in your state. What might have happened is you still had a balance of $2 remaining and you didn’t check it properly. However if that is not the case –and its as you wrote it –a ‘hidden balance’ owing you should not pay them or the collection agency. You report it to the authorities.

  • Ahmad Ibrahim

    I was going to apply for one today, but no! I looked at their website and there is nothing like nothing to tell exactly what’s going on. You go to consumers credit account and that’s it Apply! Thanks for the article, it was really helpful. I still believe that two to three credit cards from a good financial institutions are more than enough. This way we can collect more points in shorter time instead of wasting it between multiple accounts. The advantages of some retailers’s cards can be offset by the points.

  • Brian

    Im sorry to say i myself do work at Home Depot. Not to far from covington….im not saying im very happy with my time spent there. But i had some issues that had me to fall back into retail…which ive now been apart of for about 16 yrs. Ive seen the times change so drastically. Their now never out to help the consumer. Back in 94′ it was so much different. I loved it….customers were always happy and me being a manager, if anything was to go wrong….i could help in anyway i could to keep that customer happy. I cant stand how they expect us managers to conduct ourselves when a customer has an issue to help them. I would help a customer in the way i saw fit….then i would get reprimanded for doing so. But i kept that customer coming back. I say HONOR THE CUSTOMER!!! THEY ARE THE ONLY REASON WHY WE ARE HERE. They are my paycheck. So if i save them a couple dollars and it makes them happy, im on it. I will still do it today!! I love to make a customer happy with their experience with me. I get great reports and make great friends and bring a great shopping environment for my customers.
    But i might be leaving soon….the upper management and I are not agreeing.

  • I’m not sure what Home Depots that you people are shopping at but I have never had a bad experience with my card. I am a Pro Member and by many of my supplies in bulk which at times have reached the level of $10,000.00. at this point I reach the Platinum level which gives me a 20% discount on that purchase and every purchase for the rest of that year. I pay off all of my plastic within 60 days at the most and would never except a card that charged me a fee. Whoever said that on here is a boldface liar. It sounds to me that most of the posts on here our from people that have had one bad experience. as far as returning items, you don’t need a receipt, just bring it back and you can get the refund put back on your card. I’ve returned items as far as 18 months. Special note. The person that posted about the lightbulbs. I work very hard and am not ashamed to tell anyone that I live in a nearly 7000 sq. foot home with my wife and 7 children. You should be more concerned that you seem to be spending so much time buying lightbulbs. You should spend more time reading the fine print on your credit cards. Also you seem to like throwing your money away, I do have several vehicles that can help you change your bulbs???

    • Dis

      I would say some policies have changed for the better, I too have had no issues with Home Depot…the fact someone can have up to 3 of them from same person is a little odd.

  • Amandine

    Thank you for these useful information. I will be more attentive when using my cards as from now.