Layaway plans are back in fashion. With credit cards either maxed out, cancelled or simply tucked away, consumers are looking at layaway as a means to having at least a little something under the Christmas tree.
Out of the big stores only Kmart’s layaway service is there for consumers. Target and Wal-mart want consumers to use their store credit cards meaning a “ho-ho-ho” now will turn into the Grinch stealing 2009 trying to pay it off.
In fact, Kmart has even gone so far as to hire Kate from the TLC cable show Jon & Kate Plus Eight to be their spokesperson for the service.
How layaway service work?
It’s pretty easy actually. Since Kmart layaway is the topic today we’ll outline their program. Select your items as you normally would but instead of regular check-out, go to the layaway counter. You pay a $5 layaway fee and a deposit – normally 10% of the total and/or a $10 cancellation fee – and you must return every two weeks to pay on the balance. You have eight weeks to pay the balance in-full at which time you can take your items home. If you don’t make the payments every 2 weeks or miss paying the balance in-full by the end of 8 weeks, you will get a refund minus the $15 (layaway fee + cancellation fee).
To give a little encouragement, Kmart is offering a $5 coupon you can print here (requires Adobe reader to display and print the PDF) valid in-store October 24 – November 30, 2008.