Ill. - Sears is extending its layaway program to major appliances.
The company's extended-payment
plan was first re-introduced at sister chain Kmart during the 2008 holiday season
and later extended to most categories at Sears.
appeared during the Great Depression to help cash-strapped consumers pay for
goods interest-free over an extended period of time, but their popularity waned
in the 1980s with the increased availability of credit cards.
Sears said it
added majaps to the layaway list to help maintain sales momentum as the federally
funded "cash for appliances" rebate program concludes.
"For customers who
haven't taken advantage of the government rebate program, Sears' layaway
presents the opportunity to purchase more efficient appliances, while managing
their budget," said Susan Ehrlich, financial services president for Sears Holdings.
"Programs such as layaway offer a smart solution by making big-ticket items
Sears cited a
national survey it commissioned showing that more than 33 percent of consumers
would consider using layaway for home appliance purchases. "Our customer spoke,
so we listened," Ehrlich said.
available in stores or online at www.sears.com/layaway
requires a contract initiation fee of $5 and a down payment of $15 or 20
percent. Bi-weekly payments are then made for the length of the contract.
Sears also plans
to roll out an extended in-store layaway program this fall which will give customers
more time to complete their payments.
In addition to offering
majaps on layaway, Sears recently launched "The Big Switch," an initiative to encourage
families to remove and recycle millions of inefficient appliances, and upgrade
to new Energy Star-rated models that can help them save more than $2,500 on
their utility bills over the life of the product.
Hoffman Estates, Ill. - Sears is extending its layaway program to major appliances.