What’s the Wayfair Return Policy, and Is It Fair?

Wayfair has trendy and affordable furniture and home goods, but their return policy isn’t as fair as others.

Before jumping on their low prices, understand what it takes to do a return at Wayfair and how to tell if you’ll be eligible for a return.

There’s a Strict 30-Day Return Window

First, you should know that Wayfair only allows a 30-day window to return items. The countdown starts on the day of delivery or the day you receive the item. You must have the original packaging and follow Wayfair’s return policy.

Holiday Purchases are the Exception to the Rule

Like most stores, Wayfair allows more time during the holidays. Any items purchased between November 1 and December 31 have until January 31 to be returned. This gives you more time should you buy something from Wayfair as a gift or even for yourself but change your mind during this busy time of year.

All Returns Must Meet these Requirements

Besides the 30-day window, all Wayfair returns must meet these requirements.

Most obviously, the items shouldn’t be damaged, and as we said, they must be in the original packaging. If you received the items disassembled and you assembled them, you must disassemble them for the return.

If the item arrives damaged, of course, you have options. But if you can’t prove it arrived damaged, you won’t be able to return the product.

Wayfair also prefers all items shipped back in their original packaging. If the original packaging isn’t reusable, you can use a different box, but it should be similar in size and no larger than 108 inches long.

Damaged Items Require Proof for Returns

If you receive damaged or defective items, your return window is still 30 days. Contact Wayfair as soon as you realize the item has damage. They may require pictures of the damage, and usually require you to ship the damaged item back.

I suggest taking pictures immediately of the damage and having a timestamp on the picture to prove it arrived damaged and that you didn’t do it.

If you don’t return the original product (if they ask for it), they’ll reverse the refund or charge you for the replacement if they sent one.

However, Wayfair doesn’t always require you to return the defective item. For example, if you bought a dresser and one drawer is defective, they’ll typically send a new drawer without charging you.

Wayfair’s return policy makes them sound strict, but I personally have had a defective product from them after a few months of owning the product, and they stood behind their products, making the situation right from the start.

You Can’t Return these Items

Like most store return policies, Wayfair lists items you cannot return. Personalized items and gift cards are the most common items on the list, but a few others might take you by surprise.

For example, you cannot return clearance or open box items. If you buy either, make sure you’re 100% certain about your purchase. You also cannot return live plants, swatches, or items marked ‘not returnable’ on the website.

Clearance and open box items concern me the most. If you make an impulse purchase because of the lower prices, you might regret it. Make sure to read the fine print and know the product’s condition before buying it to ensure you don’t lose money.

Lastly, you can’t return bundled items UNLESS you return the entire bundle. For example, if you bought items as part of a 10 for $50 sale, you can’t return one item. Instead, you must return all ten items or none.

Return Shipping Isn’t Free

In most cases, return shipping isn’t free. Instead, Wayfair charges a fee based on the package size and the location it’s sent to. 

In addition, Wayfair won’t refund the shipping charges you paid to have the item shipped to you. Typically they charge $4.99 for products up to $35 and higher shipping prices for more expensive items.

In addition, if a delivery person delivered the item and they assembled the product for you, Wayfair won’t refund the assembly costs.

Mattresses Have a Longer Return Policy (With Exceptions)

Fortunately, Wayfair has a more liberal return policy on mattresses. You get 100 days to try a mattress to decide if you like it. Then, if you aren’t satisfied within that time frame, you can return it (for free) or do a free exchange.

Like most policies, though, there are exceptions. You cannot return any of the following:

  • Crib mattresses
  • Mattress toppers 
  • Open box mattresses
  • Air mattresses

Appliances can be Returned, but There are Rules

If you have large appliances delivered by Wayfair, you can return them as long as you don’t have them installed. I suggest refusing delivery before the delivery people leave, but if you accept it, you still have options.

Like all other returns, the appliances must be in their original packaging. Before installing an item, check for damage, make sure it’s the right appliance, and that you’re 100% satisfied before installing it.

Wedding Registry Gifts Have a Longer Return Period

If you have a Wayfair wedding registry, you get up to 90 days after your wedding to return items. There’s no fee, but you’ll receive the refund as a Wayfair store credit that never expires. While it’s frustrating to get a store credit, since it never expires, you can keep it for future purchases for your home. 

Please note that Wayfair’s wedding registry ended on December 31, 2022, but existing registries are still in effect beyond that date, and the return window still applies.

You Choose How to Receive your Refund

When you return items at Wayfair, you choose how to receive your refund. If you choose a Wayfair credit, it never expires, so you don’t have to rush into a decision.

If you prefer to receive your money back, you will receive it via the method used to pay for the purchase.

For example, if you paid with a debit or credit card, you’ll receive your payment back once Wayfair gets the return in its warehouse. However, it takes 5 – 7 days to receive the funds back on your card.

If you paid using any other method, such as a money order, wire transfer, or personal check, it could take up to two weeks to receive your refund.

However, if you request a Wayfair gift card or store credit, you’ll receive your funds within one business day.

How to Process a Wayfair Return

Wayfair makes it easy to return items. 

Start by logging into your account and clicking ‘My Orders.’ Then, select the item you want to return and the reason for returning it. 

Complete all sections, including how you want to receive your refund. Wayfair will send a confirmation and shipping label to your email address on file.

Bring the item with the label to your local carrier and drop it off for shipping. Wayfair will process your refund when they receive the return.

You can Cancel Order before They Ship

If you change your mind before your order ships, you can cancel it, so you don’t have to deal with the hassle of returns. However, be quick if you want to cancel your item because as soon as it’s in ‘preparing for shipping’ mode, the system cannot cancel it.

If you cannot cancel your order, you should wait for it to arrive and then process a return. However, you will be responsible for the return shipping charges.

FAQs – More Questions about Wayfair Returns

Does Wayfair pay for return shipping?

Wayfair doesn’t pay for shipping. They’ll provide you with a return shipping label, but they’ll deduct the return shipping charges, plus any shipping charges paid to receive the item initially from your refund.

Does Wayfair price match?

Wayfair is one of the few stores that doesn’t price match. So, if you find a better price elsewhere, you must return the original items bought from Wayfair and buy them for a lower price from the other store.

Can you return appliances to Wayfair?

The easiest way to return appliances to Wayfair is to refuse delivery before the delivery crew leaves. This way, you don’t have anything to return and can work out a resolution with Wayfair to get a new item or cancel the order. 

If you accept delivery, you can still return the items, but you may have to jump through a few more hoops.

Do you have to pay for return shipping if your item is damaged?

Fortunately, Wayfair doesn’t require you to pay for shipping if your item arrives damaged. This is why I suggest taking pictures immediately of any damaged products. When you return it, you don’t want to be stuck with the shipping charges for something you didn’t cause.

Final Thoughts – Wayfair’s Return Policy Is Quite Strict

If I’m being honest, Wayfair’s return policy is one of the stricter policies out there. Yes, you can return items, but it will cost you and if you don’t meet all their requirements, you might not be able to return the item.

My best advice is to open the items immediately, take pictures if they don’t look how you expected, and refuse delivery of any items delivered by Wayfair themselves that don’t seem like they are in perfect condition.

You’ll jump through a few hoops to get the return processed, but eventually, you’ll get your money back, or in the worst case, receive a store credit.

Kim Pinnelli is a personal finance freelance writer and koopy.com contributor. She lives in the Chicago suburbs, writing from home for the last 13 years. Kim enjoys helping people understand personal finances and writes on topics about saving money, investing, planning for retirement, and ways to increase income. In her free time, Kim enjoys hanging out with her 3 children, reading, crocheting, and spending time outdoors.

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