Customers wait for payment from Valley consignment shop


It might be the end for a Phoenix consignment store with a history of not paying on time, according to its customers.

Camelback Consign and Design's door are locked up tight, with a hand written note advising clients to call owner Mike Burns to pick up any items.

The company's website is still up and running, but a look into the windows show a much emptier showroom than the last time we were there in April.

At the time, we had a few angry customers with us, who say Burns owes them thousands dollars for furniture that he sold.

They accuse him of either not paying them or writing bad checks.

You can read about their experiences and his response, below.

Have you successfully gotten your furniture or been paid by Mike Burns? Let me know about it here .

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How many of you have taken your belongings to a consignment shop?

Any problems? In most cases, it's a lot less hassle than trying to sell items yourself.

That's how it's supposed to be.

But a number of Valley consignors say that's not the case when you take your belongings to Camelback Consign and Design in Phoenix.

Jessica Richards is one of them.

Her father built a lot of nice furniture pieces.

It was his hobby and when he died, Richards received some of the furniture.

One of the pieces was a Craftsman style Murphy bed.

Richards says she didn't want to get rid of it, but didn't have room for it.

So, she took it to Camelback Consign and Design where she says she had successfully sold other items before.

This time, it was a different story.

Richards took the bed in three years ago.

During that time, she says she questioned why she hadn't received payment for it.

And she says she couldn't even see her bed in the store.

Richards says owner Mike Burns told her his business had a water leak.

"He said I have some news for you. One of the pipes broke and the Murphy bed was sitting right next to the pipe that broke," Richards recalls.

So, she expected insurance would pay for it.

That didn't happen and she let me know what was going on.

I called Mike Burns at Camelback Consign and Design and later visited him in person.

He says his insurance company had still not paid for Richards' bed.

So, I checked with the his insurer.

They wrote me saying: "We have paid for those items documented as required by the insured's policy. The

Murphy bed was never documented appropriately, as requested several times."

Richards says the insurance isn't her issue anyway.

"Why don't you just pay us what you're claiming it for and then you wait for the insurance," she says.

By this time, other customers also told us they were owed money by Camelback Consign and Design.

Susan Frano is a Valley realtor who stages homes.

She says she was constantly buying and selling furniture at the store.

But, she says recently she stopped getting checks.

Although, she says she did get a bad check..

"I get a $100 check and the bank stamps it saying endorsement canceled," Frano said.

Frano says she's also missing items she took in, like an expensive hutch.

And I heard from Andrea Davis of Prescott.

She also got a bad check for a lot more money -- $2,030.

"I have been to the bank every week since then. One time since January he had enough funds to cover the check.

I just didn't get in at that time," Davis says.

She says Burns promised her he'd take care of it, but has not.

We took Davis with us when we visited Burns at Camelback Consign and Design.

He blamed financial concerns, but again told Davis she'd get her money that afternoon.

"I've heard it before. He's not going to have any money for me," Davis told me at the time.

We checked. She was right.

At the time I'm writing this story, Davis says she still doesn't have her money.

There are a few things to remember here.

Make sure to at least run an internet check for complaints before choosing any business. There are numerous complaints about Camelback Consign and Design online.

Also, demand a specific contract. Several customers tell me they didn't even have an official list of the belongings they dropped off at the shop.

And, issuing a bad check is a crime. The Maricopa County Attorney's office can help you get your money back.

Here's that bad check information .

Email with any consumer issue you have or "like" my Let Joe Know Facebook page and tell me about it there. You can also call the Let Joe Know helpline at 855-323-1515. Assistance League of Phoenix volunteers are there Wednesdays and Fridays from 11-1. You can leave a message any time.

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