You can’t have it both ways, says Yolanda Lobo.
The 31-year-old New York City resident recently bought an old-fashioned television set for her parents and decided to take it to a local electronics store.
But she didn’t get a single replacement.
“I went into the store and they said, ‘Oh, we don’t have that,’ and I was like, ‘No, I bought that.
It’s not on sale,'” Lobo told National Geographic.
She was shocked.
Lobo said the store had an array of new televisions that she could not buy.
“The store had a few that were new, like, five years old,” she said.
But she was not alone.
Yelp found her, and was able to offer a $15 discount.
After some back and forth, Lobo agreed to return her old TV for a refund, but her offer was rejected.
As a result, Lobos family decided to replace her old appliances, starting with her old projector, which she used to view movies and play video games.
“I just thought, ‘If I don’t like this TV, I’ll just go buy a new one,'” she said, laughing.
It was then that she decided to go online and buy an old TV again.
“It was a little awkward at first, but once I had it and saw the pictures, I was just like, I need to fix this thing, and it was worth it,” Lobo said.
Lobo bought the TV for $30.
She said the replacement costs were minimal, but she wasn’t thrilled with the results.
While the $15 price tag may seem steep, Lobos experience was similar to many of the thousands of people who have lost their televisions.
For example, when a homeowner’s warranty expires, the new TV can be subject to significant damage, including scratches and cracking, the damage that can cost hundreds of dollars to fix.
Many people also worry that replacing the TV can take months to complete, and many have resorted to spending hundreds of hours researching online TV repair options.
Lobos experience is not unique.
According to a 2016 survey by Consumer Reports, almost a quarter of Americans said they lost their TV in the last year.
A similar survey by Zillow found that more than 30 percent of respondents who lost their television in the past year did not have a solution to fix it.
And that’s not even counting the millions of Americans who have reported having problems with their old TVs and don’t know how to fix them.
“You just don’t want to make a decision that you’re going to take a risk on it,” says Lobo, who is now using a Roku 4, an Amazon Fire TV Stick and a Chromecast for streaming video.
“There are a lot of reasons why people might want to invest in a new TV.”