A hugely popular home goods store and Five Below competitor fears shoppers could be tricked by online impersonators as it closes stores across the US.
Dodgy websites and Facebook pages pretend to be Christmas tree shops — but you risk being scammed if you click on them, the Middleboro-based company warns.
Discount home goods retailer CTS is going out of business after filing for bankruptcy in May.
The chain shocked shoppers when it announced it would close all 65 stores by the end of next month.
However, many stores in Massachusetts and New Hampshire will close early this weekend, according to the Christmas Tree Shops website.
Those closing Sunday, July 30 are in Natick, North Dartmouth, Orleans, Pembroke and West Dennis, and in Nashua and Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
The chain has announced a massive “sale out of business” in recent weeks.
CTS said that “everything needs to go,” including home decor, patio items, the kitchen and dining room, and pieces to upgrade bedrooms and bathrooms.
The site added that customers could make huge savings as prices would be reduced by 30 to 70 percent from the lowest ticket price.
But ahead of this weekend’s big sell-off, warnings have been raised that scammers are busy tricking shoppers into spending their money.
Fraudsters pretend to be Christmas tree dealers online.
The company said, “Christmas Tree Shops does not sell online.”
“There are several websites and Facebook pages that claim to be us. Please make sure you are on our official website and Facebook page before providing any personal information.”
Recently released data from the Federal Trade Commission shows that consumers said they lost nearly $8.8 billion to fraud in 2022, a more than 30 percent increase from the previous year.
Fraudulent scams were the most frequently reported to the FTC, followed by online shopping scams.
CTS is a 53 year old chain based in Cape Cod.
Though the company had hoped to stay open after some stores closed, its lawyers told the bankruptcy court two weeks ago that it could not buy inventory to replenish shelves.
This has led to lost sales and the current liquidation sale, Mass Live reported.
The liquidation will be administered by Hilco Merchant Resources.
It said: “End of store sales allow shoppers to take advantage of discounts of up to 50 percent off the lowest ticket prices across the store, with all Christmas and other holiday items available at 50 percent off the lowest ticket prices.”
After Christmas Tree Shops filed for bankruptcy on May 5 this year, it originally planned to close just 10 stores.
But when the Massachusetts-based retailer defaulted on its $45 million bankruptcy loan, the list of closures stretched to every single store.
If you’re planning on snagging a last-minute bargain, note that as of July 21st, CTS will no longer be accepting gift cards.