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Dutch_12078

MyDakotaAddress.com is shutting the doors

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I will reply to my reply.

Just hit the redial button on my phone and got thru to Terri (as mentioned, yesterday I got a msg that seemed to say the line was out) anyhow I spoke to her. Here are few updates.

She is the owner. The bank person was the previous owner , 4/5 yrs ago.

She did not say what the issue was, and I didn't pry, my impression is that it is typical business issues, not enough help, but mostly $$,  people she owes want there $, combined with people owing her $ (not sure if she meant customers of the MF) or other people.

She did say she was going to try and get to her email and reply etc.

I also mentioned reimbursement, and she said she was going work on that.

I also mentioned that she should try and keep everyone posted, she said she would.

 

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Cowboy, 

After reading you post I thought I would try calling again. I tried this morning a couple of time and got a message that the number was no longer in service. I just call and got right through to her. While I held she found the letter I was looking for and said she would send it to me. I really appreciate that as it was the title to a car that I had sent to her to register.

 

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1 hour ago, cowboy said:

She is the owner. The bank person was the previous owner , 4/5 yrs ago.

She did not say what the issue was, and I didn't pry, my impression is that it is typical business issues, not enough help, but mostly $$,  people she owes want there $, combined with people owing her $ (not sure if she meant customers of the MF) or other people.

 

Thanks for this update.  I know from personal experience that running a small business is a challenging effort.  Now that we know that at least some customers weren't receiving invoices one can speculate as to what other financial issues weren't handled properly.

The rumors that the tax authorities closed her down now seem more real.  As a small business owner, I always tried to delay my tax payments as long as possible.  If you're short of cash you might try to get away with not paying at all. That's when bad things happen.

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5 hours ago, docj said:

Thanks for this update. 

Are you going to retrack the nasty posting on Facebook about the bank president who is not the owner? :)

 

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15 minutes ago, 2gypsies said:

Are you going to retrack the nasty posting on Facebook about the bank president who is not the owner? :)

 

No need to ... apparently it flagged Facebook's algorithm so they censored it.

Edited by Lou Schneider

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On ‎7‎/‎27‎/‎2018 at 1:18 PM, Roobah said:

Doc,

Thanks for the info.  Here's my take about "timing" of this and lack of notification -- not to mention that because I'm on the road, I don't typically check my email every single day!

I got notice of some important mail on 23 of July.  Asked for it to be forwarded on 24th of July.  Received notice of Bill to renew my service for another 3 months (premium service) on 24th of July after I asked about whether it was due yet or not.  Paid that renewal bill on the 24th of July.  Got a receipt for 3-month renewal on the 24th of July.  Received a "regret to inform you we're closed for business" notice on the 26th of July and no mail received after the 25th will be forwarded and will be returned to sender.  I also requested a notice of balance for my mail deposits in my last email.

The problem is I usually get a confirmation that my mail is on its way when I ask to have it forwarded. I have not heard a thing.  Their phone answering service mailbox is full, so not way to leave a message. So I have no idea if the mail is on its way or not given the confusion of the past few days. (By the way, that very last mail includes my IRS tax refund I've been waiting for  -- due to my tax situation, I can only get paper checks in the mail from IRS that come MONTHS after I filed my taxes, so please don't suggest I file my taxes electronically that's not available to everyone in all situations and I happen to be one of those who cannot file electronically -- anyway). THAT check is not something that I am excited to have to go chase down if it got sent back to the IRS.)

I only found out about this 'closure of business' today because I wanted to get a new car I bought yesterday (the 26th) registered and logged in to begin that process.  So now I have to scramble to go find somewhere else to get my vehicle registered before I can drive it, and I'm extra annoyed that someone didn't give me a head's up about a possible business closing, especially when they asked me to send in a payment for another 3 months service 2 days before notice of business closure!  Does that mean they didn't know they were going out of business on the 24th of July, or that it was even a possibility?  I'm so annoyed at that,  I'm considering reversing the Visa payment for non-service if it can't be properly transferred to something else, not to mention a pretty good chunk of change sitting in my mail deposit account, what happens to that?

The fact that I didn't get acknowledgment that my mail was on its way and didn't get a response about my mail funds account balance leads me to believe this was an extremely sudden event.  But it sounds like some of you out there did get indicators that there was a looming business closure.  I got zero notice until after the fact.  Now I'm scrambling.

Dakota post: I called.  All I get there is a message stating they are WAY swamped due to this sudden closure of My Dakota Address and leave a message they will get back to me when they can.  (I guess no car registration for a while?)

Just annoyed.  But I understand life gets in the way.

Roobah

My Follow up --  (thought I posted this a few days ago found it in my drafts so trying again)

Since I'd called Terri (at MyDakotaAddress) and encountered a full message box, AND also made calls to Dakota Post (3 times between Thursday and Monday)to see about rolling over the suggested account) and just getting 5 days of 'leave us a message we'll get back to you if you are a MyDakotaAddress customer we don't want to talk to you message because you aren't nearly as important as our customers or the rest of the world' due to the volume of calls at both businesses they must have been getting innundated.  100% Dakota Post wasn't / still isn't meeting their promised call-back timeline.  As of Tuesday evening I still never got a call from them.  By mid-afternoon Tuesday, I decided this is NOT the kind of place I'd do business with when you can't even answer the phone or return a call after DAYS and DAYS.  There's enough other competition providing similar service.

But  on Saturday evening when I called what I thought was Dakota Post since it was well after their promised return call time period, turns out I called the wrong number on Saturday and  Terri answered the phone (must have REALLY been working some overtime and cleared out all those voice messages!!! -- in the conversation I think she said she'd been working 12-14 hour days since the notice).  Dakota Post who promised to be working around the clock throughout the weekend to return all calls hasn't called yet-- still waiting and it's late Tuesday evening now -- HEY DAKOTA POST, don't return my call, okay?   I both called (3X) and emailed them (1X).  I did get a return email to get the process started with some form filling-out from Dakota Post - but it appeared to be a standard agreement and did not even mention anything about a cross-agreement Terri mentioned.  I was also told MyDakotaAddress GOLD users (which I am) would be getting a matching price offer to continue mostly similiar service in a negotiated deal between the two companies.  (I don't even know what that really means, which is why I want to talk to someone, but haven't been able to, yet -- don't bother, I am shopping elsewhere for more reliable service.)

Anyway, Terri said MyDakotaAddress would be refunding my future service renewal in full (I just renewed a couple of days before the notice of going out of business) and they would be returning the balance of my available mailing funds to my account and Terri confirmed that she had just mailed all of the mail I requested to be sent on the 24th of July on Saturday the 28th of July (got it on Monday), noting they had gotten behind in sending out everyone's requested mailings and apologized for not mailing it earlier.  (I'm fine with that, I'm not in a hurry for the mail, I just wanted positive confirmation that it was on its way).  After that final mailing she was able to give me my final available mailing balance that will be returned.

It occurred to me that Terri will be without a job.  I expressed sympathy that she's losing her job and wished her luck in finding something new and let her get back to work.

Summary, while I haven't yet received any refunds, and I'm wondering if I should reverse charges (should I trust that they will actually honor promised refunds?)  I STILL have to say, I'm more impressed with the service I am getting NOW post-business-closing with MyDakotaAddress than I am with Dakota Post's performance.  I've set aside some time to work on this today (Tuesday) and expect 100% satisfaction, but I'm also weighing my options.  I'm still sitting on a vehicle I just bought last week that I can't register or drive because of all of this.  while not the fault of any of these businesses, they should just know that when I try to set up some kind of transaction I'm already annoyed from the get-go and looking for 100% satisfaction resolution.

Sorry so long :)  Not endorsing any particular business, just giving my experience so far.  NOT a happy camper!

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12 hours ago, Dutch_12078 said:

Since Terri has reportedly been the owner for 4/5 years, I'm surprised she's never updated her website to reflect that change. 

If this is the case, should she not then be responsible for and subject to the USPS regulations about mail forwarding services after the business closes?

6 hours ago, Roobah said:

I expressed sympathy that she's losing her job and wished her luck in finding something new and let her get back to work.

One thing which has impressed me through all of this as an outside observer is that Terri must do a remarkable job of presenting herself to those she came in contact with through the business since there seems to be a great loyalty to her even by those who were left "holding the bag," so to speak. I marvel that so few customers have even complained about her failure to keep customers informed or to warn them of the coming business closure. I also wonder if anyone will ever know for sure what happened to cause such a sudden business closure? I wonder if it will ever be revealed what the reason for the abrupt closing really is? The BBB still lists the business "Dakota International Services, LLC" doing business as "My Dakota Address" with Terri Lund, Vice President as the contact.

Edited by Kirk Wood

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37 minutes ago, Kirk Wood said:

If this is the case, should she not then be responsible for and subject to the USPS regulations about mail forwarding services after the business closes?

Of course she should be held responsible... Not being an MDA customer, I have no particular loyalty to Terri, but I do believe we shouldn't be too judgmental without knowing all the pertinent facts.

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9 hours ago, Roobah said:

I STILL have to say, I'm more impressed with the service I am getting NOW post-business-closing with MyDakotaAddress than I am with Dakota Post's performance. 

Admittedly, I switched instantly last week, before the crowd, but I've gotten great service from Your Best Address.  The price is a bit more per month than Terri was charging, but there's a much larger staff of people to do things.  For example, there's one person who just does motor vehicle stuff.  Also, the outsides of pieces of mail are actually scanned and are accessible online to you so you can see what a mail item actually looks like.-

As for Terri, she provided us excellent service over the past 8 years and I have no complaints.  Looking back, I think failure may well have been in trying to do everything herself and not charging customers for special services.  For example, I've asked that a fair number of mail items be opened, scanned and emailed to me.  That takes time but she didn't charge extra for that.  Similarly, she personally would go over to motor vehicles to process registrations, etc.  The only other staff in the office always seemed to be part-time and, relatively, temporary. 

One of the common points at which businesses fail is when they grow to where the "key person" can no longer manage all aspects of the business and is unwilling to delegate authority to others.  As much as I liked Terri, she mail well have succumbed to that problem.  For example, it's been reported here or in threads on other forums that she had failed to invoice some customers for extended periods of time which definitely would have messed up her cash flow.  The invoices I received from Terri were always manually prepared, presumably by her.  IMHO, that's time consuming and a potential source of errors.  A commercial billing service would have ensured that no invoices were overlooked and would have substantially reduced her workload in return for a modest per customer monthly fee.

From personal experience I can say that small businesses also fail because business owners don't fully analyze their overall cashflow. It's all too easy to feel giddy because monthly cash inflow is going well but you have to look at things from an annualized basis before you declare yourself a success.  Owners working for businesses may take salary or "draws" but in either case, it's easy for an owner to take out more money than the business can withstand.  If that happens the resulting cash shortfall may be deadly!

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11 hours ago, 2gypsies said:

Are you going to retrack the nasty posting on Facebook about the bank president who is not the owner? :)

 

I can't find it online, so I assume it's been removed.

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On 7/31/2018 at 9:27 AM, Chalkie said:

I would say that people ARE their customers as the mail send to a post office box or mail forwarding service is no different than the mail sent to a physical home address. I agree that it is nice to see the USPS being proactive.

I meant that mail forwarding service customers are no different from any other post office customer, and the post office owes them no special duty.  The post office is obligated to deliver mail to addresses--in this case the mail forwarding service's address.  It's not the post office's responsibility to figure out a way to help a mail forwarding service's customers when the mail forwarding service doesn't follow the post office's regulations.  But they're apparently giving it a shot this time, and good for them. 

 

17 hours ago, 2gypsies said:
On 7/28/2018 at 8:27 PM, docj said:

I've just posted a nasty review on his bank's Facebook page.  I encourage others to do the same.  At least we can get some revenge. 

Are you going to retrack the nasty posting on Facebook about the bank president who is not the owner? :)

Can I suggest that we use this as a teaching moment about rushing to social media to impugn people? 

 

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53 minutes ago, Blues said:

Can I suggest that we use this as a teaching moment about rushing to social media to impugn people? 

So can you now tell us exactly what happened and the reasons why? Clearly, nobody at the business in question has been at all forthcoming about this. If I had been one of the customers who got notice so very late, I'd be pretty unhappy about the complete lack of any answers. 

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56 minutes ago, Blues said:

It's not the post office's responsibility to figure out a way to help a mail forwarding service's customers when the mail forwarding service doesn't follow the post office's regulations.  But they're apparently giving it a shot this time, and good for them. 

I'll be that this isn't an "official USPS" action, but the work of a local postmaster who is trying to reduce the embarrassment resulting from a business associated with one of the town's leading citizens being unable to fulfill its responsibility to forward mail for another 6 months.  

56 minutes ago, Blues said:

Can I suggest that we use this as a teaching moment about rushing to social media to impugn people?

If my post did anything to cause the postmaster to agree to forward the mail even though it contradicts USPS policy then IMHO the post was worthwhile.  In small towns, pressure on prominent people can often achieve results.

Edited by docj

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3 hours ago, Kirk Wood said:

So can you now tell us exactly what happened and the reasons why? Clearly, nobody at the business in question has been at all forthcoming about this. If I had been one of the customers who got notice so very late, I'd be pretty unhappy about the complete lack of any answers. 

This surely would be maddening with the lack of information.  There may be information or answers later.   IE:  Some years ago I openned my seasonal mail box  and inside was check for a significant amount that was my money being refunded due to a saving bank being closed that I was totally unaware of.  It was insured under FDIC.  But I recieved no notice until I recieved the check and it was included in the envelope with the check. It was a little un-nerving.

Edited by bigjim

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17 hours ago, Kirk Wood said:

So can you now tell us exactly what happened and the reasons why? Clearly, nobody at the business in question has been at all forthcoming about this. If I had been one of the customers who got notice so very late, I'd be pretty unhappy about the complete lack of any answers. 

I can't and I am (no longer) a "My Dakota Address" customer.  I'm not "unhappy about the complete lack of answers".  It is what it is. Terry and her company is out of business.  Digging for tawdry details isn't likely to do me, or anyone else any tangible good.  I have not seen any indication of intent to rip-off customers.

I spoke with Terry yesterday and my only regret is that I did not convey my sympathy, for what is probably a VERY difficult challenge for her.  I honestly do not care about the details - it's over.

I, like everyone else, that was one of Terry's customers,  will have to find a way to move forward.  It's an unfortunate speed-bump for all, but not cataclysmic for me, and I suspect most others.

I'm disappointed the business failed, but sincerely wish Terry well.

Dan

Edited by DanZemke
clarification

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19 hours ago, Kirk Wood said:
Quote

Can I suggest that we use this as a teaching moment about rushing to social media to impugn people? 

So can you now tell us exactly what happened and the reasons why? Clearly, nobody at the business in question has been at all forthcoming about this. If I had been one of the customers who got notice so very late, I'd be pretty unhappy about the complete lack of any answers. 

I'm not sure why you quoted me when you asked your question.  I wasn't a customer and don't know anything about the situation.

 

19 hours ago, docj said:

I'll be that this isn't an "official USPS" action, but the work of a local postmaster who is trying to reduce the embarrassment resulting from a business associated with one of the town's leading citizens being unable to fulfill its responsibility to forward mail for another 6 months.  

If my post did anything to cause the postmaster to agree to forward the mail even though it contradicts USPS policy then IMHO the post was worthwhile.  In small towns, pressure on prominent people can often achieve results.

Well, I can see that my suggestion of a teaching moment isn't going to fly.

According to posts here, the "leading citizen" you trashed on social media hasn't been involved in the business for several years.  I just don't see how he's an acceptable target for revenge.

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4 hours ago, Blues said:

I just don't see how he's an acceptable target for revenge.

Revenge isn't usually a very satisfying motive for most actions. I really don't see where wanting the people to be open and above board is seeking revenge. Perhaps there was some event that caused the company to fail in only a few days? Even so, it would have been better received if they had chosen to be more open with the facts. I wonder if Teri knew much in advance. I doubt that it was anything criminal or illegal in nature or something would have leaked out via the media. Since I have never used them, it really doesn't matter to me, but I do have some curiosity when what seems to have been a healthy business suddenly fails. I hope that everyone affected by this finds a good solution and resolves any related problems. 

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16 hours ago, Kirk Wood said:

Revenge isn't usually a very satisfying motive for most actions. I really don't see where wanting the people to be open and above board is seeking revenge.

I wasn't addressing your desire to know what happened.  I was responding to (and quoted) a comment docj made where he was defending posting comments on Facebook trashing a guy who it turned out wasn't involved in the business after all.  Previously, he'd said, "I've just posted a nasty review on his bank's Facebook page.  I encourage others to do the same.  At least we can get some revenge."

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FWIW the guy had been the owner of the business and we have no way of knowing if he still was a part owner. Everything we have been discussing is speculation and hearsay. There's no way of knowing what the truth is

IMO the derogatory post I made may have gotten this guy off his butt to arrange the mail forwarding by usps. I'm sure he didn't want his bank customers to think he had stiffed his mail forwarding ones. I'm pretty sure that the mail forwarding isn't something Terri could have done on her own since it's a direct violation of usps policy. 

Quite honestly, all of us who were MDA customers were treated badly with respect to how this business closure was handled. I don't feel as if I owe MDA's management any more respect than they gave me!

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IMO, Everyone is entitled to react they way they want, as long as laws arent broken.  Of course everyone else is also entitled to judge whatever actions others do (as we all do to some degree on a daily if not minute basis).  If you believe you are right, dont worry about what other people have to say.  

I am personally miffed at how sudden and ill planned the closure was, so I totally understand the "burn the house down" approach.  If we had confirmed that he was the source of the closure (ie greed or gross mismanagement), I would have definitely grabbed my pitchfork!

Edited by dartmouth01

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11 hours ago, docj said:

FWIW the guy had been the owner of the business and we have no way of knowing if he still was a part owner. Everything we have been discussing is speculation and hearsay. There's no way of knowing what the truth is

And so far this continues to be the case. Teri may be nice to do business with, but not so nice as to share any explanation with those who relied on her. Don't you wonder why? Don't you think that loyal customers deserve to know some answers?  To me and the general public, the whole thing is just interesting news but I have always believed that loyalty between a business and the customer base should be a 2-way street. Some of her customers must be amazingly kind, forgiving people! 

10 hours ago, dartmouth01 said:

I am personally miffed at how sudden and ill planned the closure was, so I totally understand the "burn the house down" approach. 

 

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According to a previous post, Terri has said the closure is for "financial reasons". If another post was correct, the state tax folks shut them down, which would certainly be a "financial reason". How much information are the customers entitled to for other than curiosity? Knowing the gory details won't change anything...

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I exchanged emails with Terri yesterday as she is sending a couple pieces of mail that have been sitting in SD while I was gone for a month.  She's trying.  No need to growl and spit - as Dutch mentioned, it won't change anything. 

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