5 On Your Side

Raleigh gym closure has some customers seeking refunds

Posted August 7, 2014 5:41 p.m. EDT
Updated August 7, 2014 5:54 p.m. EDT

Some of the top considerations when looking for a gym to join are the equipment, the amenities and a convenient location.

That’s why many members of Rapid Fitness, on Falls of Neuse Road in Raleigh, are so upset that it closed. They told 5 On Your Side that they showed up to find a note on the door of the business or received an email that the closing was “effective immediately.”

The company blames the shutdown on a "multitude of issues," including plumbing, roof leaks and HVAC problems with their building.

The email “announces a name change to Retro Fitness” and directs members to its two other locations.

Under the law, when a gym closes, it can transfer customer memberships to another club – provided that club is within 8 miles of the old one.

In this case, the Falls of Neuse Road location is less than 7 miles from the Rapid Fitness gyms on Glenwood Avenue and Person Street.

The other transfer requirement involves amenities. By law, alternate locations have to offer the same services. The Falls of Neuse location had a pool; the others do not.

But several members say they were still denied refunds.

Mike Chase says he was told, "It didn't matter. Management had made its decision, and the contract was valid." He was told to dissolve the contract, he would have to pay 25 percent of the remainder.

5 On Your Side spoke Thursday with regional manager Mike Greenberg. He says there was confusion with the company’s customer service representatives. He says anyone who wants a refund can get it, and he says he's given more than 600 already.

Greenberg asked for patience, saying it could take about a month to contact everyone. If you're told otherwise, let us know and file a complaint with the Attorney General's office.