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Music and movie retailer HMV is on the brink of collapse once more.

HMV is now in administration, meaning if it doesn’t find a buyer the retailer could disappear from the high street and online.

This isn’t the first tome either. The chain went under in 2013 and saw half of its stores close down before a takeover package eventually saw the shop survive. And with more and more of us streaming rather than buying CDs or DVDs HMV has once more found sales dive. Apparently, DVD purchases were down by 30% in December.

So apart from another potential empty store on your high street, what does it mean for you? Well, there are a couple of actions you need to take fast if you’ve received an HMV gift card for Christmas, or recently purchased something from the shop.

If you have an HMV gift card

Spend it today. DO NOT WAIT. Last time HMV went into administration gift cards were not accepted at first and there’s every chance the same will happen again. Of course, the shop might continue to take them as payment, or a new owner might come along, but it’s not worth the risk.

If you’ve bought anything at HMV

Anything you have purchased from the retailer recently that you don’t want then return it straight away to get your money back or exchange it for something you do want. The same goes for any gift you’ve been given for Christmas but don’t want or already have that has come with a gift receipt. I’m not sure exactly what the returns period is for HMV, so do check your receipt, but it could be as far back as mid-November if there was an extended returns period for Christmas.

If you buy anything new from HMV

Of course, the shop is still open, and any money spent there could help keep it going. At the time of writing, the HMV website doesn’t even mention the potential problems.

So if there anything you like the look of over the next few days, possibly in the sales, then make sure it’s the right one. If HMV does goes into administration and potentially then close for good, you won’t be able to return your purchases.

If it’s something expense, a games console or tech perhaps, then pay with a credit card as then the credit card provider is equally liable if there’s something wrong with your purchase. This only works for individual items costing more than £100, not the total spend.

Got another gift card this Christmas?

The same advice follows for any gift card you’ve got, especially if you’ve heard any news about the retailer struggling recently. That could be a series of store closures or big profit warnings. Even though these don’t mean a shop will go under, it’s a sign you should spend your gift card as soon as possible.

You can read more about how to ensure your gift cards aren’t wasted in my rules if you’ve got a gift card article.

My rules if you’ve been given a gift card

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