3OYS: Looking for love turns into costly mistake

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Linda Owens loves the outdoors, which explains why she likes to hike. And Linda says it would be nice to find someone who shares her passion for nature.

“I'm independent and I can take care of myself. But like everybody, I think I'm looking for that life mate," she says.

So when Linda received an advertisement in the mail from Scottsdale-Matchmakers.com last year, she decided to give it a try.

But, Scottsdale Matchmakers charged a $2,500 fee to join.

Linda thought it was pricey but was hopeful that it just might help her find that life mate she's looking for.

“I figure that if someone is willing to invest in a matchmaker, the amount of money that you spend, they're more serious about looking for a relationship," she says.

For $2,500, Linda says she was promised at least seven matches that would fit the criteria she was looking for.

However, seven months later, Linda is still hiking solo, because Scottsdale Matchmakers only sent her one possible match, and that so-called match, she says, didn't even fit her written criteria.

“I let them know that I wanted another match, which is how the process works," she says.

But more months went by and Linda says no more matches ever came her way.

So, she contacted Scottsdale Matchmakers once again. After all, she had paid them $2,500.

“I wrote them an email, saying that I didn't hear from them with another match and that I was thinking they didn't have the database that they claimed, and that I wanted my money back," she says.

Scottsdale Matchmakers told Linda that she had signed a contract, and since they sent her least one referral, she was locked in and would receive no money.

She apparently wouldn't get anymore matches either.

“I think they're just selling memberships. But I don't think that they're selling them honestly, knowing that they have people that they can match you with.”

3 On Your Side got involved and discovered Scottsdale Matchmakers has a little office just off of Via de Ventura and Pima, but the office always seemed closed.

So, we started emailing the company. Two women with a company called QualitySingles.com replied back, saying they would look into Linda’s situation.

However, their communication with 3 On Your Side stopped abruptly.

According to Linda, Scottsdale Matchmakers told her they would consider a refund but only if 3 On Your Side would not air a news report about them.

Then, Linda says they stopped communicating with her as well, even though they kept her $2,500.

“I paid for a service for them to call me with matches, so calling them and asking if they have one would be a waste of my time. I think they need to provide me with the matches or return my money," she says.

Linda says she's learned a valuable lesson, and she wishes she would have done some more research.  She plans to file a complaint with the Attorney General's office.