Are you thinking of ordering furniture or maybe you have furniture on order and you can not believe the wait time? We all know that nothing has been the same since the shutdowns begun. You may have not noticed it right away, but I am sure you have seen delays and shortages lately on the car lots, in the stores, and online. . I am also sad to say, that I am sure you have seen price increases as well. Learn more about the wait times, and all the other changes that are taking place in the furniture and flooring world. We will try to help you understand why and what has to change for things to get better. Tune into WNEM TV5 each Thursday morning at 9am to learn the latest news and times from Kathy.
After Covid-19 first struck, and the shut down begun, there was a perfect store of issues that took place that have continued to slow down production. From the work force not returning to work, to the foam plants being destroyed by the deep frost in the South, to supply shortage of wood, metal, and fabric across the United States- American production is not what it use to be.
Let me tell you though, they are trying with everything in them to get back to where they use to be and I believe they can!
The latest issue I am told is that many companies have offered a very nice signing bonus to obtain more workings in the craftsmen ship of building furniture. The bonus kicks in after 30 days. Training takes place and the line starts to move smoothly again and then there has been walk out 31 days into the process! The 500 new workers who were just hired and trained to produce 5,000 pieces of furniture that week walk out and move to a different company for a different signing bonus! Very frustrating and costly for the companies! No wonder your recliner may take a week more!
We are seeing improvements. There are companies, American companies who are moving much quicker and creating fine products. We have stock! If you need a lift chair, mattresses, a recliner, carpet, LVT or sofas, we have stock! If you want a 7 seat blue leather sectional in with nail heads going around the round arms and side panels and with firmer seat cushions, you may have to wait, because it is custom to you and your space. It is worth the wait too, because it is what you want and what your family needs!
I was talking to a friend the other day who has been trying to build a new home for the past 2 years. She said, "Everything is hurry up to wait! Nothing comes quick!" So much of this is life now and we hope that it gets better, but we are all so blessed to have these 1st World issues where others do not even have homes, loved ones, healthy food, or heat. When I think of the big picture my stress levels come down and my hope grows.
As for future production times and prices.....
Next week, the International Furniture Market takes place. Kathy is leaving today to drive there and it is nothing like you have seen. Most people think it would be fun for the first hour, but imagine 48 blocks of high rise buildings, 12-15 stories high and show room after show room of furniture to look at, judge and asses if this would be a good product for mid-Michigan. You start out at 5am because there are no hotels in town that are available. Drive an hour to park and then walk and walk and walk. You easily put in 15 miles a day!- 31,680 steps no problem and then do it again for the next 5days each night to 8pm!
International Furniture Market means the whole world comes together to place their orders! Therefore, most likely, production times will become longer again!
It is often fun to walk into the elevator and hear languages from around the world. Walk through the Turkey and Italian show rooms and see the designs that are popular there currently.
For many manufacturing companies Market is their first of the year! Prices often do go up after market. The manufactures see from orders placed what items and products where popular and what trends their clients want to establish. Going forward in producing these products normally brings new costs. Along with all the current price increases on wood, and raw materials we foresee products getting more expensive, become getting any lower in price.
American companies have not had to deal with all the freight/ port new fees and charges. There are so many waiting, pooling, unloading, loading on truck, release of truck and more new fees and surcharges on imported products that it changes daily. Gas prices do affect any item in travel of course, if it is traveling from California to Michigan or Indiana to Michigan- new higher gas prices will affect your item's cost. Freight companies will only give a 48 hour price quote these days, because how quickly things keep changing. We hope to see some of these charges go away, but until the world changes things will stay the same.
Our advice to you, if you are wanting new furniture. Order now! Come in, let's plan it and pick it out and let's get it ordered. Prices are lower now than they will be in 3 months! If the production line gets quicker, your item will come quicker as well. If you never order, what you want will never come in. Items move off the showroom floor very quickly these days, waiting to find exactly what you want in stock may never happen!