Furniture delays force customers to alternative options
Many industries are still suffering in major ways from the COVID-19 pandemic with no clear end in sight. Furniture Delays are happening across the world. However they are creating opportunity for another industry.
In the past year, we have seen an influx of Americans on the move. According to this year’s Neighbor American migration report, 21% more people plan to move in 2021. With so many people relocating for various reasons, furniture is a hot item. However, a customer ordering a bed in August may not see it come in for a year.
“Its been absolutely every aspect of the furniture industry that was completely.. I mean its catastrophic and its affecting me, its affecting my ability to complete work, its affecting me from being able to bill jobs.. I started jobs in January and I am still waiting for furniture to deliver,” says interior designer Holly Dennis.
The furniture industry is dealing with major delays for a plethora of reasons. She says the problem began with a pause in business during the pandemic lock down in the US.
“Factories are closed. And you can’t keep sending factories orders and nobody is there to make the stuff,” says Dennis.
Holly says the landscape for furniture manufacturing lies in Asia where factories were closed even longer than those in the US. Meanwhile factories manufacturing materials necessary for furniture such as foam, fabrics, and upholstery faced their own contributing issues.
“That deep freeze that went through Texas in February knocked it offline again for another two weeks.”
She says shipping times and costs also became an issue due to the lack of workers at transportation hubs
“All these starts and stops, people not being able to go to work because of COVID-19 restrictions has created like the perfect storm of supply chain just being completely devastated.”
While designers and furniture stores struggle with delayed deliveries and spikes in prices, consignment store other hand are booming with business.
“The resale community is doing better than it ever has. And its because of the delays in the furniture being in China, whether there’s fabric In Egypt or dyes in India, there's just long delays,” says Patti Clark, a worker within the re-sale community.
She says there's an appealing resale community in Florida due to it being a state of transit.
“Somebody introduces them to a shop and takes them in, they’re just like wow because a lot of them look like outlets for Macy’s.”
She also says many consumers are turning to resale shops while experiencing furniture delays because it is cash and carry.
“They can find a couch, they can find a table, they can take it home. Maybe they’ve already ordered something and they have to wait. At least they can eat dinner, they can sit and watch TV, and then when that furniture comes that they’ve been really wanting, they can just donate it again, so it’s just a re purposed cycle.”
Meanwhile, with the spike in COVID cases, the furniture delays aren’t looking up.
“They were saying previously that we were going to start seeing some stuff stabilize by the first quarter of 2022, but now I think we are going to miss that stabilization and it’s going to be prolonged,” says Dennis.
With all this being said, furniture sales have gone up 38% in the past year according to Furniture Today.