Consign-It! Home Interiors is quietly changing the way people shop for their home. Between converting the apparel and clothing section into a "Mall for the Home"—an extension of the store where people can rent booth space to sell their own furniture and accessories—and beginning to advertise goods on Craigslist, store operators have seen a substantial business boom.
"Since we started listing [items] on Craigslist in January, we've had people drive here from up to 100 miles away to purchase merchandise,” says Sally Hock, who works at the Central Avenue business. "The difference is pretty amazing."
The store has three sections, featuring new, consigned and used home furnishings on the main floor, often sold at a large discount compared to typical retail stores. When people list items for consignment on the main floor, they get 40 percent of the sale after the item is sold—a typical rate for a consignment shop. However, customers get more value by showing
in the store's two wings or the "Mall for the Home."
"We have about 45 different vendors that rent out spaces. In the Mall for the Home, sellers can decide both how to arrange the merchandise and how to price it," says Hock. "It only costs $1.95 per square foot per month plus 10 percent of all sales, which is a great deal."
The store is at maximum capacity, and moving off the vendor waiting list can take months. Store operators believe the success is due largely to a broad customer base.
"We have everyone from designers looking for clients to parents helping to furnish a college dorm to people shopping for their own home," says Hock. "A good amount of our customers are regulars that we are on a first-name basis with. They know that since we have such a high-turnover on our merchandise, that they need to come in often."
Many booth renters also are customers, and help to bring in new customers via word of mouth. According to Hock, it is hard for the regulars to return to traditional retail stores once they “get it."
"Re-sale stores have taken over in a whole new way," says Hock. "They have almost become the preferred type of store in the area. The growing popularity of repurposed goods is really undeniable."
Consign-It! Home Interiors is open daily from
10am-6pm except Thursdays (10am-8pm),
Fridays (10am-5pm) and Sundays (noon-5pm). 6925 W. Central Ave. 419-841-4663.