4 Surprising Things to Expect When Ordering New Furniture
What does the world of furniture look like in 2023? For many of us, this is an unanswered (and potentially unanswerable) question. From obscenely long shipping times to significant delays, ordering new furniture is more than stressful…it feels impossible! But, as we all navigate business, consumer, and frankly life changes—it’s to be expected. That doesn’t mean we have to go in clueless, though. To get the inside scoop, we’ve asked a few experts to weigh in on what they’ve noticed, what buyers can prepare for, and how we can all make the process—from order to delivery—as seamless as possible.
EXPECT DELAYS—REMEMBER THAT PRODUCTION IS GLOBAL
Gone are the days of artisan furniture makers who craft everything in-house. Most furniture, including custom furniture, relies on many parts and materials that are produced across the globe.
What does this mean for the everyday consumer? Some suppliers may be the sole supplier for many brands. So when one product is delayed, let's say, on a specialized attachment piece, delays can occur because there is no substitute.
In a time where production is challenged just as much as labor, having patience around both the creation and the ordering process is a must. Understand that just because you see something online doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily readily available or that it can be shipped within a reasonable time.
Patience is a virtue, yes, and it’s especially key right now.
KNOW THAT THERE IS HUGE DEMAND AT THE MOMENT
You want to order furniture… well, so does everyone else! As a result, the office is where employees are spending a significant amount of their time.
Their homes have become true extensions of every part of their lives. This shift in the way they live has inspired consumers to invest in all things home-related.
From furnishings to decor, the demand for products for the home spiked while the supply chain, labor, and the end products themselves have faced the largest challenge in decades.
KEEP LABOR SHORTAGES IN MIND
One of the biggest changes in the world of furniture is that there are labor shortages—everywhere.
And this isn’t just in the manufacturing stage; it’s also in the production and transport, too. Because of social distancing, quarantine, and shifts with work in general, all stages of the creation and shipping process have been impacted.
Warehouses and regional trucking companies alike are having trouble hiring and retaining employees. This applies not only to the end product but also to all of the components that go into manufacturing the end product.
For example, the hardware used to assemble the furniture, or the fabric used to make the cushions may be unavailable or delayed, which in turn causes a delay in the final finished product.
So, for furniture that’s ordered—it may actually be in pieces ready to be assembled, or even ready to go! But instead of being sent to you, it’s sitting in a truck or warehouse somewhere, just waiting for the finishing touches or to be packaged up and shipped.