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Retail

Area Rugs Q4 Outlook: Dealers Optimistic That Good Times Will Roll On

RugNews.com surveys flooring retailers across the country who have had a banner year with area rugs, to find out what they expect for fourth quarter sales.

RugNews.com Editors
9/29/2021
image of a shaped seating area with traditional styled area rug in neutral tones
As the fourth quarter begins, rug sales have picked up at Marshall Carpet One Floor & Home and Rug Gallery, which features this design on its website.

SPECIAL REPORT -- Flooring retailers are optimistic that the fourth quarter will put the finishing touches on what has been a stellar 2021 for rug sales.

“In the first three quarters of 2021 we saw a 20 percent increase over 2020,” said Susan Hadinger, president of Hadinger Flooring, in Naples, Fla., the largest stocking dealer of area rugs in the Sunshine State. Hadinger said the sales activity is being fueled by the increased focus on home improvement. “Also, as is the case with many things right now, stock is king,” Hadinger said. “And we are well situated with over 8,000 rugs in stock. We also do a fair amount of fabricated rugs from broadloom and have seen little or no disruption there.”



Rug sales are up 20 percent for Hadinger Flooring, which stocks more than 8,000 area rugs.

Hadinger Flooring is a member of the influential National Floorcovering Alliance (NFA), a group of 43 retailers that rank among the most prestigious in flooring. Another member of that group, Phoenix-based Baker Bros., is also seeing a windfall in 2021. “Sales of rugs have shown a significant increase over 2020 and even more than 20 percent over 2019,” said Phil Koufidakis, president. “Like all other home furnishing items, the market for remodel/redecorate is extremely strong. This is the key factor to the growth.”


Sales of rugs at Baker Bros. have shown a significant increase over 2020.


Great Lakes Carpet & Tile, with multiple stores in central Florida near The Villages, is another member of the NFA that has been faring well with rugs. “In the last three years we have gotten into the rug business pretty seriously, and we’re making money off the rugs,” said Darren Hearns, president. He cautioned that some rug lines are difficult to get these days due to delays in back orders from overseas, such as India, as the global supply chain slowdown impacts every industry that imports.

 
Great Lakes Carpet & Tile capitalizes on rugs to complement its hard surface flooring.

Despite these challenges, rugs have become a go-to category for many retailers. “Entering the fourth quarter, our rug sales have picked up,” said Matt Wien, sales manager, Marshall Carpet One Floor & Home and Rug Gallery, Mayfield Heights, Ohio. “Usually, the hint of winter gets people thinking about warming up the home and protecting their hard surfaces.”

A fellow Ohio retailer, The Rug Gallery in Cincinnati, also figures to benefit by the cooler weather, although the summer months were hot as well. “Business has remained strong during the third quarter,” owner Sam Presnell said. “Definitely the fabricated rugs from broadloom have been the largest growth. Overall, we are up double digits over our goal for this year.”

Presnell cited pent up demand in the wake of the long COVID lockdown — and surging hard surface sales — as giving a nice boost to rug sales.


Speaking of boosts, Brian’s Flooring & Design in Birmingham, Ala., expects to end the year up 35 percent to 40 percent over last year, with soft surface sales up an astounding 200 percent (carpet and rugs combined). “We are still seeing signs of customers wanting to spend their saved up disposable funds on home improvements,” said Mindy Arnette, residential sales manager. “And as always, the upcoming holiday season definitely gets customers wanting to spruce up their homes.”

The Rug Rack & Home Décor, in Chattanooga, Tenn., is also looking for a nice end to what has been an above-average year, according to Miriam Thompson, co-owner. “Our numbers are running just ahead of last year, where we saw significant growth in our business,” she said. “We are still seeing better quality goods being sold and more custom purchases to fit the client's particular style.”

One area of concern for Thompson is price increase on products and freight. As she explained, “Some of our customers have opted for the lesser priced product because of the increase of the particular products they were considering. Would that have happened anyway? Maybe or maybe not. We have offered to some free delivery or discounted rug pads to help soften the deal. We are not insensitive to how things are going down and want our customers to see we are trying to work with them where we can.”

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