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Eastern Carolina furniture shoppers may have to wait up to a year

For the furniture industry and several others, order delays are the result of labor and material shortages.
Published: Jun. 22, 2021 at 7:16 PM EDT
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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - Customers now have to wait longer for their purchases following labor and material shortages, including furniture, which could take up to a year to get.

Britt Laughinghouse is the President of Bostic Sugg Furniture Store in Greenville. He says though wait time varies by order, stationary couches are currently the highest in demand and take the longest to ship.

“If they’re ordering a sofa, sometimes a year to get it, when it used to take 6 to 8 weeks,” he said.

Laughinghouse said he’s run into the same problem with several customers lately. He explained that it is due to a shortage of labor, materials and containers to ship the orders in. That, coupled with high demand, translates into the longest wait times they’ve seen in a while.

“As orders are building up, there’s not enough supplies to get it built, so the lead times are unprecedented,” said Laughinghouse.

For many future homeowners who want to fill their homes as soon as possible, it may be a waiting game.

“Devastating,” said Trey Moore, who aimed to buy furniture with his wife in two weeks’ time. “My wife, she’s ready to move in. She wants her living room done first.”

Laughinghouse said while domestic products are easier to get, those that come from overseas, particularly couches, are likely to take 9 months to a year.

Furniture is not the only industry affected; several others have been majorly impacted by the US labor shortage following the COVID-19 pandemic.

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