By CRISTINA JANNEY
A local furniture showroom is expanding its footprint in Hays with more warehouse space and a discount retail offering.
Braden Miller, manager and owner of the Ashley HomeStore in Hays, said the store, 2702 Vine, has been so busy, it needs space to expand. Both the new Furniture Clearance Center and Ashley HomeStore in Hays, are affiliated with Miller's of Claflin.
The Ashley HomeStore has been in Hays 14 years.
Miller has entered into a 15-year lease at 3300 Vine St., the former Hasting's Building next to Hobby Lobby.
About 65 percent of the 25,000-square-foot building will be used for warehouse space.
Miller said people don't want to wait weeks for furniture any more. He called it the "Amazon effect."
He said the additional warehouse space will allow the local store to deliver furniture in days instead of weeks.
"Now were are going to be 70 to 80 percent in stock," Miller said. "If you order from my HomeStore, mostly it will be available for pick up that day or next day deliver on almost all of our products."
The showroom space will be used to showcase items at reasonable price points. These may be discontinued items, scratch and dent, as well as non-Ashley lines that can't be featured in the main showroom in Hays.
The HomeStore can only carry Ashley products, but the Clearance Center will be able to carry Flexsteel, La-Z-Boy, Best, Klaussner, Chrome Cast caster chairs and other brand names, Miller said.
"We have a Furniture Clearance Center in Salina, and it has done amazing," he said. "We are going to have all kinds of price points and incredible deals and buys that we can get and retail out of the front half of this store."
Miller said he thought the Clearance Center will be a good option for college students.
"I think we are going to have a really good product here — nothing used, but really good price points where people can get $150 to $200 sofas that are still brand new, but may be discontinued."
The new space is being renovated. An overhead door was added for truck deliveries, and two walls were knocked out to open up warehouse space.
The store is also still receiving stock for its retail space.
Miller said he hopes to have a soft opening for the new showroom by early October. A grand opening will follow later in October.
"The community of Hays since we opened the store here has been incredibly unbelievable," Miller said. "Western Kansans have come. They have given us a shot over some of the bigger boys like the Nebraska Furniture Mart.
"Having this and product in stock and valuable price points is our way of giving back to the community. We are committed to Hays, and we are definitely going to be here to stay."