Home renovations - why it pays to buy BermudaArticle by Pembroke Tile & Stone
What fun imagining and planning our projects are in today’s world. When it comes to updating or renovating your home, we have access to wonderful and inspiring images via online sites such as Houzz and Pinterest. We can see what the latest trends are or what our favourite designer or celebrity is doing with their homes. Magazines such House & Garden, House Beautiful etc. are filled with beautiful homes and spaces to spur our imagination and creative minds.
When choosing certain products for your home renovation, such as tile, you may be tempted to go directly online to start shopping. However, there are plenty of great reasons to begin your shopping locally and with time and planning one can expand and customize your choices when renovating or building in Bermuda.
More Personalized Service
Local businesses often hire people with a better understanding of the products they are selling and take more time to get to know customers. They have a vested interest in knowing how to serve you and tend to be passionate about what they do. In a place like Bermuda, with our unique climate, you’re also going to have local experts who can guide you on which tile, for example, may work better for your home in terms of durability, slip resistance etc.
They will also most likely have samples available. Some of the big chain hardware stores are unlikely to send samples, so you won’t always know what you’re getting before it arrives. Going to a local store means you can get a feel for texture, durability, etc. before buying.
Employees also have access to detailed info about the product thus ensuring the product is suitable for the application. And, if you don’t see what you’re looking for, customer representatives are usually happy to source a product from their vendor suppliers. Expert knowledge is also on hand to assist with installation questions and are usually willing and able to visit your renovation project and advise solutions to any issues you may be experiencing.
Better Customer Service
If you decide to purchase from overseas, you’ll have little recourse if the order arrives broken or incorrect. Even when you speak to a customer service representative, that person is so far removed from the decision-making process and there’s little concern that the company will lose you as a customer. Not so if you purchased your goods locally. For example, tile is heavy and can be damaged at any point during the shipping process. A company like Pembroke Tile & Stone will stand by its products and have the relationship with the manufacturer to correct and replace any problematic materials.
Even if the order is in one piece and correct, it may turn out that it doesn’t work in your home at all. But now you’re probably stuck with it. Local businesses will regularly bring in samples of items a client wants to special order so they can approve colour, texture, etc. as a picture doesn’t always translate well in reality. It’s always wise to ask for a sample, as these can look quite different in a catalogue or online. This applies to tile, natural stone, carpet, fabrics, and wood finishes.
Many business owners in the industry have undertaken renovation and construction projects themselves and are familiar with many of the issues that can arise. They are also familiar with custom ordering - whether it be appliances, wood flooring, lighting, window treatments, doors and windows and can guide you in you the right direction when making big purchases.
It’s easy to think that the best deals can only be found online and overseas, however you might be surprised how competitive prices can be here in Bermuda when you factor in shipping costs and customs duty. Most home renovation related businesses buy directly from the factory so there might be price savings. Added value is obtained by shipping orders with stock material in containers, and you’re more likely to get better quality goods and value.
These companies work with numerous international vendors who have large and varied product ranges – too many to stock but very easy to special order. Such items would be loaded with other materials from that vendor in a regular shipping schedule to coincide as closely as possible with the date required on the project site
Strengthening the Community
When you buy goods from local businesses, the money stays in the community. Several studies have shown that when you buy from an independent, locally owned business, rather than purchasing from big chain stores, significantly more of your money is used to make purchases from other local businesses and service providers — continuing to strengthen the economic base of the community. These smaller businesses are the backbone of our community and buying from them helps to ensure a strong and sustainable local community as well as having a positive effect on the health of jobs.
Local businesses like Pembroke Tile & Stone carry large inventories of products carefully selected to meet most design aesthetics and accommodate those who have tighter time frames or have immediate needs. They have been in the tile business for 30 years and have invested in systems to order and track materials. Suppliers respond quickly with information on availability of the products and production lead times that can be conveyed to you and set expectations. For more information, visit www.pts.bm or our showroom on Serpentine Road.