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Buying Local Matters

Purchasing built-to-last, ‘Made in USA’ goods from businesses in our backyard comes back to us manyfold.

Why buy “Made in the USA” from locally owned and operated businesses, particularly when it comes to home furnishings? The answers are various, and doing so is not only a good choice for quality-seeking consumers, but keeps the local economy healthy.

First, quality, American furniture is made to last for the next generation or more — it’s meant to be passed down to family, according to Pam Mueller, who owns and operates Crystal Lake’s Mueller Interiors with husband George.

Made in America brands Mueller offers include Vanguard, Kincaid, Creative Elegance, Comfort Design, and Hunter Douglas blinds and shades.

Offering these products is in line with the home furnishing industry’s movement toward more domestically built products. “The result is higher quality, more variety and shorter delivery time,” she  said. “Back orders from Asia equal months. Back orders for U.S. products generally equal days or weeks.

“Not  to  mention,  transportation  of  products halfway around the world consumes a great amount of natural resources,” she added. “It  is  more  environmentally  friendly  to  purchase locally.”

A typical misconception by consumers is that bigger stores offer similar products for less money. “This is not true,” added Melissa Thomson, Mueller interior designer. “Mass market stores generally offer inferior quality imported drapery panels, blinds, furniture and more.”

Buying from local independent retailers like Mueller comes with huge benefits from a customer service perspective, too, Thomson said. “Service at our smaller store, as well as our knowledge, far surpasses any mass market retailer,” she asserted.

“We at Mueller take pride in our reliable and genuine approach to service,” Mueller added. “We are unique in that we operate our own drapery and upholstery workroom to better service our clients interested in custom drapery or bedding and reupholstery.”

Local Benefits

Buying domestically manufactured goods from local vendors boosts the local and national economy, according to George.

“The goods and services that you purchase from small businesses increase sales for U.S. companies, which results in the hiring — or saving  — of jobs at home,” he said.

“The higher earnings increase income tax revenue, the higher earnings increase local spending [trickle up], which promotes more hiring of workers, leading to more spending —  and this positive cycle moves forward,” he added. “The money spent in a local economy stays local. The tax dollars support the cities and states where the money is spent.”

Supporting local independent businesses also means fostering a high quality of life in our community. “These stores not only provide better products and services, they give back the community,” Pam said. “Simply buying good ol’ ‘Made in USA’ products goes so far.”

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