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By Thomas J. Sullivan–
Times and product inventory have changed through the years, but Hall’s Furniture, one of Citrus Heights’ oldest, still-operating businesses, continues to thrive decades after being first opened by John Hall in 1946.
Owner Mike Harper grew up in Citrus Heights before it was incorporated, and today keeps the legacy of Hall’s Furniture proudly in his family. He purchased the business from John’s son, Ralph, 22 years ago in 1997.
In pre-incorporation days, the site of Hall’s Furniture on Mariposa Avenue between Old Auburn Road and Watson Way was in the heart of a small shopping center serving a growing community.
The Hall family operated a grocery store adjacent to the furniture store until the 1960s. The original Citrus Heights Post Office was once located in the back portion of the furniture store.
“We began remodeling a little at a time in those early years. At one time it was just me and the delivery guy,” he said modestly. “I didn’t have much in the bank back then.”
Now in his early 60s, and still an avid off-road motorcycle racer in his spare time, Harper acknowledges that he’s not ready for retirement any time soon. “Business is simply too good to slow down,” he said.
“We just had the biggest first quarter for sales in our history,” Harper said. “It’s surprising that a local furniture business like this, in a largely residential location like ours, remains competitive, but it has.”
In the 22 years since he started, Harper said he’s watched the number of independent furniture stores in the greater Citrus Heights area steadily decline.
“We’re able to compete with major furniture retailers in price, service and delivery,” he said. “The children of long-time customers keep coming back, and new Citrus Heights arrivals are discovering Hall’s Furniture’s reputation for price, selection and custom orders.”
Hall’s 12,000-square-foot floor space is chock full of furniture, recliners and mattresses organized into themed display areas from leading brands such as Tempur-Pedic, Bassett, Lane and Simmons.
Shoppers can still see tell-tale signs of the store’s rich history, with segments of the store still noticeably sectioned off into five areas — one for each different business that once made up a small shopping center on Mariposa Avenue. The store’s footprint expanded to include a former dress shop and a variety store.
Harper fondly remembers when the last console television was still in his store’s inventory. Hall’s Furniture was once known as one of the biggest volume Zenith television dealers in the greater Citrus Heights area. Gone too are video tape recorders which when the technology was introduced, were immediate popular sellers.
“It broke my heart to see the last console television sold here. It reminded me when I first began working here, and I almost didn’t want to sell it,” he remembered.
Washers and dryers were dropped from the product line when the day’s prominent manufacturers such as Maytag and other domestic brands shifted their production overseas. “I didn’t want to sell what wasn’t made in the United States,” he said.
Hall’s Furniture’s five-star online ratings attest that its approach of personal, old-fashioned customer service over the years is among many distinctive aspects customers say they appreciate. Delivery service is typically available by the next business day.
Walk-in customer traffic remains brisk, Harper said, as customers, new to Hall’s Furniture and to the Citrus Heights area, “find they have no need to visit multiple stores to find furniture that’s a perfect fit for their living room, dining room, bedroom, and home office.”
“We’re a one-stop shop,” Harper said.
Hall’s Furniture on the web at www.hallsfurniture.com at 7752 Mariposa Ave. in Citrus Heights is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 10 to 4 p.m.
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