Many consumers aren’t aware that wholesale showroom shopping is a good starting point to get ideas flowing.
“Unfortunately, many homeowners have the perception that wholesale showrooms are only for those with deep pockets, who are working with an interior designer, or are building a new home,” says Beth Allison of Moen. “But in reality, most wholesale showrooms are open to the general public and are staffed with style-savvy, knowledgeable design consultants who can serve as valuable resources for anyone looking to build, remodel or just refresh their kitchens and bathrooms.”
Still intimidated by the thought of a wholesale showroom? Fear not! The following are tips on what to expect and how to find the right mix of products at your local wholesale showroom:
Do Your Homework
Beginning is as easy as logging on to your computer. A simple Internet search of the term “wholesale plumbing showrooms,” along with your city, will quickly bring up a list of showrooms in your neighborhood. In addition, many manufacturers, such as Moen, offer “Where to Buy” functions on their Web sites, which provide a list of nearby showrooms.
Before venturing out to your local wholesale showroom, be sure to check which ones are open to the public and which are for trade professionals only. Showrooms open to the public sometimes conduct consumer orientation programs and tours, a great way to familiarize yourself with the showroom and see if stocks your favorite brands.
If you can’t take advantage of a tour, visit the showroom anyway and look around on your own. Many showrooms offer virtual tours online, so it’s worth your time to visit their Web sites beforehand.
Compiling a list of questions, including brands and specific products you find interesting, will also help streamline your wholesale showroom shopping. According to showroom consultants, a majority of consumers come to wholesale showrooms with information in mind about the type (77 percent) and style (76 percent) of faucet they prefer. If you fall into the “undecided” category, search through magazines and the Internet, and bring along clippings and pictures of styles you like.
Browsing and Buying at Showrooms
One advantage of wholesale showroom shopping is getting exposed to the most innovative and stylish products from today’s top designers and manufacturers. For example, when looking to purchase a new faucet, wholesale showrooms display many of the latest products with innovative features such as pull-down and pull-out spouts, as well as popular new finishes, including oil-rubbed bronze, antique bronze and matte black. Showroom consultants can be another great resource and advantage. They know the latest trends and can recommend products to suit your lifestyle.
In addition, showrooms often feature products in vignettes made to look like actual kitchens and baths, which give homeowners a real sense of how these products would look in their homes. “Showrooms are ideal because they don’t feature any one trend or style that overshadows others – they offer a nice spectrum of all types, styles and price ranges to allow homeowners to be creative in their selection process,” Allison says.
The following are just a few of the most innovative products seen in today’s wholesale plumbing showrooms:
Moen’s new Rothbury collection features a cottage-style design and is Moen’s first faucet to offer a water-saving aerator – a 1.5 gallon-per-minute aerator for environmentally conscious homeowners. It is also one of the first faucets to receive WaterSense certification, indicating the fixture has met the Environmental Protection Agency’s guidelines as an environmentally responsible and efficient product. The Rothbury collection is available in today’s most popular finishes.
The state-of-the-art Toto Neorest toilet has nearly as many options as a new sport utility vehicle. Features include a bidet with temperature control, a dryer, deodorizer, automatic sensor seat, Cyclone flushing system, remote control and heated seat with temperature control.
“When shopping in a showroom,” Allison adds, “don’t be overwhelmed by the size and number of products offered. Don’t be afraid to share a realistic budget with the consultants. It will help you both in selecting products that are right for you and your home. Lastly, remember to enjoy the experience. Showrooms are a virtual wonderland of new products, styles and trends and have offered design inspiration to thousands of homeowners.”
You can visit a Moen Showroom of Distinction at General Plumbing Supply Company, 6085 Brentwood Blvd. in Brentwood. The phone number is 925-634-6660.
– Courtesy of ARA Content