Bert Sams

Director of Habitat for Humanity Thrift Store Warehouse

This is separate from the Habitat Thrift Store on Central Street. Where should people come donate?

Yes, the warehouse is on 1501 Washington Ave., but we prefer that people come to Central to donate—and since we've already got plenty of stuff, we'd really rather they'd come to shop.

What all can you buy there?

We've got a little bit of everything—doors, windows, light fixtures, paint, cabinets. A lot of building materials—some commercial, some residential.

What about the paint?

We have a little of everything. Some is mis-mixed paint from a store or someone got the wrong color. Some are quarts, gallons, five-gallon buckets.

What colors?

You have to open it, and we haven't got all of it open.

What's the most unusual item for sale?

We've probably got as many wonderful hanging chandeliers, large-foyer size, as any lighting gallery in town. These things are huge, they would go in a really large home with a two-story foyer. Some are brand new, some are really, really nice.

If you're looking for something specific, do you have to come by the warehouse often?

Yes, pretty much. We can't order it, it's whatever somebody brings us and it changes pretty frequently.

How do you establish your prices?

We try to price it at 25-30 percent of what we think it would retail for. We're trying to move this stuff.

Now that there are so many foreclosures on expensive homes, are you getting nicer stuff?

Yes, we are. I've been here eight years, and the quality of items seems to me to be better lately.

And are you getting more shoppers because of the poor economy?

Not necessarily. We're as affected by the economy as the others, especially with the gas prices. People aren't doing as much comparison shopping. But business is still very good.

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