It’s a million-dollar question: why is furniture so hard to get now? The pandemic, unusual weather patterns, and labor shortages are to blame.

The days of running down to the furniture store and taking home what you want the same day have come and gone. And while this type of convenience is possible again in the future, the furniture industry continues to deal with backlogs and bottlenecks that mean you’ll have to plan ahead when it’s time to order furniture. But why is furniture so hard to get now?

The Problem Of The Pandemic


Before the pandemic, all you had to do was walk into any furniture store in Columbia, TN, pick your piece, and wait a few days for delivery (or simply load it into your vehicle on the spot). However, global lockdowns in 2020 meant people were spending more time at home. More time at home meant that we noticed all the little things we didn’t like about our spaces, especially our furniture. So people started shopping.


Unfortunately, the isolation orders and health restrictions that happened throughout the spring and summer also meant that factories shut down temporarily. And when they were allowed to open, it was with a skeleton crew whose members often found themselves in quarantine for two weeks or more at any given time.

Shipping Snags


Labor shortages, economic factors, and lingering pandemic problems also created major issues with shipping from international ports into the United States. Most pieces at your local furniture store aren’t manufactured within driving distance; instead, parts and whole pieces may be shipped in from Vietnam or other countries steeped in the furniture production industry. During the pandemic and through 2022, it was not uncommon for shipping to take months once products were available.

And Then There Was Ice


Another significant issue that has affected furniture production since 2021 was the devastating ice storm in Texas, a state not prone to deep freezing. As Texas is one of the leading states for foam production, downed power lines, damaged buildings, and other storm-related hazards further added to manufacturing backlogs.

When Will It Get Easier?


There is a bright spot in all of this, and that is that 2022 brought less demand for furniture overall. This means that manufacturers and retailers now have an opportunity to catch up. However, it might be a while before furniture stores in Columbia, Nashville, and the surrounding areas can offer instant gratification. If you are looking for furniture and you need it by a certain date, experts from The Linen Duck recommend the following:


  • Plan ahead. Planning ahead is good advice for just about any situation where you’re making any purchase. When it’s time to shop for furniture, and you know you need it by a certain date, give yourself a three to four-week cushion when speaking with your furniture store sales rep. If you need something by August 1, for example, ask about delivery by July 1.


  • Visit the store in person. Your local furniture store likely has pieces in stock. Even if they do not, they are more likely to be able to work closely with you to ensure you get your furniture when you need it most. Remember, when you shop small, you are not a customer number and an invoice; you are a person that will get your furniture store’s full attention.


There’s not much that furniture stores can do at the retail level to ensure their customers get what they want when they need it. However, it’s important as a consumer to understand the problems and to look for solutions that may help you avoid the frustrations of lingering delays.


The Linen Duck Boutique Interiors is the brainchild of interior designer and founder Becky Smith. The furniture store offers shoppers in Columbia and the surrounding areas access to high-end boutique pieces, many of which can be customized from an extensive palette of fabrics and finishes. The Linen Duck also offers a full line of designer rugs, pillows, and accent pieces, so that homeowners can complete their look. When Smith is not busy running the furniture store, she continues to provide interior design services. The Linen Duck is quickly becoming the area’s go-to showroom. Pop in for a visit to see why.