By Sandra Zunino
With a sluggish real estate market, many homeowners are finding it more economical to upgrade their existing houses rather than search for something better. Saving precious dollars by purchasing building materials at drastically discounted prices only increases the investment potential.
At Builders’ Surplus Outlet in Easton, homeowners and contractors alike can find top quality items at enormous savings. Founded by partners Steve Wheeler and Stuart Johnson, Builder’s Surplus opened last March.
The partners’ combined experience and contacts in the building industry, coupled with today’s economic climate have turned the new business into an immediate success story. Steve has 30 years of experience in the building products business and Stuart has been in the construction trades for just as many years.
In light of the recession, many builders and building supply houses are struggling and need to get rid of overstocked merchandise. Steve and Stuart find sources with large quantities of building materials such as doors, window, tile and flooring, and purchase these materials at significant discounts. In turn, they are able to offer name brand materials to their customers at as much as 50 percent of their retail value.
“We go to bankruptcy sales, auctions and even bid online for large quantities of materials,” says Steve. “Almost everything we have is top quality, packaged correctly, brand new materials.”
“These are not used, broken or seconds,” he adds. Often the inventory at Builders’ Surplus comes directly from manufactures. In many cases, the manufacturers provide the same warranty as they do for products purchased through retail chains.
Occasionally, Builders’ Surplus will offer architectural salvage items on consignment, such as a large cupola that recently came from a historical building, but it must be in excellent condition to meet their stringent standards.
Additionally, Builders’ Surplus has developed an ongoing line of kitchen cabinets and bathroom vanities as well as marble and granite vanity tops from an established international manufacturer. Constructed of solid wood, opposed to particleboard, this high-end cabinetry is available at Builder’s Surplus for up to 40 percent of what traditional kitchen retailers charge.
These products are name-brand items that received a high rating from Consumers Digest, according to Steve. The cabinets are available assembled at the warehouse, or can be purchased ready to assemble so the do-it-yourselfer can reap even greater savings.
While shopping at Builders’ Surplus is a true warehouse experience, there are people available to help answer questions and assist with loading purchased items. In fact, Stuart often helps customers with kitchen design and offers installation advice. Office Manager, Sewell Cox also lends design and decorating suggestions to buyers.
Composite decking, PVC trim, various colors of ceramic tile, windows and doors of many styles, oak, bamboo, teak and even laminate flooring – the inventory is always changing. Every visit to Builders’ Surplus is a treasure hunt. Customers usually pick up materials on site, but for special circumstances, Builders’ Surplus will arrange delivery service.
Builders’ Surplus Outlet is located just off Goldsborough Road at 505 North Street, near Rails and Trails, behind Easton Ice. They are open Tuesday through Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information, call 410-770-9754.