How much does it cost to be a Furniture First Member?
A one-time $1,250 shareholder’s stock fee is assessed upon approval by the Board of Directors. Quarterly dues are $750 and are typically deducted from the Member’s quarterly rebates. In addition to dues, Furniture First charges each Member company a very small allocation percentage (20%) of their collected rebates. Membership pays for itself when you buy into our vendor partner programs. The average rebate amounts to over $28,000 per Member, per year.
How is Furniture First organized?
Furniture First is a cooperative corporation. Each Member, regardless of size, owns one share of stock in the cooperative.
Are Members required to buy specific lines or merchandise?
Furniture First has only one mandatory buy which is our private label mattress program. This program is manufactured by one of the nation’s leading bedding brands. Member’s typical enjoy higher margins than national brands and appreciate that the private label cannot be “shopped” in their marketplace. The only other requirement is that Members must invest 30% of their merchandise and service expenses with approved Furniture First vendor partners. It’s easy for Members to do this with our portfolio of more than 100 merchandise suppliers and more than 40 service partners. While 30% is the requirement (new members have two years to build to this level), the average Member directs almost 50% of their purchases to Furniture First partners.
How much money will I save?
The amount of money you save depends on the amount of money you spend with our vendor partners. The average rebate amounts to over $28,000 per Member, per year.
In addition to rebates, Members save money on their purchases with pricing discounts. For example, Members enrolled in our Broyhill Billing Program can save up to 15% off standard Broyhill pricing. Due to this program, one Member was able to save $20,000 on Broyhill purchases in 2010.
Will I have to change how I pay for furniture?
For most of our supplier programs, you will continue to work with the supplier’s billing/accounts receivable departments as you always have. We do request that you use a “Furniture First Member” stamp on your payments so that your purchases will be tracked by the supplier for rebate accounting.
If you enroll in one of our centralized billing programs, then you will remit payment to Furniture First.
Does Furniture First have any rules regarding Membership?
Members are required to maintain a Lyons Credit Rating of a 1, 2 or 3. Members whose credit falls to a 4 or 5 are suspended. Rebates for suspended members are collected and held but not distributed; Members are not charged dues while on suspension. Members who remain on suspension for multiple quarters may be terminated at the discretion of the Board of Directors. Creditworthiness is an essential bargaining tool that our merchandisers use when negotiating programs with Supplier Partners.
How do I become a Member?
Click “Apply Today,” fill in the form and our staff will contact you for further details. If your store fits our preliminary qualifications for membership, you will be sent an application and a projected ROI worksheet. Once the application and all required documentation are received, your application will be voted on by the Board of Directors on their next monthly conference call.