Gregg Moore is a good talker: He talked his way into proudly owning 69-yr-previous Lake Forest Flooring, purchasing the developing it occupies and encompassing himself with faithful shoppers and a veteran staff.
None of that was planned.
Moore is a normal salesman who has spent 25 several years advertising flooring, fortunately speaking about his products and solutions and building associations.
He commenced in 1996 with a firm that marketed unfinished hardwood. In 2000, he joined Mohawk flooring business as a gross sales agent. For 14 many years, Moore termed on vendors throughout the Upstate and into North Carolina.
Which is when a person customer, Martha Woods, turned a good friend, and items took an surprising convert.
Woods had taken over Lake Forest Carpet (now Lake Forest Flooring) from her father, Carl Summey, who founded the store in 1952 in the same spot the place it stands nowadays, 1334 N Pleasantburg Dr.
Moore vividly remembers their discussion in 2013. “Martha explained, ‘Gregg, I am likely to provide my retail outlet, and I want you to acquire it.’”
He wished her effectively, then firmly declined.
Moore turned her down once again a month afterwards. But she was undeterred. “The Lord place your name on my heart,” she explained to him. “You’re likely to get my retail outlet. Go dwelling and talk to your spouse, pray about it, and see what comes about.
“After a pair of months of praying … That is how we bought this retail store. This place will be 70 years aged in 2022,” suggests Moore, who was born and reared in Greer and owns a house in Taylors with his spouse, Mitzi.
Mitzi’s view? “She was all for it.”
Moore officially purchased the company a few months later. Afterwards, he acquired his constructing and the 1 following to it when his 96-calendar year-aged landlord died.
Now, he works by using his present of gab and expertise about flooring to serve clients.
“Our business enterprise is generational. Folks come in due to the fact their wonderful-grandparents bought flooring from us in the ’50s, and their grandparents acquired, their mother and dad acquired, and now they are acquiring.”
The retail outlet – aspect of a strip of merchants across from Bob Jones University and much larger than it seems – carries ceramic tile, hardwood, laminate, luxury vinyl plank, carpet and region rugs.
Flooring has adjusted a great deal through the decades.
Luxury vinyl plank is the trendiest item, Moore suggests. “LVP is quite incredibly hot.” It’s effortless to sustain, comes in numerous textures and colors, and can be eradicated easily when owners want a alter. It is also durable and resistant to scratches and water (although not scratch-proof or flood-proof, Moore cautions).
Laminate, well known in the mid-1990s, is building a comeback, he states. “Laminate is a rough product or service.”
Carpet is also popular and has been engineered to be additional sturdy. “These days, it is really pet-pleasant, child-evidence, and wine-proof. Carpet has arrive a very long way in 20 a long time.”
Hardwood floors are nevertheless most common. “Most residences we do are hard area. They are timeless, long lasting, and can be refinished several times.”
The fallout from COVID-19 has made decisions hard. “Everything has long gone up in price tag,” Moore says. “My vendors give me 5 days on the selling price of wooden. It goes up weekly.”
Luxury vinyl plank now costs about 20% additional, he says, simply because the solution is made in China, Cambodia or Vietnam. Carpet generation was affected when the mills were understaffed, and padding is also in quick offer.
Transport may well be the primary situation, Moore claims. “Some products are 3 months out.”
Even with the hurdles, business has been constant due to the fact March, he states. “Walk-in traffic has been great. We’re grateful. It was difficult final 12 months. We survived, but it was challenging.”
For Moore, Lake Forest Flooring is about provider.
“We are above-the-best helpful. Persons like that. They realize that,” he suggests.
Maye-Webb McCauley, a whole-time inside designer, can support clients match flooring or carpet to paint and cloth hues, or even enable place a total area with each other.
The dimensions of the job doesn’t make a difference, Moore claims. “We’ll do the job on the tiny bathroom, or we’ll do the complete dwelling. If we do one particular bed room, commonly some thing else arrives afterwards. Repeat business enterprise is how we keep in business.”
Moore also understands that earning flooring selections is complicated. He recollects hearing that people store at four or 5 suppliers before producing a acquire.
“The very same man or woman will buy a automobile or truck in a few hrs,” he says. “You acquire a auto maybe two occasions in 10 many years. You purchase floor masking after or 2 times in a life time.”
Which is wherever Moore’s team can help. “Lake Forest is distinctive because our staff members is well-informed and personable,” he states.
McCauley joined the retailer months just after Moore bought it he knew her from his times at Mohawk. “I knew she experienced a talent,” he says.
Patty Byars began operating aspect time when Moore wooed her away from retirement. She is educated in design and style and flooring and has labored at quite a few outlets in the location. Joan Corridor was also retired when she agreed to choose on a couple several hours a week.
Most senior of all, Mark Epps predates Moore. He labored comprehensive-time at Lake Forest for 40 many years. Now, he operates a person day a week, normally.
That practical experience provides up: Moore’s 25 yrs, McCauley with 25-plus, Byars has about 28, and Epps and Hall have 40 a long time every single – practically 160 complete years in the flooring business enterprise.
The Moores’ children enable, as well.
Their daughter, Jenna – Director of Income and Community Relations at Pay a visit to Johnson Metropolis, Tennessee – helps with social media. Their son, Josh, is in true estate but makes deliveries, watches in excess of the retail outlet, or features business information when desired.
Moore is also proud of his subcontractors. A person crew does wood ground refinishing. Other people do set up.
“My finish dude has been in this article 30 yrs. He did my house, 20-one thing a long time ago. It means something to be capable to preserve persons doing work for you for that long,” he says.
Planned or not, Moore is content with his choice to very own a business. “I like it. It truly is hard. Final calendar year was incredibly demanding. But we came by it. We kept likely. It can be been a superior 8 a long time. And we look ahead to serving the Upstate for many years to come.”