Take that, Tariffs – raising a fist to 25%

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Staying competitive in times of trade war is always a challenge. But, like any good business, you must gather yourself and find a way to rise above and get ahead of the competition.

That certainly seems like a daunting task when CNBC’s Jim Cramer warns, "Higher rates and higher [tariffs] are setting us up for a very difficult end of the year — not to mention 2019 — unless something's done to ameliorate these two different houses of pain."

Yet, as Furniture Today’s list of tariffs grows, American manufacturers can breathe a sigh of semi-relief. Brandon Culpepper, CRO of Orian Rugs in Anderson, SC explains, “Orian is well-positioned to serve American retailers in the current economic environment. Our products are made in America. Not only that, they are made exclusively in America. This means that Orian rugs are designed, the yarn is extruded, and the rugs are woven, finished, and shipped from under one roof in Anderson, SC. Orian is vertical, efficient and domestic - which means that the styling and value we offer stands out in the industry more than it ever has before. We are America’s answer for woven rugs in this era of price hikes due to tariffs and raw material price increases.”

With an impending tariff increase of 25% slated for January 2019, many are trying to get ahead of the curve by ordering “new year” products now. Unfortunately, even the most conscientious planner cannot sidestep the logistics challenges faced by importers desperately seeking reliable transportation in an already overwhelmed system. To add to the complication, Chinese New Year celebrations commence on February 5, 2019 – ensuring Chinese manufacturing plants halt operations for a week or more.  

So, with an ear to this past July when the president threatened to raise tariffs to $500 billion if necessary, we’re suggesting that the way out is in. Sourcing product made in the U.S.A. is a valid and valuable alternative to the terrifying reality of 25% or more. After all, American manufacturing is on the rise – having added 370,000 jobs in the last two years – these companies are ready to serve. And, as Culpepper so aptly noted, “[American businesses] are perfectly positioned to support the home furnishings industry during this time of trouble.”

With that, we offer a nod to American made.

California House – Sacramento, CA

Cliff Young – NYC

Copeland – Bradford, VT

DutchCrafters – Sarasota, FL

Harden – McConnelsville, NY

Johnston Casuals – Wilkesboro, NC

Kincaid - Western North Carolina

Orian Rugs – Anderson, SC

Simplicity Sofas – High Point, NC

The Woodland Mills – Glenville, PA

Vermont Wood Studios – Stonehurst, VT

Vaughn-Bassett – Galax, VA and Elkin, NC

Vintage Mill Werks – Nashville, TN

Virgin Timber Lumber Company – Southern West Virginia

WUD Furniture Design – Brooklyn, NY