Cash- and Credit-Strapped Customers May Be Choosing to Rent Furniture Rather Than Buy Home Furnishings Outright, Company Says
PLANO, TX--(Marketwire - April 6, 2009) - ColorTyme, America's oldest franchisor of rent-to-own furniture, appliance and electronics stores said today its franchisees reported an increase in furniture rentals during the first three months of 2009, even though traditional retailers held huge after-holiday clearance sales on big-ticket items such as bedroom furniture, living room, furniture, and dining room furniture.
"In this economy, consumers appear to be avoiding large cash outlays and refraining from putting large purchases on their credit cards," said Albert Kohut, ColorTyme's vice president of operations. "Instead, it seems many people are being cautious and are choosing to rent their furniture and other durable goods rather than buying them outright."
Kohut said ColorTyme stores' rent-to-own agreements let customers make large purchases for necessities like mattresses, dining room furniture and sofas without large down payments or long-term purchase contracts. "If a ColorTyme customer loses a job or faces other financial distress, they can suspend their rent-to-own furniture contract until they get back on their feet," Kohut said. "We'll pick up the furniture and give them credit for every penny they've spent when they are once again ready to resume their furniture rental agreement."
Bedroom furniture and mattress rentals are the most highly requested furniture items at ColorTyme right now, Kohut said, but calls from people who want to rent living room furniture are also increasing.
ColorTyme, Inc., founded in 1979, is America's oldest franchisor of independently owned-and-operated rent-to-own stores. ColorTyme franchisees operate 206 rent-to-own stores in 33 states, and the company's custom-wheels-and-tires franchise brand, RimTyme, operates 24 stores in 11 states. ColorTyme is headquartered in Plano, Texas, and is an independent, wholly owned subsidiary of the largest RTO company in the world, Rent-A-Center (NASDAQ: RCII).