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Furniture Among Items Majorly Delayed Due To COVID-19 Effect On Supply Chains

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us that our lives are globally intertwined. Shopping and shipping are good examples, and you may have noticed some serious delays on goods coming into Chicago.

Now many customers are changing how they shop.

"I love a deal. In fact, that's my whole business plan, said Kellie Scott, CEO of North Riverside's Divine Consign, where discount furniture reigns. "We get the closeouts, the returns, their 'Oops, the wrong kind of fabric.' Or off the showroom floor."

But beyond deals, its biggest selling point lately is delivery, and the fact that they can do it within days has Scott's business booming.

"Not only an increase in the amount of people but in the amount of people who are actually talking or complaining about the delays and the lack of inventory in regular furniture stores," she said.

If you've tried to order even basic furniture lately, you've likely been met with wait times lasting many months -- up to seven in some cases -- and that's led customers to shops like Scott's.

"Because what are you going to sit on for that long?" she asked.

"People don't want to wait for the newer or they can't wait," said Rob Karr with the Illinois Retail Merchants Association.

Karr confirms the backlog.

"With everything opening all at once, essentially it does put additional strain on supply issues," hes aid.

We may be more ready to shop, but issues with supplies and staffing in this pande'mic continue, and that return to full strength won't happen fast.

You could also consider this a warning for your Christmas list. Experts say this time of year, retailers usually frontload their orders so they have enough inventory for the holiday shopping season, but you can expect those delays to last through the end of the year.

"Best we can say by looking at all the data available and talking to experts, its going to be several months," said Karr.

In the meantime, your best option might be shopping in different ways.

"I wouldn't say it's a blessing; it's a change," Scott said.

Scott said if you're looking for something to sit on, "we're happy to fill the gaps."

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