SIDNEY – Flooding last May destroyed Ask Amy Home Furnishings’ entire inventory, but the business withstood the tribulation and on Thursday celebrated its grand opening in Sidney.
“It’s been a rough …,” Amy Zumberger said, trying to fight back tears. “I said I wasn’t going to do that.
“It’s been a rough year, but we’ve persevered.”
Zumberger operated Ask Amy Home Furnishings, Ask Amy Staging and Ask Amy Commercial Furnishings & Design in Botkins until flooding devastated her space in May 2019. She subsequently moved her businesses twice to a pair of warehouses before finding a new home at 230 E. Russell Road in Sidney.
“You have no idea,” Zumberger said. “It’s like a huge relief to finally get moved here.
“Moving a business three times is really difficult.”
After overcoming many difficulties in the past nine months, Thursday offered a festive atmosphere for Zumberger and her team of 10 employees as they held a grand opening and ribbon cutting at their new location in Sidney.
“I’m just pretty dedicated and resilient,” Zumberger said. “I was determined that we were going to come back out of this and move forward. A lot of people will just take defeat, and that’s it. That’s just not in my personality.”
Zumberger started her entrepreneurial career in May 2011 with Ask Amy Staging. Her team travels throughout Ohio to help companies and individuals stage spaces for showings and even for television commercials.
The success of her staging operation led to the creation of Ask Amy Home Furnishings and its furniture showroom in August 2013.
“So many people were saying, ‘I love what you’ve done to my house that I’m leaving, so will you come and help with my new house?’” Zumberger said.
Zumberger then added Ask Amy Commercial Furnishings & Design to her portfolio about two and a half years ago. The diversity of her businesses helped Zumberger overcome the challenges brought on by last year’s flood.
“I think it’s nine out of 10 (businesses) statistically will close after a devastation like that,” Zumberger said. “It’s difficult.
“We rallied on and moved forward. We have a great team here.”
Zumberger considered locations in Sidney, Wapakoneta and Minster to relocate her businesses before finding an ideal place in Sidney. The location on Russell Road has a loading dock, has lots of warehouse space, is close to the interstate and sees a lot of traffic pass by.
“We’re always glad to take existing businesses out of Botkins and move them here,” Sidney Mayor Mike Barhorst said during Thursday’s grand opening celebration. “I like to give the mayor (of Botkins) a hard time, and I will certainly do that in this case.”
Since December, the Ask Amy team has worked to renovate the space in Sidney and prepare for the opening of the new furniture showroom with all new products.
“I think you do great work,” Barhorst said. “I’ve seen some of your work elsewhere, and I’ve certainly had the opportunity to look around today, talk with you, and I’m just impressed with what you’ve done with the building that I think originally made garage door openers.”
Ask Amy Home Furnishings serves customers from Dayton to Lima and from Grand Lake St. Marys to Indian Lake.
The business provides a wide range of services, helping some customers from the blueprint stage of planning a home and helping others renovate existing spaces. It can help select furniture, flooring, paint colors and more.
“It’s just that joy in their face, and they’re so excited, and they’re so happy to see their space,” Zumberger said. “And it gives me joy to know that when they come home that everything looks good. It brings them joy so that brings me joy.”
While the past year has been trying, the Ask Amy businesses actually saw growth in 2019 as the staging and commercial operations expanded and helped overcome the challenges the home furnishings division faced.
“It was actually a little shocking when I looked at the tail end of the numbers,” Zumberger said. “We grew last year.”
For more information about the Ask Amy businesses, visit https://askamyhomefurnishings.com/, http://www.askamystaging.com/, https://www.askamycommercialfurnishingsanddesign.com/ and www.facebook.com/askamyhomefurnishings/, call 937-658-6290 or visit the showroom at 230 E. Russell Road, Sidney.
Reach this writer at firstname.lastname@example.org or 937-538-4824.