Since there is a lot of confusion about the new stay at home order, and we are getting a lot of the same questions, I will attempt to answer common covid questions in this week’s post. I have read the 32 page document the Ontario government released on January 12th, as well as the four page list of exemptions to the stay at home order. And the new restrictions don’t change anything in regards to how The Barn is currently conducting business.
We are being extremely cautious and that will not change. We work from home as much as possible. We work in the store on alternate days, so that there is only one person in the store the vast majority of the time. We are taking precautions that are stricter than the government regulations require.
We are open for curbside pickup and delivery only, instore shopping is not allowed. I’m sure many readers will find this hard to believe, but we are still getting requests from customers who want to come into the store to shop. In store shopping will not be allowed until the lockdown has ended.
We are also getting many requests to bring items outside so that customers can have a look at them. This is not allowed. If you cannot purchase an item from a photo, that is understandable. But, to see items in person before purchasing them you will have to wait until we reopen for instore shopping.
There are many photos on our website, if you see something you are interested in and would like further information, please just send us an email. We are working from home as much as possible and are not keeping regular store hours. So we won’t always be available to answer the phone during lockdown. But we do respond to all email inquiries.
We are getting a lot of requests similar to this: “I’m looking for a desk, can you send me photos of what you have?” We do not take photos of most of our inventory, it is too large and changes too rapidly. When requesting photos please be specific. Tell us what you are looking for, as well as the style you want, and the approximate dimensions you would like. We will then send you photos of the best available option[s] we have in stock that fits your requirements.
If you would like to purchase an item, just send us your phone number and we will call you back to arrange a pickup or delivery time, and payment by credit card. While in lockdown we cannot accept cash or debit. We also cannot accept returns on purchases made during lockdown.
CURBSIDE PICKUP & DELIVERY
For safety reason, here is how we are doing curbside pickup and delivery. We will not take your item[s] into your home upon delivery. We send just one person who will leave your delivery outside or in an open garage. We will arrange a short delivery window in advance. Then we will call you upon arrival so that you know exactly when your item[s] arrive.
For curbside pickup we also make sure that there is no contact. An appointment time must be made in advance. When you arrive we ask that you call us and remain in your vehicle. Someone will bring your purchase outside and leave it for you to pickup. That way there is no contact.
FYI- Number 8 in the list of exceptions to the stay at home order published by the Ontario government states: “Purchasing or picking up goods through an alternative method of sale, such as curbside pickup, from a business or place that is permitted to provide curbside pickup under Stage 1 Order.”
We have stopped buying antiques from the public since the lockdown started for safety reasons. We are still getting contacted nearly everyday from people wanting to sell antique items. We will resume buying after the lockdown has ended. If you have items you want to sell we ask that you please hold off on your inquiries until the lockdown has ended.
Many people have asked the question. “Can I send you photos to see if you are interested in my items for after you resume buying?” The answer is yes, you can send photos and we will let you know if they are the type of items we purchase.
Even after the lockdown has ended, we will not go into your home to look at items, for safety reason. You will have to bring items to us, where we will look at them outside. Or if you have a large number of larger items and you can put them in an open garage we may be willing to come and have a look, depending on the items of course.
Normally anyone can just bring items for us to have a look at without an appointment. After the lockdown has ended we don’t want everyone showing up with their items at once. An appointment will be required to sell your items after the lockdown.
FILM & TELEVISON
The film & television industry shut down completely in March during the first lockdown. They did not get up and running again until months after the first lockdown was lifted. First they had to figure out strict safety protocols that would keep everyone safe. And there are a lot of moving parts with getting a production up and running again, so it took a long time.
Productions have not shutdown during this lockdown, the government of Ontario is allowing them to continue operating with very strict safety protocols. Any company that supplies the film industry is being allowed to operated to continue supplying them with the things they need to operate. And they need furniture and props to operate. So we have been allowed to continue supplying productions. Set decoration buyers make an appointment in advance and one person comes at a time to take photos and pick out items. Set decoration buyers like everyone who works on film sets in Ontario, are tested for covid every two days.
We have been very surprised by the amount of business we have had from loyal customers purchasing items from photos during the lockdown. We would like to thank everyone for their support. We are all doing the best we can in this situation. We understand your frustration and we thank you for your patience.