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Local News

Barrington family moves DirectBuy biz closer to home

LAKE ZURICH – DirectBuy of Northern Illinois will relocate from its current Gurnee location to Lake Zurich this month.

Franchise owner Dave Kushner will close his Gurnee showroom on Saturday and open for business at 739 W. Main St. (Route 22) in Lake Zurich on May 16.

“I’m moving it to a more centrally-located area so I can better serve customers in the Northern Illinois area,” Kushner said.

Membership-based DirectBuy connects its members directly to manufacturers and authorized suppliers for items from furniture to faucets, flooring to windows, cabinetry and more.

Kushner has been in the business for 25 years. He started as a sales trainee with DirectBuy in 1989 and by 1998, he was the franchise owner of a location in Hoffman Estates. When that location was closed to open a location in Gurnee, Kushner franchised that location in 2011. At the time, he had an understanding that when the Gurnee lease was up, Kushner would open a new location somewhere between Hoffman Estates and Gurnee.

Working with The Fidelity Group, Kushner found his new location in Lake Zurich, located near the intersection of U.S. Route 12 and Illinois Route 22, in the Village Square Shopping Center between Trader Joe’s and Petco.

As a young 20-something selling furniture, Kushner became familiar with the practice of retail markup, he said. He came across an ad for DirectBuy and wanted to learn more.

“I was blown away by the concept of being able to help people, teach people and help them save money,” Kushner said.

Kushner said a DirectBuy membership is most ideal for someone looking to furnish an entire home or doing remodel projects. Because membership costs and terms vary, Kushner said he is honest with those inquiring if he does not think they will benefit from DirectBuy membership.

“The average retailer typically marks up the price up to 50 percent or sometimes more,” Kushner said, adding since DirectBuy members get items directly from manufacturers and dealers, they avoid that markup.

As an example, Kushner said a kitchen remodel that might cost $10,000 at retail, might cost $6,000 to $7,000 with DirectBuy. He said furniture through DirectBuy is up to 50 percent off retail sale prices.

The Barrington-area resident was pleased to find a location so close to home, especially since DirectBuy of Northern Illinois is a family affair for him.

Kushner even met his wife, Michele, who owns the location with her husband, through DirectBuy. The couple have six children: Justin, 31; Sierra, 29; Katie, 19; Kassie, 17; Kellie, 16; and David, 13. Katie, Kassie and Kellie will all work at DirectBuy on their school breaks. David will also begin learning the business.

DirectBuy of Northern Illinois has about 15 employees and once settled in the new location, Kushner will begin his search for a sales trainee.

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