While the well-known name of Sears adorns the sign atop her Luling business, Sears Hometown Store owner Kathy Witmer wants to make one thing clear: the “hometown store” part of that name is something she takes very seriously.
“I don’t work for Sears. I own this place and I work for you,” Witmer said to describe her customer-first attitude.
It’s not necessarily a well-known fact that Sears Hometown and Outlet stores are a separate entity from Sears Holdings, and that they are in fact independently-owned retailers.
“Sears Hometown gave me the opportunity to be a small business owner to a company that has become part of the local community,” said Witmer. “A large part of my job is interacting with and getting to know the needs of the community, and it’s been an incredibly rewarding experience. I have really enjoyed sponsoring high school sports and Promapalooza.”
The difference from the national franchise comes, Witmer says, in the added individual attention she and her staff can give customers and the way they can tailor their store to their local community.
“Sears Hometown offers a high level of customer service that reflects strong values and commitment to building ties within the community,” Witmer said. “Being an independent store, we’re able to customize our service to every community member who walks into the store.”
Given that it’s spring time, lawn and garden items have been among the hot sellers already, including lawnmowers, tractors and trimmers. A front-propelled Craftsman mower priced at just under $300 has been among the most sought after items. The store is also expanding its selection of Husqvarna tractors
There’s also expansion in the selection of freezers as well, an example of the store molding its inventory to meet community needs.
“There are a lot of hunters and fishermen out here,” Witmer noted. “So we naturally sell a lot of freezers.”
Sears Hometown is located at 12715 U.S. Suite 160B, Luling, and can be reached at (985) 308-1555.