February 26, 2019
9 years ago Hammer Hardware Devonport sold to new owners and at the time a certain Matt and Carly Senior after hearing about the sale thought, ‘We could do that.’ And so, proving the idiom ‘good things take time’ to be a truth, they seized the opportunity when it arose in July of last year.
Having a Hammer Hardware, as almost every local will know, is an absolute blessing in a place like Devonport, where replacement parts, gardening tools, nuts, bolts, father’s-day-gifts, and buckets and spades are items we just don’t want to travel far for. To be able to quickly grab any number of do-it-yourself items, with quality guidance and friendly service, is just not something a community ever wants to lose.
So who are the new owners of Devonport Hammer Hardware? Both Matt & Carly grew up on the Shore and have lived in Devonport together for over 19 years where they have raised their 3 children. Matt, with years behind him in the building and joinery industry and Carly with years of experience in admin and accounts, make a formidable force in their new venture.
We ask Carly a few questions to see how they’re getting on with their new baby.
What do you love most about your new business? It is a lovely local community hub and the staff are so knowledgeable and helpful we really feel very lucky.
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome in the initial months? It was a pretty steep learning curve in the beginning since we are both new to retail, and the fact that it is only shut a few days of the year means that juggling work and our children (18, 11 and 9) has been quite a challenge. But as we have got a handle on things it has got easier and we feel very grateful that we get to live and work in this lovely area.
What’s been the most rewarding part of the business and what has taken you by surprise? Definitely the customers are the most rewarding. The shop is more than a shop, it has its own little community. We get the loveliest people coming in to just stop and chat and we think this is a reflection on the relationships our staff have built. All these people are our neighbours, our neighbours neighbours, parents at school, neighbour businesses. People like to just pop in, pick something up and have a laugh.
I think that most Devonport residents are great at supporting local businesses, it is actually something I hear all the time and we certainly like to do the same. I think that is why Devonport is so unique in that we really do have everything we need down here and the less you have to use Lake Road the better really!
The surprising thing for us has been just how much goes into keeping the place running, it was something we didn’t really realise before just how much it takes to keep the shelves stocked of the right amount of the exact things that people want, there is a lot more going on in the background than people realise. Until we were in it, we didn’t know it.
What changes have you made? We have a few little changes here and there to the layout of the shop and we have had a few clear outs behind the scenes but it already is such a great business and we don’t think we need to reinvent the wheel here, it runs well as it is. We do plan to do a bit of a freshen up later in the year, some new signage and canopy outside and a bit of a paint.
Do you think kiwis are still no8 wire inspired do-it-yerselvers? Or has there been a change? Oh yes I think kiwi’s still like a bit of DIY for sure. I don’t think you need to be an expert to come and get some supplies and advice from your local hardware store and have a go.