By Deborah Bostock-Kelley

When the pandemic first began in March 2020 and businesses were shuttered, Budget Blinds Central  Tampa, Tarpon Springs, and Dunedin owner Rob Emmerson’s busy phone stopped ringing. He decided if the global pandemic would close the company he’d acquired in 2019, he’d go out fighting, helping local charities with each sale

Rob Emmerson

By April 1, 2020, Rob’s phone was nonstop ringing. Bored, socially isolated people stuck in their homes discovered their window treatments desperately needed makeovers. Through sales, Rob has donated $100,000 to local charities, including $10,000 to One Tree Planted, which the donations helped reforest so much that they no longer need to plant in Little Big Econ State Forest. 

From draperies to blinds to privacy or sun shades, the options are limited only by your design preference. In 2022, practicality is winning over patterned window treatments. A solid color or faux wood tone will last as patterns go out of style year-round. Grey remains the most popular color while bringing the outside in, and minimalism is also trending.

While Budget Blinds does have a storefront, they offer free, no-obligation ‘store-to-door’ service. You never leave the comfort of your home. Designers will bring the store to you with samples to see in your home’s lighting. A consultation lasts 1-2 hours, with the consultant measuring and providing a quotation on-site. 

“We come to your house, help select the product you want, and take care of the installation. All installers are employees of Budget Blinds and have passed full background checks, and are insured. Once installation is complete, they even take away the old blinds. No hauling old, dirty blinds and outdated window treatments to the curb yourself. Budget Blinds takes care of all of that for you.”

With Budget Blinds being the largest in the industry, each product carries a five-year NO QUESTIONS ASKED  warranty and offers a lifetime warranty. Whether your toddler yanked the blind from its frame or your new puppy used it as a chew toy, the ‘no questions asked’ security is unmatched in the industry. If within five years, Budget Blinds will replace without cost. In addition, you still get the lifetime manufacturer’s warranty.

“No matter what happens to your window treatments in the first five years, we replace them. It’s an abuse warranty that doesn’t cost you anything,” he said. “One of my favorite things is when a customer calls me up three or four years after they bought their window treatment and they say, ‘hey, my kid broke my blinds, I guess I need to buy a replacement,’ and I say, I’m happy to sell you new blinds, or I can replace them for free.”

Rob relayed a recent story. 

“A lady in Town and Country calls me up. She had some new windows, and the window guys damaged her window treatment. She called another company out, but they said it couldn’t be repaired. She’d need to buy a new one. Thankfully she calls the Budget Blinds she had purchased from. They told her we don’t cover that territory anymore. Call Rob,” he said. “I went out and met with her that weekend. I said I think this is covered by a lifetime no questions asked warranty. Let me check the label.” 

The woman had wanted to switch out the color, but the warranty covered exact replacement unless the product expired.

Rob called the manufacturer on Monday, then called the woman.

“I have good news and bad news. You are covered, but the fabric was discontinued last month, so I can’t give you the same fabric, so we have to pick out new. She was thrilled. I went out to her, and she picked the color she wanted. We put them in for her, and she bought three or four more window treatments for rooms she hadn’t done yet.” 

Today, technology-driven homes are changing the way homes are being designed.

“Alexa, open my blinds.”

Even your blinds, drapes, and shutters can be voice-commanded. 

Using the smart motor technology of Budget Blinds, you no longer need to pull strings or cords. Too many children have been injured or lost their lives, so today’s blinds are made with child safety in mind. 

A benefit of intelligent motor technology is security. If a burglar alarm is triggered, it can work with your alarm service. Besides using Alexa to turn on all the lights, you can program the If This Then That app to open the blinds in the entire home. 

“I figured nobody wants to be in a fishbowl if they’re breaking into your house.”

Rob spoke firsthand of the convenience and the energy savings as he uses the smart technology in his home. While a remote is provided and an app is available, nothing other than your voice is necessary with today’s smart home. Blinds can be programmed to open later on the weekends or raise and lower at particular times of the day. 

“The convenience of being able to interact with your home is so nice. I have automated blinds programmed for sunset and sunrise. The app tells the blinds if it is a sunny day in Tampa, close the blinds on the south side of my house. The room stays about 10 degrees cooler than it was. I don’t have to worry about daylight savings time or where’s my remote control.” 

When the automated technology first debuted, the rate was prohibitive. While adding this innovation to window treatments does add to the cost, today, the price is reasonable. 

Budget Blinds sells more custom window treatments than even Home Depot and Lowes.

“We are the number one retailer of custom window treatments in the world.”

Call 727-943-8521 today to set your no-obligation in-home consultation appointment. Visit their website at http://www.budgetblinds.com/tarponsprings. Find them on Facebook at Budget Blinds of Tarpon and Dunedin.