A Ballou Park business is making a comeback after an April fire damaged its previous location and forced the rental company to move.
“We’re trying to get them back together,” Shanna Luck, store manager at ColorTyme, said during an interview at the business Monday morning.
The rental business offers appliances, furniture and other household items. Although the owner had to relocate the company, ColorTyme and its employees didn’t have to move far.
Formerly located at 627 W. Main St. in the Ballou Park Mall near Roses, ColorTyme is just a few doors down at 657 W. Main St. in the shopping center in a more visible place.
As well as being easier to find, the store also has more space – despite being smaller than ColorTyme’s previous address. The business lost the storage room and about 1,000 square feet overall, but gained more space to display beds, couches, lamps, televisions, washers, dryers and other products.
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“We actually have more [items] out here than what we had before,” Luck said, adding that the store has sold a lot of products over the past two weeks.
The rental-owned store is also building its own number of customer accounts, she said. ColorTyme had nearly 600 accounts for rental customers before the fire, but that number dropped to 547 after the incident, Luck said. Now it’s back to 581.
Plans for the new location include adding storage and office space, a new coat of paint inside and new carpeting, she said.
“We still have a lot of work to do,” Luck said, adding that she didn’t know what will become of the former ColorTyme location.
The April 1 fire, which turned out to be arson, caused the most damage to Roses, but three other businesses — Dollar General, ColorTyme and Charms — also suffered smoke, heat and water damage.
Charms has since moved to Piney Forest Road and Dollar General and Roses have not reopened, Luck said.
A juvenile set Roses on fire while his or her mother was shopping, Danville Assistant Fire Marshal Richie Guill said in April. The juvenile then reported to officers that they smelled smoke, and was then taken into custody.
ColorTyme has been owned by Jeffrey Tepper for 22 years.
The store had six employees just before the fire, but now has four. The business is looking to hire a full-time sales manager and a part-time delivery driver, Luck said.
One of the employees who has stuck around said he wanted to keep working and help move the store forward.
“I needed a job and I was just ready to see ColorTyme grow,” said Chris Dillard, 33, who handles customer accounts for the business.
He calls customers who are behind on their payments and also helps with sales and deliveries.
“It’s easy and I like dealing with people,” Dillard said.
Immediately following the fire just over three months ago, ColorTyme wasted no time getting back into business. Luck spent the week after the fire working out of Tepper’s home, and Dillard knocked on customers’ doors. Fati said she wanted to avoid unemployment withdrawals.
The business has been in its new location since a week after the fire. The owner pulled inventory from another store location in Lynchburg for the Danville store, Luck said.
Fate wants to know that ColorTyme is back in business.
“To this day, a lot of people still don’t know we’re open,” Luck said.
ColorTyme has gotten help from its sister store, Rent-A-Center on Riverside Drive.
“If they don’t have something, they send customers to ColorTyme,” Luck said.
ColorTyme is open 9am to 7pm Monday to Friday, 8am to 5pm on Saturdays and closed on Sundays.