About the Group Buyer Program
French Country Furniture Source (FCFS) will arrange container purchases for a group of individuals almost anywhere in the world, as long as the container will be delivered to one location and unloaded within 3-5 days of the delivery of the container to the single location specified by the buyer(s). Savings are in the 60%-70% off the retail prices for these bulk purchases.
Note: Customers are buying what is shipped in the container, not the container, itself. The container is owned by the shipping company and the customers will return the container to the shipping company after unloading, say within 3-5 days after receipt of the container. This is relatively simple and FCFS will assist you this.
Example: Say four people from Chicago get together and order a 40 foot container of multiple items for their homes, to be split up to each customer when the container arrives in Chicago. FCFS will work with the customers and let them know what will fit in the container. If the order is too large for one container, either a second container order will be arranged or some items will have to be deleted from the order, to be agreed upon by the customers. More on this further down.
SHIPMENT FROM MANUFACTURER TO CUSTOMERS: FCFS will arrange shipping from the manufacturing facilities to the final “container unloading” destination. In other words, we will have your container shipped from, say Indonesia or China, to your designated local delivery point, say your warehouse or parking lot. Customers will arrange transportation from the container unloading point to their place of choosing for their respective orders.
For example, the customers may choose a warehouse, home, or even a parking lot to unload their container. After the container is unloaded, the customers will then take possession and arrange personal delivery of their items any way they deem fit. Suggestion: have one furniture delivery company deliver all the furniture for best pricing.
CUSTOMER CONTACT PERSON: A Customer Contact Person (CCP) will be chosen by the customers and agreed upon to be the contact person to communicate with FCFS. While FCFS is happy to discuss the items and lines individually with customers, only one customer can have final responsibility for shipping times, payments, shipping destinations, changing part of the order, if possible, and authority at the unloading to ensure all customers receive everything they ordered.
Note: Each item will have the customer’s name on the item label to make this easier during unloading and checking to make sure all items were received and distributed correctly to all customers.
PAYMENTS: A 50% deposit is required on all orders, with the balance of 50% to be paid with receipt of shipping documents confirming the container is ready to be shipped. This will be done through a bank wire. We are looking into the possibility of using PayPal, as well.
Shipping Company and Customs: FCFS will use a shipping specialist to:
• Arrange for the shipping container with the carrier line.
• Arrange for truck transport of the container from the manufacturer to the port for loading on the ship.
• Seek the best local handling rates and companies for these services.
• Seek the best shipping rates for the container.
• Seek the fastest shipping times.
• FCFS will arrange customs clearing brokers to clear customs at the destination entry point of any particular country. FCFS may, at its option, use a separate customs broker to arrange customs clearance and payment of custom fees and taxes.
• Arrange for port clearance.
• Arrange for shipment of the container to the customers specified delivery address.
• Arrange for container pick-up and return to port.
Estimated costs for these will vary depending on a number of factors, including local fees and taxes and duties.
Shipping and Container Expense: The shipping company provides the shipping container and the vessel to get the container from, say Jakarta, Indonesia to, say Los Angeles, California. Or, say China to London.
Estimated costs: $2500 – $4000, depending on cities involved and the time of year. Carriers have traditionally raised the shipping rates during the last quarter of the year. Why? Increased traffic, increased demand, and because they can. It’s that simple.