NEW BERN, Craven County - Disappointing news for bargain shoppers in New Bern as the Trade It! store has closed permanently.
Bargain hunters who would come to the store to find deals were surprised to find the doors to the store closed with not much explanations from the corporate office.
The company decided to shut down the New Bern store, which opened in August 2011, but only informed their workers on Monday. NewsChannel 12 went to the store, located at 3460 M.L.K Boulevard, to find out about the situation but we weren't allowed inside the store. However when we looked in from the outside, we could see that the shelves were empty and some had been broken down.
Employees inside the store, taped up boxes and secured merchandise to get them ready to be moved out. Costumers who hoped to cash in on their used items or who were paying for items with the lay-away program said they received a text informing them of the change.
Signs posted on the store's front told customers they had till close of business Wednesday to have payments completed, their items picked up or get a full refund, otherwise they would have to go to the Greenville branch. That branch is located on Greenville Boulevard.
Some costumers who tried to inquire about returning items were turned away. One costumer we spoke to said he hurried down as quickly as he could because he was not enthusiastic about driving that far.
"Going up there depends on what I need and the prices. I love to compare prices here and what they sell it for," said retiree Julius Banks, who usually frequented the store before going to other retailers.
A representative on site who would not speak gave us a statement she said was from Trade It's corporate office.
"Unfortunately due to under performance, Trade It! has decided to pull out of New Bern market for now," the statement read. It urged customers to visit any of their seven locations in the state.
The nearest to New Bern are located in Greenville and Goldsboro. All merchandise from the New Bern store, including those items on layaway, were scheduled to be transferred to the Greenville store where customers could continue their layaway payments and bargain shopping.