I was talking with a guy who is an independent (not big conglomerate) owner of a watch repair/sales shop in our local mall. I’ve gone there for years not just because of the reasonable pricing, but he’s reliable, friendly and he’s been there for 17 years.

Not only do I find out that they just raised his rent there from $6000 (yes, thousand) per month to $8000 per month, starting very soon, but they REQUIRE him to be open (along with the other stores in the mall) on Thanksgiving night! When I say ‘REQUIRE’, I mean that they will actually charge/fine him if he does NOT open. The latest that night he can open up is 12 am. Like he says, who’s going to buy watches or want repairs on Thanksgiving night?

And this isn’t a really big location to start with.

He also said that there were several smash and grabs last year. Yes, the crowds are big, but that makes it all that much easier for thieves to disappear in the crowds and get away.

He can move to another location, further back in the mall, but that will also take upwards of $20,000 including new installations of credit card machines, all his shelves, security and so forth. And that doesn’t even address any new furniture/display cases that might get broken when moving from their location after 17 years.

It’s hard enough for a guy to make a dollar with his own business, and not only does a mall ‘stick’ him with a ridiculous rent amount, but ‘REQUIRES’ him to be open Thanksgiving night so he will be away from his family!

But the sheep come out in droves in an effort to find a big sale. Holidays used to mean family. For years now, it’s about the almighty dollar. It’s very sad.

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