In 1957, Eric Ross’ grandfather built a secondhand furniture store in San Clemente. Today, that building stands next to two more that have been added to the storefront over the years. Eric and his wife, Sophia, took over the family business in 2018. Keep an eye on the store’s Instagram for updates on an anniversary event.
How did SC Furniture and Mattress start?
Eric: My grandfather (Richard Ross Sr.) started out selling salvaged building supplies in the yard area and secondhand furniture items in the store. My dad took over in the mid-’70s, and he ran it for almost 30 years. He acquired the building next door and started selling new furniture. My grandmother had a mattress store in San Clemente. They bought the other building next to (our store) in the early ’80s, which is where we sell mattresses. We’ve been the longest-running mattress store in the area.
What do you remember from being at the store when you were a kid?
Eric: I was born in 1978, and I was down here from day one. I ran around here as a kid building stuff and cleaning and just learning the business from watching my parents run it. I worked for my dad all through high school; then when he retired, my uncle took over and I continued to learn through him. It just evolved from there.
Tell us about the items you carry.
Eric: The main building, which is in the middle, is our new-furniture section that has sofas and furniture for your living room, dining room, and home office. The two-story building is all new mattresses and bedroom furniture. We have a whole building full of secondhand items, and we also do a lot of patio furniture. We’re always looking for unique and fun items to put outdoors.
Where do you find your secondhand items?
Eric: I’m always scouting for deals at estate sales and auctions. Lately, we’ve been taking pieces in on trade. If a customer comes in and wants to buy a new couch and get rid of their old one, I’ll offer them a discount on the new one if we can take in the old one. We’ll deliver the new item and pick up and resell the old one.
Sophia: A lot of times, people who are needing to clean out their home are in a position where they’ll have to pay to have pieces taken away. But if we’re interested, we’ll just take it for free so it’s a win-win.
What sets you apart from bigger stores?
Eric: We’re mostly all family here—my brother works here, my cousin works here. We’ve grown up with our sales ladies and have known each other for more than 40 years.
Sophia: Not only do we deliver, install, and set up, but we’ll help people find products for a space and create a mood board. I think a lot of people resonate with the presence of a third-generation San Clemente (family business).