Steve and Mitzie Pikert opened an appliance repair and sales shop next to their home in Murrayville in the late 1970s, not long after getting married. They christened the shop “Steve’s Appliances” and Mitzie took on customer service, while Steve handled on sales and repairs. The couple established their business on “old fashioned family values” and focused on personalized customer service.
Steve drove a school bus for ten years while the family built their business. He would wake up early in the morning to complete his route, before coming into the shop. He relied on his work experience in the plumbing and heating business, as well as his trade school training in heating, air, and refrigeration, to offer customer repairs and refurbished used appliances. Building a business took time, but the Pikert’s customer service grew steadily, primarily through word of mouth referrals.
The Pikerts forgoed a fancy showroom and the accompanying high overhead costs in exchange for low overhead and competitive prices. Steve’s Appliances built a relationship with Frigidaire, offering new, American-made appliances they could present to customers with confidence. They also offered free estimates, delivery, and hauling services; a practice that continues today.
Steve established a heating and air conditioning service with a strong customer focus. When a customer purchases a unit from Steve’s Appliances, they can expect the best warranty on the market, including service calls at no charge through the life of the warranty. Additionally, Steve’s repairman are qualified to work on a variety of units, including ones sold by competitors. Customers can depend on Steve’s to offer a fair price for any repairs and to only be charged for a service call if the serviceman can make the required repair.
When the business began to succeed beyond the limits of the Murrayville location, Steve’s relocated to downtown Jacksonville. Their larger showroom allowed the business to increase their appliance selection, including washers, dryers, stoves, and refrigerators. Steve’s also expanded their used appliance showroom, repairing any issues and offering quality, affordable refurbished options to the community. These used appliances have become especially important as the cost of new appliances have grown steadily over the years.
Steve and his repair crew are constantly keeping on top of new innovations, changes, and technology associated with appliances. Some changes are positive, while others mean lower warranty and an increased price on parts. As they repair a variety of appliances of makes and models, it is important for them to adapt with industry changes to provide the best service. Appliance repairs are “an adventure,” Steve says. “You can find something new every day.”
In order to provide prompt and efficient service, Steve’s Appliances maintains a large selection of parts. This includes “just about any part you can think of” in the majority of brands. Steve works to purchase parts in generous quantities on sale so he can pass the savings onto his customers. As many manufacturer’s parts are only guaranteed for 90 days, Steve can also offer customers quality, alternative brand parts with one year warranties.
Steve is proud to own a local, family-run business that has remained true to their motto of “old fashioned family values” for more than 35 years. Mitzie continues to work at the shop, along with two of the couple’s nephews, and one niece. Steve appreciates working with trusted family members, training them personally, and knowing they “will makes sure things are done right.”