SPECIAL TO OCALA STYLE
The commercials don’t lie. The moment you walk into Foxy Carpet One on Baseline Road, the store’s friendly pooch, Miss Shelby, does indeed greet you with a wagging tail.
The decision to start his own company was an easy one for owner Rob Carney.
“In 1978 I graduated from Purdue University and moved to Florida in 1981 to work for my uncle who had a floor covering business,” Rob says. “With the bad economy at the time, he decided to close the business. I had two choices — I could either stay in Florida and start my own company, or I could move back to Indiana. Well, I didn’t want to shovel snow, so that answered that question. My sophomore year at Purdue University, it was -86 degrees with the wind chill. I had had enough of weather like that.”
So in 1982, Rob became a one-man company, specializing in new construction sales.
“I would drive around and stop at the different construction sites,” Rob says. “That’s how I got my work in the beginning.”
Well, a lot has changed over the years. Today, there are more than 40 flooring retailers in Marion County, and Foxy Carpet One is the second oldest.
“I’ve seen many companies come in, and many go out,” Rob says. “The key to our success is that we treat people the way we would like them to treat us,” Rob says. “My employees are wonderful people. They are all incredibly cordial, knowledgeable, and helpful. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. They are the key to our success.”
Rob understands the importance of installation. Foxy Carpet One is the only store in Marion County to have earned the Five Diamond Installation Excellence Award, given to installers who have proven, through field tests, a rigorous exam, and customer surveys, that they have achieved excellence in their field. Installers must commit to a high level of quality to maintain the diamond qualification.
Foxy Carpet One is willing to travel great distances to please their customers.
“We’ve done homes in Daytona Beach, Cocoa Beach, and jobs in Gainesville,” Rob says. “One job that is special to me is when we installed wood and carpeting for one of baseball’s legends and the greatest hitter of all time — Ted Williams. It was an honor to meet and talk with him.”
Foxy Carpet One is named after Rob’s grandfather Chester “Foxy” Carney.
“My grandfather was a retired railroader,” Rob says. “He and I were really close. I was like his shadow growing up. Everyone loved my grandfather. After he passed away in 1982, I promised him and God that I would make the name Foxy a household name, and a good one at that. I think I’ve done that.”
Driving by Foxy Carpet One, looks can be deceiving. From the road, the showroom looks small and confined, but once inside, the space opens into a vast 5,200 square foot showroom.
“People always comment on how big the store is,” Rob says. “I know it doesn’t look it from the outside.”
Aside from the large display area, Rob also recently built an additional 4,000 square feet of storage space behind the building.
The showroom itself is beautifully decorated, with comfortable couches and oversized chairs. A fireplace, adorned with a marble casing, decorates one wall. On the mantel, a portrait of Foxy Carney is proudly displayed.
The staff at Foxy Carpet One doesn’t work on commission, so there are no high-pressure sales pitches, just helpful, friendly staff members who are eager to help.
“Everyone who walks through our door is treated with respect,” general manager Carol Bailey says. “No job is too small or too large. We certainly have something for everyone’s tastes and budget.”
While hardwood flooring is Foxy Carpet’s forté, they also offer an impressive selection of ceramic tile, marble, laminate products, vinyl, carpeting and area rugs. Do they ever have area rugs! The selection of over 400 rugs is mind boggling.
No matter what your needs are, Foxy Carpet One promises exceptional customer service, and top-of-the-line installation.
As a matter of fact, Rob is so satisfied by his mechanics who install the products, that he offers a lifetime warranty on installation.
“I make sure my mechanics prove to me that they produce the quality of work I expect of them,” Rob says. “I can ensure all of our customers will receive the best installation on the market today. Our mechanics are polite, prompt, and very experienced.”
Rob is proud to say that he always receives compliments about his staff’s professionalism.
“On a daily basis I hear about how much people appreciate our staff,” he says. “You don’t normally hear people respond favorably to service they receive. Often, people only comment if they had a bad experience. However, we get a very high percentage of positive feedback through letters and phone calls.”
Ann Taylor of Summerfield is one of those clients. She says she wouldn’t hesitate for a second to recommend Foxy Carpet One to her family and friends.
“The people at Foxy Carpet One were more than accommodating,” she says. “They arrived right on time and got right to work. Before they left, they even moved everything back to its original place and vacuumed. Now that we didn’t expect! From the greeter at the door [Miss Shelby], to the salesman and the installers, Foxy Carpet One offers a quality product and I thank them for that.”
Rob laughs that Ann mentioned Miss Shelby, and commented that the customers seem to love her.
“She’s such a good dog,” Rob says with a smile. “She’s very well-trained and friendly. When the bells ring, she leaves her comfortable bed under my desk is on her way to greet the clients. I do most of the measurements for flooring myself, and I get many requests to bring Shelby along with me.”
Rob jokes that when he’s exercising at Jervey Gantt, people sometimes stop him and say “Aren’t you the guy with Miss Shelby?” Rob doesn’t mind though. After all, it’s proof that advertising works.
“I’ve been blessed to be able to meet and become friends with many of my clients,” Rob says. “I thank everyone who has supported Foxy Carpet One. It’s been a great journey so far.”
Foxy Carpet One
2615 Southeast 58th Avenue
Ocala, Florida 34471
SPECIAL TO OCALA STYLE