CRAVE-WORTHY CLOSETS

by ALAENA HOSTETTER

Inspired Closets SWFL provides beautiful, exceptionally made custom closet organization for the everyman or “everywoman” (the majority of its clientele), according to owner H.L. Burkley, a former general contractor, who fell in love with closet organization after seeing it in a client’s home.

“There were drawers, shelves for shoes and a chandelier hanging down. It was just amazing,” says Burkley. That experience 16 years ago prompted him to launch his own custom closet organization business.

Over the last decade and a half, he’s serviced South Florida’s organizational needs for less cost than his competitors, positioning Inspired Closets SWFL as a more affordable alternative to other custom closet companies in the area.

“Our average closet costs the customer $1,450,” he says, as opposed to the competitors’ design jobs that can fetch a pricey five and six figures. “Everybody has closets, and believe it or not, everyone can afford closet organization with us.”

However, affordability doesn’t come at the cost of quality. When researching how to get into the business more than a decade ago, Burkley soon realized he wanted to only use Inspired Closets’ product for his new company, after learning more about how the products are made.

“We have machinery that no one in the country in our industry has. It’s custom-made for what we do; it’s just amazing,” he says. “Our manufacturer has invested so much money into the process and the material. It’s the best manufactured product you could possibly get.” This high-end equipment leads to greater precision in the product, among other benefits. The reason precision is so important is because “in a closet, everything is in your face, it’s not hidden behind a cabinet door like in a kitchen,” Burkley explains. “It’s really easy to notice material that isn’t fitting or finished quite right.”

Additionally, Inspired Closets’ manufacturing plant also has one of only four machines in the world (and the only one in the United States) that make the “high-definition laminate” doors, drawer fronts and trim that Inspired Closets sells. This version of laminate is extra durable against wear and tear, and stands up to the biggest stressor in Florida—the region’s heat and humidity.

“It’s good up to 195 degrees, while competitors’ products only withstand 135 degrees,” says Burkley. That means the product remains in tip-top shape over the decades, whether it’s used in an air-conditioned closet or a super steamy garage. “We’re giving that drawer front or shelving a better fighting chance,” he says.

In addition to providing a more wellmade product at an affordable price, Burkley set out to change the game in terms of customer service. “Inspired Closets did a lot of market research, interviewing our competitors’ clients, and realized the customer experience wasn’t that great,” he says. “They found that people got overwhelmed. They were afraid to make a mistake and got scared off. We want this to be an effortless process.”

To that end, Burkley offers a “love your closet guarantee.” Inspired Closets SWFL will keep coming back to a customer’s home to make adjustments, free of charge, until they are completely satisfied.

Inspired Closets SWFL’s exceptional customer service isn’t limited to customer satisfaction at the end of a job. It starts when a prospective client calls and is greeted by Inspired Closets SWFL’s incredibly friendly staff.

“From the first person you talk to, our team is amazing. We get so many compliments about Kathy, for one,” he says. “People do business with us because they like us as people.”

Burkley relates some recent customer feedback: “I didn’t think the job could get any better, but it did. The closets are stunningly beautiful. Your installer was fabulous. He’s so patient and gave me great advice.”

His recipe for happy customers is straightforward. “We show up on time and do exactly what we say we’re going to do, with no surprises or additional costs. People trust us because of that,” he says. “I saw an opportunity to do business better than anyone else in our industry, and we are.”

Alaena Hostetter is a content strategist, editor and journalist who writes about art, design, culture, music, entertainment and food.