We compared Home Depot stores in the city and in the suburbs — and it was clear which one was better

Business Insider/Jessica TylerBoth Home Depot stores we visited had the essentials, but one carried a lot more than the other.
  • Home Depot is one of the biggest stores for all things home improvement.
  • Home Depot reported in August that same-store sales were up 8% in its most recent fiscal quarter.
  • We compared shopping at Home Depot stores in the city and the suburbs, and it was clear which version was better.

Home Depot is one of the biggest stores for all things home improvement.

It stocks everything you might need to fix up your home, including kitchen and bath fixtures, screws and bolts, paint, and tools. It also offers services like do-it-yourself tips and online order pickup.

Home Depot reported in August that same-store sales were up 8% in its most recent fiscal quarter. It has 2,284 stores in North America.

The home-improvement giant also appears to be the store of choice for millennials. In a Bank of America survey of 1,000 millennials, reported by US News in May, 64% said Home Depot was their top choice for home-improvement shopping.

For city dwellers, it’s convenient to have a Home Depot nearby for tools, paint, and remodeling projects. But when we compared it to a massive suburban Home Depot, we found some major advantages in making the trek to one of the bigger stores.

Here’s how the two types of Home Depot stores compare:


First we went to a suburban Home Depot in Westchester, New York.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

In the parking lot was a big white tent where a rug sale was going on. Hundreds of rugs were for sale.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Outside of the store were seasonal plants and products like pumpkins and scarecrows.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Immediately in the entryway were order pickup lockers.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

In the front of the store was a small display advertising free carpet installation and design consultations.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Also towards the front of the store were barbecues …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… and Christmas trees and decor.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

The aisles in the store seemed to go on forever.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were a few aisles of paint …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… a huge garden department …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… and aisles of lumber stacked floor to ceiling.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There was a cutting center for the lumber as well.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were a lot of doors, mailboxes, porch lights, and other things that you’d need in a suburban home.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

In the center of the store were appliances …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… and products ranging from bathroom vanities to kitchen cabinets.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were a ton of model kitchens and bathrooms.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

A fairly large consultation center was in the middle of the store.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Home Depot has tons of samples of everything including flooring, carpets, and paint chips, making it easy to see how everything looks together.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Next to the warehouse was a greenhouse that was a continuation of the garden section, carrying all sorts of gardening tools, fire starters, fertilisers …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… plant food, lawn mowers, and more. It was almost as big as the store itself.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were a lot of registers by the exit, along with a self-checkout.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Also near the exit was a Pro Services desk that helps professionals to order materials ahead of time and save on purchases. There was also a tool-rental system.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

The suburban Home Depot definitely had a warehouse feel to it, but it had everything you might need for home and garden projects.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Next, I went to a Home Depot store in New York City. Because it was in the middle of the city, it didn’t have the entire outdoor section that the suburban Home Depot had.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

It didn’t have the same warehouse feel. Carpets were at the front of the store, but there didn’t seem to be a sale going on like at the suburban store. There was definitely a lot to choose from.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were also small household products at the front of the store, like smoke detectors, light bulbs, and fire extinguishers.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

It carried a lot of the same home furnishings as the other store did.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

It definitely felt more manageable to shop around, but the variety of what it carried was noticeably smaller.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

For example, it had a fraction of what the suburban store had in outdoor lighting, mailboxes, front doors, and other things that you’re more likely to buy for a house than an apartment.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

The aisles were a lot more narrow.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Upstairs were model kitchens and bathrooms …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… and appliances like washing machines and dishwashers.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

The design consultation center was also upstairs.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There was a sign advertising same-day delivery in Manhattan for $US21. I did not see a similar sign in the Westchester store, but Home Depot offers same-day delivery from most of its stores.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

Source: Home Depot


There was a garden section downstairs, though it was more focused on house plants suited for apartments rather than lawn and garden care.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were also Christmas trees and other seasonal decor downstairs.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were a few aisles of paint downstairs …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… and about a quarter of the floor was dedicated to tools.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There was a Pro Services desk at the city store …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… and an order pickup station. I did not see order pickup lockers in the store.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

There were just as many registers and self-checkout kiosks as at the bigger store.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

The stores both offered the same services, like same-day delivery, order pickup, and Pro Services perks.

Business Insider/Jessica Tylerr

While the store in NYC had a lot of essentials, like tools, paint, and everything you’d need to remodel your apartment …

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

… the suburban store had way more to offer. It had a greater variety across the board and carried products like lumber and gardening supplies that the NYC store was lacking. It was the clear winner of the two stores.

Business Insider/Jessica Tyler

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