Fueled by sibling bond, Dubuque liquidation business moves to larger site

Triple J Liquidation

ADDRESS: 2549 Kerper Blvd.

OFFERINGS: Sells tools, furniture, clothing and more at reduced prices

HOURS: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday

ONLINE: Triple J Liquidation on Facebook

EMAIL: triplejinvestments3@gmail.com

A Dubuque liquidation business owned by a trio of siblings has relocated to a significantly larger facility, a move that the owners hope will take the operation to the next level.

Triple J Liquidation on Friday opened its doors at 2459 Kerper Blvd., occupying a space that formerly housed Matthews Distributing. The business was launched by Josh, Jenna and Jace Manders in late 2019 and previously operated out of an old Holy Ghost school building at 2901 Central Ave.

Jenna Manders said the Kerper Boulevard facility offers 7,000 more square feet of retail space than the previous location. It also includes office space and a dock area for taking in product shipments.

Jenna said the move will mark a turning point in another way: After offering sporadic hours at its previous home, the business will begin to offer consistent, weekly operating hours.

“Our customer base has been growing organically since we opened,” Jenna said. “I think this move will allow that to happen even more.”

Triple J Liquidation sells a wide variety of products generally found at home improvement retailers such as Home Depot or Lowe’s, including tools, lighting and furniture. More recently, the company has sold some clothing, too.

But the business doesn’t operate like a typical retailer.

Instead, Triple J Liquidation purchases a wide variety of items that retail companies no longer want.

“These companies may have overstock or extra stuff they are trying to get rid of,” Josh said. “Sometimes, we get customer returns or discontinued items. Sometimes, a company will reach out to us when they are getting ready to close.”

In other cases, Triple J will acquire items via auctions.

Triple J Liquidation purchases these items at relatively low prices and passes those savings along to its own customers. Josh said most items are priced at about 65% of what they would have cost in a retail store.

The company purchased former Holy Ghost school and convent buildings at 2887 and 2901 Central in 2020. While Triple J occupied that former school building — which is a different structure than the most recent site of Holy Ghost Elementary School, which is at 2981 Central and now is Holy Ghost Early Childhood Center — the family transformed the convent area into 10 apartment units, Jenna explained.

She said the growth of Triple J, and plans to renovate the school portion of Holy Ghost, inspired the recent move.

During its short time in business, many regular customers have become familiar with the atmosphere at Triple J. Jenna believes this vibe is defined by family.

“Most of the time, one of our parents, if not both of them, are there at the store. Our grandparents and aunts often stop by,” she said. “We are very family-oriented.”

Jace, the youngest of the siblings, believes that the family dynamic — and specifically the sibling rapport — has helped shape the growing business.

“There are a lot of times we disagree,” he said. “But it always seems to work out well. We’re able to talk through things together, and we’re all pretty level-headed.”