The Sears Hometown located inside of Willowbrook Mall has started the closing process for their store a short six months after opening. The scheme was a way to put former Sears Mall buildings and a few former Kmarts to use as prospective tenants for this former mainline store, which closed in 2020, failed to step up. The closure was first reported to HHR by regular contributor Anonymous in Houston, who noticed a Google Review stating the store was closing. This rumor was confirmed by visiting the store and finding the yellow closing/clearance tags attached to all products. The closing does not come as a complete surprise for those following the blog, as the Sears Hometown Store in Plaza Paseo (Pasadena Town Square Mall) met a similar fate earlier this summer. This is a sad outcome for what could have been a quite successful concept. This Willowbrook location was supposedly acting as a distribution center for other stores and appliance deliveries. Meaning that Sears will need to secure another space for these activities if they have any intention to continue operations. At this point, the Willowbrook and Humble locations have been removed from the Sears Hometown website, while Sugar Land remains, indicating that at least that location will remain open for the time being.
While it’s sad that Sears is abandoning what could have been a viable concept, my deepest consolations go out to the employees. These were no doubt difficult stores to work in, dealing with customers who expected a mainline store or had issues with products these locations did not carry. While not able to answer every question, employees were always quite helpful to me and genuinely polite people. All the employees I spoke to were proud of their stores and had grand dreams for them. Good luck out there, folks!