I live fairly close to this Laurel District store and visit it often as there is no hardware store in my own neighborhood, the Dimond. There are three factors that keep me coming back besides the proximity:
1. Good keys: you might find that surprising, but I am a Realtor and that means lots of keys need to be copied. Sometimes the owner has only one set of originals and they need to be returned. I need one set for the Realtor lockbox, if we are using one, and a spare set for those rare instances when the lockbox malfunction or a colleague loses one. I usually come back here for my keys, even it it's a little out of the way because they work, every time. My experience with others is hit and miss. The proprietor explained to me that the difference with his service is that he keeps the key machine well calibrated and in top working order.
2. Good advice: this is one of those treasured places where you can get some good coaching on that do-it-yourself project that might cost you a lot more than you expect if you don't start with the right tools and materials.
3. Parking: their parking lot provides a incentive to using the store. It's crowded on weekends, but most people are in and out quickly.