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7 Insider Tips for Hiring a Floor Installer

Need Help Finding Someone To Install Your Floors? Don't Miss These Tips!

1. Ask Around: Word-of-Mouth is Golden!

Chances are, someone you know has recently had their floors transformed. Tap into your network of friends, family, coworkers, and even neighbors (just don't become that intrusive neighbor!). Ask if they were happy with their installer and, if so, get a referral.

Did you know? Anyone can install our floors, as long as they have the right tools and can follow our easy-to-understand instructions. However, a professional installer brings experience and expertise, ensuring a flawless finish that will stand the test of time (and dance parties!).

Yelp is also a great resource for finding highly-rated installers with glowing reviews. Look for those with at least 3-5 reviews to get a good sense of their work and customer satisfaction.

PRO TIP: contractors appreciate word-of-mouth referrals and some may even offer a "neighborhood" discount!

2. Get Multiple Estimates: It Pays to Shop Around!

Most installers offer free phone estimates or charge a small fee for in-home consultations. Don't be afraid to get at least 3 estimates from different companies. This allows you to compare pricing, experience, and overall "feels" to find the best fit for your project. Remember, ask plenty of questions, such as:

    1. Do you have experience installing flooring? (in case it is a carpenter or handyman rather than a full-time floor installer)
    2. Are you licensed and insured?
    3. What is your base charge per sq ft?
    4. How much do you charge to take up and discard existing flooring?
    5. How much do you charge to install trim & moldings?
    6. If my subfloor is not level, how much do you charge to level it?
    7. Do you charge to receive the flooring, bring it inside, and cut open the boxes for acclimation?
    8. Do you require a deposit upfront, and if so, what is the payment schedule?
    9. Will you inspect the flooring materials I provide before installation?
    10. What else is included in your services?

3. Pay a Fair Wage: Respect Goes a Long Way!

While comparing prices is important, remember, you often get what you pay for. The vast majority of floor installers are honest, hard-working individuals who deserve fair compensation. If they go above and beyond, a tip at the end of the project is always appreciated!

4. Ask About the Warranty: Peace of Mind is Priceless!

The best installers stand behind their work. Look for a company that offers a warranty on their workmanship. This gives you peace of mind knowing that any issues arising from their installation (not related to normal wear and tear) will be addressed.

5. Do Your Own Research: Knowledge is Power!

Beware of contractors who disparage certain products and try to up-sell you on others. While they might have valid reasons for their opinion, it's important to do your research. Check online reviews and brand websites to get a complete picture of different products and avoid making decisions based solely on one person's perspective.

Often, when a contractor speaks poorly of a product category, it's most likely because they had a bad experience with a low quality brand, but other times it's to persuade you to purchase flooring directly from them - which earns them an extra commission from their product vendor. The best way to review a product or brand is to research the specific brand online.

6. Planning is Key: Avoid Last-Minute Scrambles!

Most installers have a backlog of projects, so the earlier you start getting estimates, the better. Remember, it taskes time to order and receive the flooring - expect several days to a week if the flooring is shipped, or until pickup. Then there is an acclimation period which can be 2-10 days depending on where you live. Factor all these elements into your planning to avoid any delays in your flooring project.

7. Still Having Trouble Finding an Installer? The NWFA is Here to Help!

If you're struggling to find a qualified installer, check out the National Wood Flooring Association's certified installer website. NWFA certification ensures that installers meet rigorous standards of experience and knowledge. You can find NWFA-Certified Installers here.

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