Buy the Right Floor
Its not as complex as you may think! Flooring is the heart and soul of a room, setting the character and creating a statement about its owner. That said, the process of purchasing a floor should not be forced or artificial. Mixing common sense with personal preferences is a winning combination. Add to that an informed purchase and professional installation and the result is a product that will provide years of satisfaction.
The Common Sense Part
This portion requires objectivity. And one question is paramount: What is this room or area used for? Take your time and analyze every option, such as:
- Family only or guest use
- Main or secondary corridor
- Daily meal preparation or formal dining area only
- Kids and their ages and activity level
- Pets and their habits (outside, inside, etc.)
- Outside access from room
- Employee use
- Customer traffic
- Delivery equipment
- Streetside access
Another question to consider: What is your budget? Before moving to the purchase phase, have a handle on the entire project costs, not just material purchase. Think about carpet padding, hardwood or laminate subflooring, trim, etc.
Other items to consider include:
- Amount of flooring you need and dont forget the closets!
- Existing furniture, window dressings or wall color or design
- How the transition from this are to nearby areas will be affected
- What type of trim is needed
The Personal Preferences Part
Now the fun and completely subjective portion of the process! Colors, textures, patterns and designs are a varied as the manufacturers stocking the retail outlets shelves. Let your personality and lifestyle lead your instincts, and remember, beauty is in the eye of the beholder!
While youre having fun, think about this:
- Are you keeping or changing the style of the room (country, modern, etc.)
- What character do you want the room to support (formal, homey, etc.)
- How do you want the flooring to feel when you walk on it (spongy, firm, etc.)
Completing the Deal
Once you think through your options and understand your wants and needs, its time to head to the retailer. Two things should occur: First, you should bring a part of the room youre covering with you (a pillow, for example) so you can compare its appearance with the various styles. Second, take a sample or two with you when you leave, so that you can place the swatch in the room and get an idea of how the potential floor will look in that area.
Some things to remember during your shopping:
- Be patient with yourself and understand that you wont cover the whole flooring industry in one day
- Ask questions and remember that any question you have has probably already been heard by your salesperson
- Dont rush your decision. Make sure youre happy with your choice.
Once you make your choice, the retailer will send a company employee to measure the room. Once completed, your final cost estimate will be offered. Remember to get the estimate in writing and have it spelled out clearly what the estimate covers: just the floor covering or everything (subfloor, installation, adhesives, removal of old flooring, etc.).
The best product in the world is only as good as its installation. Through INSTALL you have access to expert floor covering professionals. Billions of dollars each year are spent on claims by retailers and manufacturers to provide follow-up service to customers who are unhappy with their flooring purchase. The customers aggravation could be alleviated by professional installation procedures. Ask questions about the installers. Insist that they are certified in your product. Ask about the installer and their training. Are they experienced employees or transient subcontractors? Be in control of who installs your project. Then, make sure you choose the right contractor. Finally, insist that your builder or developer hires an INSTALL contractor.
The big day:
Be sure to ask your retailer what is expected of you on installation day, including who is responsible for removing furniture from the area. Also, vacuum the area before the installers arrive to reduce dust particles in the area when the old floor is removed. Once the material arrives, take a look and make sure its what you ordered. And, make sure the direction of the flooring is the way you and your estimator planned it to be. Dont be afraid to ask questions of the installers. They are your advocates and want to ensure you are completely satisfied with your purchase.