Some Tips to consider while shopping for a new floor:
We've found that many installations and service issues can be distilled down to educating our customers to the things we do every day.
For most people, putting new floor covering down is not an everyday thing . . . except for us! We experience these questions every day, that's why we're the experts!
Some questions that we will need answers to, before we can begin:
How well is what's now in the room held down?
What type of adhesives are under your existing floor & are they even legal to expose?
Why we probably can't "just go over it?"
How long do you want this to last?
How do you want the room to feel?
What kind of wall moldings do you have? Is is glued to the walls?
Do you need us to remove and replace the toilet? And if so, will you clean it first?
Who is going to remove the furniture?
Who is going to remove & haul away your old flooring?
What about the piano, the organ, the grandfather clock, the computer, the aquarium, the slate pool table, the waterbed?
Do we need to talk about "invisible" seams? No one can ever promise "an invisible seam." Your furniture, upholstery, and your cabinets don't have invisible seams... why should your carpet, or your vinyl, or your laminate have "invisible seams?" We promise that they'll be tight, and matched, and will perform well. And sometimes they really are invisible, but we can't guarantee it.
Are you sensitive to certain industrial chemicals that are otherwise considered safe?
The following are some questions that need some answers in order for us to do our work:
Will the gas company [or plumber] really come before we do to disconnect the gas line to the stove as promised?
Will 98 year old grandma understand that her bathroom will not be functional for two days?
Have you considered going on vacation while we are completely gutting your kitchen and bath for three weeks... you really will be inconvenienced a great deal if you try to live here while your house is non-functional... it tends to make you hate the process - and that's if there are no major suprises!
Did you realize that the distance from the Rte 102 (or other main road) turnoff to your house was really 7 miles and not "just a little ways down the road"?
Pets & your floor installation:
Can you keep the cats away from freshly spread adhesives?
Did you know that allowing seam sealers ample time to dry before walking in the room, means Fido & Kitty, too?
Will the 200 pound dog really stay out of the room in your absence when instructed to do so?
Will the 4 ounce gerbil really stay in its unsecure cage?
It's really not up to us to make sure your six cats don't get out...
Can you really stop the mina bird from showering the floor with seed shells after we spread the glue?
Are you sure the spider monkey won't go berserk like it did when we measured?
Your choices, what you should know:
Did you know that there are different types of underlayment that have different attributes?
Do you want attention to go to the flooring, or do you want the flooring to compliment other parts of the room?
Do you want to be able to take your flooring with you when you move, do you care (most folks don't, but you never know)...
Are you prepared for surprises that are impossible to foresee?
Like a snowstorm that makes your street impassable?
The rot under your dishwasher or bathtub or toilet?
The leak that you thought was from the shower is really a bad dormer roof?
There just aren't conventional joists under your 150 year old farmhouse... they are in fact trees with bark still on them and that's why your floor is so uneven and "bouncy" - and no, we can't make squeaks go away by just putting a hundred screws in your floor... not always, anyway.
Did you make sure the window over the garage really works because the carpet that won't fit up the spiral staircase and can't get to the third floor bedroom needs a clearer path to the room?
Sure I'd like to save some money and do some of the work myself...
How much of this installation are YOU the customer prepared to share?
Will you really do the things that you said that you would? (and before we get there?)
Will you remember to plow the driveway, and leave us room to get our tools, supplies and your floor out of the truck?
Will you remember to take the dirty dishes out of the sink when we come to do your countertop?
Will you remember to flush and clean the toilet before we remove it to do the floor?
Will you remember to move the furniture that you said you would... all of it?
At the beginning of a flooring project, where do we start?
At The Floor Store, the first questions we like to clarify are the following:
1. What type of floor covering are you most interested in?
2. What is on the existing floor now? What's the subfloor? On or below grade?
3. Do you plan to make changes? [Floor area? Function? Cabinets, appliances, doors?] Ideally, those changes should take place before we visit your home.
4. What are the approximate dimensions of the floor area? Can you supply a floor plan with dimensions? Ultimately [if you require an installation quote,] we will come have a look.
5. When we schedule a visit, we will draw your floor area[s], measure them, take a few pictures, then return to prepare an exact quote based on your flooring choice[s] - We will then send a proposal to you.
Everything else is about design, color & pattern - and of course: price. If you are getting other quotes from other sources, be sure to compare them appropriately: same products; same area; same scope of work; same "promises" - just to be fair to all parties.
When you visit the store, you will be encouraged to bring samples home to see them in your surroundings [colors, lighting, textures, style, furniture, etc.]. We just sign them out to you, and we can usually pick them up when we visit your home [or you can bring them back when you are done with them - a week or two is not an uncommon amount of time to have them at your home. Up to you and your schedule.]
Speaking of "schedule," It may take a few days or as much as a week to get to your home to measure before a quote [depending on your schedule & ours.] Our most preferred times to visit your home are morning hours before we open or afternoon hours after we close. Store hours are Tues through Saturday 9 to 4 - we can only schedule Saturday appointments when no other day is possible [it's our busiest day of the week in the store.] Then it may take a few days or so to send you a quote [assuming you have made a flooring choice.] From that point, depending on the time of year, installations can range from being 2-3 weeks ahead - to 5-7 weeks ahead from time of order. Winter has the slower months; spring & summer months typically are the busy ones.
The Floor Store asks for a 50% deposit before ordering, and the balance is due on completion. We will ask for a signature of approval on our contract. The deposit can be made with a credit card [on the phone for quicker service if you like - this is also true for the balance] - cash & checks are fine as well - and the "signature" can be made with a simple text statement by email or fax - also for quickness & convenience if you prefer.
Of course, you can always call or email with questions or advice about your flooring project.
...Important Flooring Tips
12 Main Street West Stockbridge, MA 01266 Tel: (413) 232-7175 Fax: (413) 232-4659