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Six Questions You Should Ask Your Flooring Consultant



1. How long have you been in business?

flooring consultantThe longer a local flooring store has been in business, the greater the likelihood it has been ‘endorsed’ by the community. Notwithstanding the larger ‘Big Box’ stores (which benefit from greater buying power and marketing support than their less-known counterparts) smaller and privately owned flooring stores must rely on the quality of their craftsmanship, their overall knowledge and the service they provide their customers. Without mastering either of these components, a store might as well be out of business! Floor Town has been taking care of its customers’ flooring needs, from its location on Rte 17 South in Paramus, since 1957.

2. Are your laminate and engineered hardwood products CARB 2 compliant?

Along with some common building materials and some every day household items, laminates and engineered hardwoods frequently contain various levels of formaldehyde as a bi-product of the adhesives used in the manufacturing process. Formaldehyde, an invisible, odorless toxic gas, can be dangerous if left unregulated.
In the flooring industry, California’s Air Resource Board (aka CARB – a division of the EPA) has set the standards for ‘admissible levels’ of formaldehyde in laminates and engineered hardwoods. CARB’s latest standards fall under the heading of ‘Phase 2’.
Because individual countries are subject to different standards, some manufacturers have taken to shipping their operations to the Far East (namely China) where regulations are far less stringent and manufacturing costs can be reduced. By asking your flooring consultant to show you proof of CARB 2 compliance for the laminate or engineered wood you are considering, you can rest assured that your air quality will remain clean and safe after installation. (That being said it’s always a good idea to keep your windows open for a short while whenever installing floors or shelving that requires assembly with glues containing formaldehyde.) You may rest assured that all laminates and engineered hardwoods in Floor Town’s showroom are CARB 2 certified as this has become a pre-requisite for all suppliers of such products, wanting to do business with Floor Town.

3. Is your store a NWFA member, and are your employees NWFA accredited members?

The National Wood Flooring Association (aka ‘NWFA’) has set the Gold Standard for competence of wood flooring professionals in the United States. Any top quality flooring company will keep up to date with the NWFA standards regarding installation, floor prep, moisture and environmental issues that affect your hardwood investment, as well as the proper care and maintenance of hardwood floors, refinishing, etc.
Here’s a game you can play: when asking this question, see what kind of answer you get. If your flooring consultant has never heard of the NWFA, that will tell you something about his/her overall knowledge of the industry – or, lack thereof. If members of the store’s leadership team aren’t accredited, you might ask “why not? Floor Town is a NWFA accredited member. Its owner and head flooring consultants have been accredited for many years.

4. Do you provide product and product installation warranties?

If a store refuses to provide you with a copy of the manufacturer’s product warranty, don’t do business with them. It’s that simple! All reputable manufacturers understand the necessity to ‘back up’ their products. Furthermore, the installation process is also an area subject to frequent errors and misjudgments. That’s why manufacturers also provide installation warranties. A trust worthy flooring consultant should welcome every opportunity to discuss his/her warranty policies prior to a sale. At Floor Town, all of our customers are protected by an Exclusive Confidence Plus Guarantee on all 3, 4 and 5 star Flooring America Products!

5. Do you have a list of testimonials or references you can share?

Stores who have been in business for a number of years should have plenty of testimonials or references they can share with you. Most people are thrilled when prompted to share their opinions – especially when it comes to customer service! If not, ask yourself “why not?” If a store cannot direct you to any of their online review sites or to specific customers who’d be willing to share with them, again, ask yourself “why not?” At Floor Town, there are over 250 individual customer reviews on sites like Angie’s List, Yelp; Houzz.com; Google, etc.

6. Why are your prices higher/lower than other stores?

This question may appear a little uncomfortable at first but it will, without a doubt, reveal how transparent and trustworthy your flooring consultant truly is. The answer/s you receive to this question should leave you feeling appreciated and understood, irrespective of where they fall on the price scale. More importantly, you should be very clear as to why they charge more (…do they invest a greater percentage of their resources in educating their customers…their staff?) or charge less (do they buy in large volume but skimp in other areas?) than other stores. You may choose to do business with another store, but you’ll feel more confident once you’ve been able to gauge the tone and nature of your flooring consultant’s answer. At Floor Town, our prices are competitive to those of surrounding stores. However, as a Floor Town customer you will further benefit from our consultants’ and installers’ superior product knowledge, their commitment to matching your needs and budget requirements, and a willingness to be straight forward with you if they cannot.

If you have questions about a Floor Design Consultation in New Jersey, please call Floor Town today at 201-261-8848 or fill out our online request form.

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