One of the best investments you can do for your home is having hardwood flooring. Whether you want to install new wood, take out the carpet to expose and refinish the original hardwood or implement repairs to your existing floor, hiring a professional flooring contractor is a great idea. Similar to most trades, there are so many contractors out there to choose from. Here some of the most important considerations to remember when you are searching for a hardwood floor refinishing contractor in Pittsburgh.
Licensing, Bonding and Insurance
Some states do not require flooring contractors to be licensed, but many do. A valid license is a good indicator that your contractor is in good standing both legally and financially. Make sure your flooring contractor holds the proper bonding and insurance, which are essential requisites for experienced and skilled hardwood flooring installers. Because flooring entails a significant investment and since maintenance requires heavy machinery that can easily damage a floor, it's vital to find out if your flooring contractor holds the proper insurance policies.
Membership in Professional Organizations
Are they a member of the National Wood Flooring Association? Any installer you hire must abide by the NFWA guidelines otherwise it could invalidate your warranty. Keep in mind though that a reputable installer does not have to be a member of NWFA in order to observe their installation guidelines. For instance, if you have a family member or neighbor who you know has extensive experience in installing hardwood floors, then as long as that friend or neighbor properly observes the installation guidelines, you should be good to go.
Request Estimates from Each of the Hardwood Floor Contractors
Be definite about the specifications of the job. Write them down, and give a copy to each potential contractor so that you can compare the quotes they provide. Furthermore, ask each contractor to enumerate the materials that will be used and how much of each will be needed. This is so you can ensure that each one of them is using the same supplies and quantities.
Have a Written Contract
Execute a contract with your chosen wood floor refinishers, defining the work to be done, the cost and payment schedule, start date and expected completion date. Do not forget that when the project involves installation of your own wood or refinishing of an existing floor, the contractor may request a small booking deposit. This is meant for securing a date for your project. This deposit should not be more than 20% of the total cost of the project and is typically not refundable if you cancel the job or want to reschedule at the last minute.