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Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a flooring professional during the COVID-19 pandemic?

To safely set up a consultation or appointment with a flooring professional and avoid the risk of transmitting COVID-19, start with an online search. Contact the professional through a message and ask to set up a video or phone call to discuss the project. This lets the professional visualize what needs to be done without physically needing to be there. Discuss the project’s timeline, budget, virtual payment capabilities and adherence to guidelines set forth locally and by the CDC.

How can I find out if a flooring professional is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?

To find out whether a flooring professional is considered an essential service in the current coronavirus pandemic, consult your city or state’s government website. To get a sense of the national recommendations, check CISA’s Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19 webpage

This page lists 16 different infrastructure sectors that are officially considered essential during this time. However, not all jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure. Ultimately, you should consult with your local government. 

Are there ways to be safe if I hire a flooring professional when social distancing?

If you hire a flooring professional for an outdoor project, you may be able to avoid person-to-person contact with the pro. If you hire a pro for an indoor job, avoid physical contact, sanitize surfaces and use virtual payments like PayPal, Venmo, Google Pay and Square Cash App to complete transactions instead of using cash or checks. Determine a strategy with the flooring professional when you contact them.

How long does it take to install a hardwood floor and a concrete floor?

The time it takes to install hardwood and concrete floors varies based on the condition of your current floors, the size of your floors and other factors. Use the following information to gauge how long your flooring installation might take.

Time it takes to install a hardwood floor: Several days to 2+ weeks

Hardwood floor installation can take anywhere from a few days to more than two weeks, depending on demolition, wood type, the condition of your subfloor, total square footage of the project and installation method. Demolition is necessary if you have existing flooring you want to replace with hardwood floors. New-construction homes do not require this step, as the subfloor is primed and ready for floor installation.

During demolition, the flooring crew may find that your subfloor has damaged wood, uneven surfaces or other problems that must be addressed before the new wood can be laid down. Subfloor repair can take a few hours to several days, depending on what’s hiding underneath your floor. The wood for your new floor generally arrives a few days before any work begins. 

The actual wood installation may take several days or more, depending on the size of your home and what type of custom cutting and designs are desired. If your flooring is not prefinished, the unfinished wood must then be sanded and stained in the home to treat and protect your new investment. Typically, staining takes a full day to dry, and multiple coats are applied. 

For a more accurate timeframe of how long it will take to install hardwood floors in your home, reach out to one of the best flooring companies near you.

Time it takes to install a concrete floor: 2 days to 1 week

Installing concrete floors can take anywhere from two days to a week, depending on what you need done. Some of the factors that can impact how long it will take to install concrete floors are: 

  • The size of the space
  • The stain or finish
  • The condition of your existing floor
  • Whether you want intricate, simple or no designs 
  • The overall complexity of the project

To get an accurate estimate of how long installing concrete floors will take for your home, speak to a concrete contractor near you. 

Can I use digital payments to pay for floor installation, replacement or repairs?

Many local flooring professionals offer digital payments to conduct transactions for floor repairs, installation, replacement and more. This trend has been increasing during the COVID-19 pandemic, which is prompting flooring professionals to take payments through Venmo, Square Cash, PayPal, Google Pay, Zelle and other convenient platforms. 

To ensure you can safely pay for the service, contact the professional beforehand and ask which services are acceptable. Take any measures necessary to comply with guidelines on social distancing.

Does a flooring professional need to enter my home?

If the flooring project is located inside your residence, performing the job would require the flooring professional to enter your home. This is not recommended by the CDC during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, if a flooring project takes place in a separate location outside of your home, the flooring professional will not need to enter your home. 

Talk to flooring professionals in your area to see if it’s necessary for them to enter your home. If so, you might want to postpone the project until social distancing guidelines are relaxed by the government.

How much does it cost to install hardwood floors?

The cost of hardwood floors will depend primarily on the total square footage of flooring, the type of wood you select, the cost of labor in your region, and any preparation or repair work that needs to take place before installation. Selecting exotic woods, such as teak, will result in a higher cost for the project than a more affordable wood such as oak. The national average cost of hardwood floor installation is $5,750. Here are some examples of different woods and their average costs; actual costs will vary depending on the factors listed above.

  • Basic wood floor installation: $3 per square foot from a wood floor installation company.
    • The product cost for hand-scraped ¾-inch oak planks: $7 per square foot.
  • 620 square feet of maple floor:
    • Residential installation, total project cost: ~ $2,400 with five days of labor.
    • ¾-inch dark stained maple installed on top of new concrete in three rooms, a hallways, and a staircase.  
      • Cost for total project: ~$3.87 per square foot.

Do flooring professionals offer remote or virtual services?

Because flooring work has to be done in-person, flooring professionals are typically unable to perform work virtually. If you come across a pro's profile that states they're offering remote services, message the pro to see what those services include.

If you plan to get indoor flooring installed once the pandemic is over, you can ask potential flooring specialists if they host virtual consultations through video calls and digital messaging. Compare flooring professionals in your area online to find the right fit, and book an appointment.

What is the best hardwood floor?

The best hardwood floors are made from durable, hard species like oak, maple and cherry. Solid hardwood is typically the better choice over engineered wood because you can sand out the scratches multiple times. However, engineered hardwood is better equipped for humid households. 

Consider buying prefinished hardwood flooring, which can be more durable and simplify the installation process. Plus, prefinished wood often comes with a warranty from the factory.

Bamboo is another popular option, though be aware that some might not be as eco-friendly as others due to its production process. Some of the popular hardwood floor brands are Bruce, Carlisle and Lumber Liquidators.

To ensure you choose the best type of wood flooring for your home, hire one of the top hardwood floor installation professionals near you.

Do engineered wood floors scratch easily?

Yes, but engineered wood flooring has the same susceptibility to scratching as hardwood flooring. Engineering wood floors have a layer of real wood on top. For this reason, engineered hardwood reacts the same way that regular hardwood does to scratching. If you don’t mind a few character marks on your floor like small scratches and dents, this is not a problem. However, engineered wood can be sanded down and resealed if the damage gets too great.

Find a hardwood floor professional in your area who can tell you more about the pros and cons of engineered wood floors.

Reviews for Philadelphia hardwood floor contractors
Catherine C.
Ben and his crew did a fantastic job. Over the last 12 months I hired a number contractors to do everything from electrical work to window & door installation. Out of all the contractors I worked with, these guys were the best! No headaches, no hassles, no having to deal with getting them to correct shoddy work. The team at Classic Hardwood was professional and courteous...They did everything as promised & cleaned up after. I highly recommend Classic Hardwood Floors. Thank you so much Ben, Jose and team for making our floors look AWESOME!!
Classic Hardwood floors & construction LLCClassic Hardwood floors & construction LLC
John W.
Ben and his team are AWESOME, they came in and got right to work!  They are very professional and experienced.  A job that most contractors take 3 days to do, they did in 1 day!  They took my floors from drab and dull to shiny and beautiful!  Customer satisfaction is their only goal & when they are working for you, they make you feel like you're their only priority, no skimping on quality with these guys and their prices are fantastic!  If you want quality work for a fair cost, call Ben at Classic Hardwood Floors, I guarantee you that you will be in aw over how good these guys are and very efficient!  I was 150% satisfied with the work they did for me!
Classic Hardwood floors & construction LLCClassic Hardwood floors & construction LLC
Marty M.
My elderly parents wanted a new floor in their kitchen which had been carpeted for years. Once they decided on their choice of bamboo hardwood it was time to find a contractor for installation. AI Installers was one of four contractors who responded. Out of the four they were by far the most responsive to my inquiries and questions. I am always skeptical of contractors but these guys were a breath of fresh air! Their quote for materials and labor was reasonable and fair and most importantly within the range that my folks had budgeted for. Within a couple of days Luciano was able to come by and evaluate the space and we scheduled a date for installation. They procured the materials and arrived on the scheduled day. Luciano and Bruno were professional, courteous, and respectful. Any issue they encountered during installation was immediately brought to my attention for review. Adjustments were minor and issues were resolved without affecting the cost. This alone was proof of the attention to detail and the care they took in completing the job from start to finish. My parents love the new floor! All said and done these guys were awesome!
Ai Associated InstallersAi Associated Installers
Erica H.
Let me get right to the point: Ben and his team are amazing! My husband and I recently moved into a new home and wanted carpet removed from stairs and two rooms and replaced with hardwood, and tile in the basement. From our first meeting/walk-thru, we knew these were the folks to do our floors. Ben talked us through all details, and worked with us to schedule the work (which was no easy task as we were trying to get work done before we moved in and our schedule tight). When schedule conflicts came up, Ben worked with us to find news days and times to get the work done in a timely manner. Though we were excited to find the original wood floor under the carpet, we were concerned about areas where the previous contractors had poorly patched the floor or filled with plywood…but after Ben’s team worked their magic, our two rooms and stairs look like this is the way they’ve always been! They matched the color and style of the existing wood floors on the main floor wonderfully. But I must say, now we notice the difference in quality of the new floors and stairs compared to the floors done by the sellers, so I’m pretty sure we’re going to have them back to work the same magic on our main floor. Next to their tile work in the basement…flawless. Their overall attention to detail is impressive and SO appreciated. Recommended?…Yep! Definitely! Absolutely!
Classic Hardwood floors & construction LLCClassic Hardwood floors & construction LLC
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