Ralph's Blog

Realtors Have No Doubt About It: Hardwood Floors Help Sell Homes

Posted on Tue, Oct 29, 2013 @ 17:10 PM

Ask anyone in the hardwood floor industry and they’ll tell you that hardwood flooring is good for home value.

But is that really true? If you’ve got a healthy dose of skepticism, you’ll want more than the word of people who make their living from hardwood floors.

No one knows more about real estate value than real estate agents. So what do they say?

The National Wood Flooring Association asked them, commissioning a national survey of real estate agents. Their answer: 99 percent of agents believe finished hardwood flooring makes a home easier to sell. In other words, according to the people selling homes every day, hardwood floors almost automatically make a home more desirable to buyers.

As far as the actual impact on sales, 90 percent of the real estate agents surveyed said hardwood floors cause homes to sell for more, while 82 percent said they make homes sell faster, which can of course have tremendous financial significance.

What this means is that the cost of the hardwood floors you’ve been dreaming about wouldn’t all be “sunk.” There’s a very good chance you’ll get at least some of the cost back when you sell your home—and possibly most or all of it.

The Enduring Value of Hardwood Floors

When you factor in the added value and marketability that hardwood floors bring to your home—not to mention their longevity— you might be surprised to learn that hardwood floors are actually less expensive in the long run than “cheaper” options such as carpeting or vinyl.

And hardwood floors won’t go out of style. They can always be refinished for a new look, but regardless of the current style, they have a timeless beauty. They’ll certainly never be a turn-off to buyers, like bad carpeting often is.

How Much Value?

Keep in mind that hardwood floors’ effect on home value is influenced by many factors, including:

  • General economic conditions.
  • The local real estate market.
  • The home’s price range.
  • The quality of the flooring materials.
  • The installation quality.
  • How well you take care of the floors (it’s not difficult!).

Nonetheless, you can be sure that if you work with a quality hardwood floor company and maintain your floors properly, your home will sell relatively better with hardwood floors than without—no matter what the market conditions at the time.

Yet as comforting as it is to know the money you spend on finished hardwood floors can add value to your home, don’t forget that the greatest value is intangible—the satisfaction and pleasure you get from the flooring every day you live there.

Tags: the value of hardwood floors, why choose hardwood floors?

Even the dogs are smiling about these hardwood floors…

Posted on Sat, Oct 12, 2013 @ 07:10 AM

DSC_0028_(2)_copy_2 Smiling Dog   

It seems to me the world would be a much better place if we could all love each other like good dog owners love their dogs, and vice versa. When I see a dog lover coming along with a loyal dog, the dog’s tail wagging happily, it makes me feel good.

That’s why when a couple recently visited our showroom and told me they had two large dogs that were like children to them, I was happy I could keep them from making a costly mistake.

They already had a floor in mind—a fir floor with saw marks on it, like they had seen at their friends’ house. But I explained that with their dogs, Katie and Vinnie, they were going to need a harder, more-durable floor. The fir floor would scratch and dent too easily.

But that didn’t mean they had to give up on their dream floor!

We recommended a skip-sawn hickory floor instead, and we put together some samples. Our salesperson, Tom, and I took the couple out back and stained up boards for them, so we could get just the perfect color. They liked what they saw—it fit their vision for a floor with a lot of character—but they still didn’t like the even, consistent look of that flooring’s machined bevels. So we hand-scraped the edges for them.

That’s the type of commitment we bring to our customers—what matters to them, matters to us. The couple ended up with floors that they loved—and which put a smile on Katie’s and Vinnie’s faces. 

And that made me smile, too.

Get a Quote

Tags: stories, about Ralph's, picking the right floor for your lifestyle

5 Reasons Why DIY Refinishing Can Be a Big Mistake

Posted on Wed, Oct 09, 2013 @ 09:10 AM

Maybe it's because of the emergence of do-it-yourself websites and countless DIY television shows, but more people than ever seem to be thinking about refinishing their hardwood flooring themselves.

But before you make the decision to try it yourself, consider these six reasons why it’s usually better for professionals to do the job.

1. You might be very skilled at home-improvement projects, but that doesn’t mean you’re as skilled at refinishing as someone who’s been doing that specific job for years.

Ask yourself, even if you get the job done, will it look as good as it could? Remember, you might save some money, but if you’re dissatisfied with the results, did you really spend your money wisely? It takes experience to get it just right.

2. You can damage the hardwood flooring.

If you don’t have experience with refinishing, there’s the real possibility that you’ll make mistakes while sanding, staining, or applying the finish—mistakes that harm the flooring and can’t be simply (or inexpensively) undone. Without experience with hardwood floor refinishing, this is easy to do, even if you’re good with DIY jobs.

3. The savings probably aren't as much as you think.

You may save a little in a upfront cost because you're not paying for labor, but when you compare the cost of a professional job to what you'll spend on equipment and materials to do it yourself—and then add in your valuable time—you may very well find that you're not really saving much, if anything at all.

4. You will probably take longer to do the job than a pro.

The length of the job will depend on whether sanding and staining are involved, as well as other factors, but however long it takes an experienced hardwood flooring company to do the job, it will certainly take you longer doing it on your own.

And if your time for the project is interrupted by your normal daily life (work, children, etc.) then you could easily find yourself with a drawn-out project, while the rooms being refinished are unusable and the furniture and other stuff you’ve moved out are taking up space in the rest of your home.

5. If you need to sand, you won’t have access to the same equipment as a hardwood flooring company does.

The sanders you can rent are smaller machines that operate on 110 electricity.   The professional machines are heavier and operate on 220 electricity.  The smaller, less-efficient rental sanders can get the job done however they are harder to use and and will take much longer to complete the project.

describe the image

Traditional sanding produces a lot of dust.  We are not aware of any rental machines that have satisfactory dust containment.   So, if you plan on doing the floor sanding process on your own, you will need to plan a few extra days of cleaning.    Professional companies that have dust containment trailers will control about 98% of the dust.   A simple household dusting will be all that is needed after a professional sanding job.

Tags: restoring hardwood floors, dustless sanding, caring for your hardwood floors, remodeling

Latest Posts