How Do Contractors Charge for Laminate Flooring?

Answered by Jeffrey ~ July 2, 2010 ~ No Comments

Should our Seattle kitchen flooring contractor charge us while the laminate glue dries? It can take as much as 48 hours to dry before the contractor comes back to sign off on the work. Is this a common practice? I'm worried.

Jerry B. ~ Seattle, Washington

Jeffrey Anderson

Hi Jerry, I can understand your concern, I would be worried, too! Most flooring contractors charge a set price based on the square feet or square yards of flooring materials needed for the project. I can't imagine that flooring contractors in Seattle, Washington would be any different.

An example would be if you need a new floor for your kitchen. The flooring contractor would send out a sales person or an estimator to look at your kitchen and give you pricing for various types of materials. The estimator is going to measure your kitchen and look to see if there are any issues which might cause it to be a more difficult installation. Some flooring contractors have their own installation crews and only sub out work to independent installation crews if they are busy. Other companies use only independent crews, and sometimes crews charge additional based on the difficulty of the installation.

The estimator is then going to give you a price for the project. The price is going to be based on their measurement of the kitchen and a square foot or square yard cost for the material and labor. Don't think that you can measure your kitchen or any other room in your house and come up with their figures, as they do measurements a little differently.

Flooring usually comes from the manufacturer in cartons or rolls and if their measurement of the room shows that they are going to have to go into a partial carton or to get the carpet seams to look right they are going to have to use additional carpet, then you are probably going to be charged for that additional material even though it seems like it's more than the room needs. That's why you shouldn't feel shy about asking the installers to leave the material that is left over at the end of the job. You are paying for it, and if they don't leave it with you, it is going to end up in a dumpster or someone's garage.

When the flooring contractor gives you a total price it doesn't matter if the job takes twice as long to do as they thought or they have to wait a week for the glue to dry, it shouldn't cost you any additional money. The exception to this might be if something you do causes them to have to come back to do a repair or they are not able to finish when planned due to a scheduling change you make. In those cases you might receive a trip charge or an hourly charge.

I suggest you call some other flooring contractors around Seattle who do kitchen floors and explain the situation to get their take on it. Installation in the Washington area may be different than I am familiar with due to high humidity or something I am unaware of.

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