The Best Laminate Flooring Installers of 2022

Photo: istockphoto.com

Homeowners looking for a fast, easy way to hide their old floors under a new layer of beauty often find themselves looking at laminate flooring. These floors, also known as floating floors, lay on top of subfloors or existing finished floors with interlocking strips that stay in place without the use of glue or nails. Laminate flooring is affordable, fast to install, and in many cases, looks just like actual wood or tile flooring.

But a laminate floor will only look its best if it’s installed correctly, and that takes experience. Sure, DIYers might be able to handle this task themselves, but the pros can knock it out of the park—not to mention, save a homeowner time and energy. This guide on choosing the best laminate flooring installers will explain what to look for when choosing a company, as well as highlight some of our favorites.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Empire Today
  2. RUNNER-UP: LL Flooring
  3. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: National Floors Direct
  4. ALSO CONSIDER: The Home Depot

The Best Laminate Flooring Installers Options

Photo: istockphoto.com

What to Consider When Choosing One of the Best Laminate Flooring Installers

While there are plenty of laminate flooring installers out there to choose from, shoppers would do well to do some research before hiring one. The following considerations are some of the most important to keep in mind when searching for a laminate flooring installer.

Service Area

Laminate flooring installers generally work within certain distances from their shops or warehouses. This is known as a service area. Shoppers need to find an installer who services the area in which they live.

Representatives from smaller shops might only travel 50 or so miles from their office. This allows them to get to work quickly and minimize the amount of travel. However, larger outfits may work almost nationwide, as they often have multiple warehouses in each state.

Also, customers may want to consider an aggregator. Aggregators are companies that help put customers in touch with contractors in their area. If a shopper is having a hard time finding a laminate flooring installer in their area, one of these aggregators can likely find a company for them.

Estimate Scheduling

Laminate floor installers will usually schedule an estimate time when they can visit the customer’s home. They’ll take measurements, discuss options, and show the customer how different trims, thresholds, and moldings will work within the home. This is an important step, and customers need to schedule these estimates before the project can move forward.

Most companies offer two methods of scheduling: phone and online. Customers can call the scheduler and discuss times, or they can go online and use the scheduling portal to set up a time that works for them. Very often, they can also use the same online portal to reschedule their appointment if something comes up.

In-Home Shopping Option

It’s one thing to walk through a showroom and look at the different laminate flooring options a company has to offer. It’s another story, however, when the company brings the showroom to the customer’s home.

Some of the best flooring companies offer customers at-home shopping experiences. The representative will show up at the house with a host of samples, photos, and ideas and allow the customer to compare different products. During this process, the customer will compare the different types of laminate flooring and the designs available, as well as the quality and price. They’ll then be able to make a choice that works for their needs, all without leaving their home.

Pricing and Financing

In many cases, several companies will carry the same laminate flooring (or at least very similar laminate flooring options). For example, almost every brand has an option for a red oak hardwood-look floor. However, each company may have slightly different prices, meaning it’s important for shoppers to compare several options before landing on one.

Also, some companies may offer their customers financing options. Whether they help them secure a project loan or simply open a company-specific credit card, these companies allow their customers to pay for their flooring one month at a time rather than in one big sum. This can be a good option for folks who need a floor fast and don’t have the cash on hand, but it may also lead to higher-than-normal interest rates, so again, shoppers will want to weigh their options.

Warranty

Generally speaking, most laminate flooring products come with a manufacturer’s warranty. These warranties protect customers’ investments against defects in the product for anywhere from 5 to 25 years or more.

A similar—though shorter—warranty also exists for labor. Many laminate flooring installers will warranty their installers’ work for up to 1 year. This means that should the floor contract and reveal gaps, or the customer notice that there is chipping on the face of the product that was caused during the installation process, the customer can call the company and have the work repaired.

Customer Support

Knowing how to get a hold of the laminate floor installer can go a long way toward instilling confidence in a wary shopper. Whether it’s to call and complain, compliment the company after the laminate installation, or check on a warranty claim, having a solid means of contacting customer support is important.

Most companies offer phone or email contacts for customer support. However, many companies now offer a chat option on their websites that allows customers to instant message with a customer support representative. This can be a big help for some folks who’d prefer not to speak with anyone or type out lengthy emails and wait for a response.

Our Top Picks

With that background on what to look for when choosing the best laminate flooring installers, it’s time to start shopping. The list below includes some of our top choices for installers, but be sure to keep the top considerations in mind when choosing an installer for your project.

Photo: empiretoday.com

Why It Made the Cut: Empire Today offers plenty of options for laminate flooring, and even provides next-day installation on most in-stock flooring options.

Folks shopping for a wide selection of laminate flooring options from a company that believes in transparent pricing will want to consider Empire Today. This laminate flooring installer offers lots of colors and styles of laminate flooring, and even provides next-day installation for most in-stock flooring options. While it offers a relatively short 1-year installation warranty, it does provide customers with the option for a service plan that covers incidents and accidents—something shoppers with young children or destructive pets might consider.

Empire Today offers online or phone estimate scheduling as well as in-home shopping so customers are able to look at several options and samples from the comfort of their own homes. Also, the company provides transparent pricing that customers can easily understand. Estimates include moving furniture and removing old flooring if necessary, the new floors and underlayment, thresholds and trim, installation, and cleanup.

Specs

  • Estimate scheduling: Online, phone
  • In-home shopping: Yes
  • Next-day installation: For in-stock flooring
  • Warranty: 1-year installation warranty

Pros

  • Wide selection of laminate flooring styles
  • Transparent, all-inclusive price estimate
  • Next-day installation available
  • Service plan coverage for incident- or accident-related damages

Cons

  • Relatively short 1-year installation warranty

The Best Laminate Flooring Installer Option LL Flooring

Photo: llflooring.com

Why It Made the Cut: LL Flooring provides customers the ability to see how a wide range of products will look in their spaces with its high-tech augmented reality tool.

Shoppers who fear purchasing a floor that might not look as good in their home as it does in the showroom can relax. LL Flooring has an augmented reality tool that allows users to see how their favorite flooring choices look in situ. Once the customer feels they’ve narrowed their options, they can schedule an estimate online or over the phone.

Beyond the high-tech approach to shopping, LL Flooring has a wide range of laminate flooring options, many of which cost under $2 per square foot. And the company’s website makes it easy to narrow those choices down thanks to its helpful search filter functions.

While warranty information isn’t readily available and there isn’t an in-home shopping option available, LL Flooring does provide up to four samples of different flooring options for free, with additional samples available for a surcharge.

Specs

  • Estimate scheduling: Online, phone
  • In-home shopping: No
  • Next-day installation: Not available
  • Warranty: Not specified

Pros

  • Wide selection of laminate flooring styles
  • Augmented reality visualizer tool
  • Free samples available online and in-store

Cons

  • No installation warranty information readily available
  • No in-home shopping option

The Best Laminate Flooring Installer Option National Floors Direct

Photo: nationalfloorsdirect.com

Why It Made the Cut: National Floors Direct aims to beat competitor installation prices and includes some ancillary services, like furniture moving, for free.

Shoppers looking to stretch their laminate flooring budget as far as it can reach will want to consider National Floors Direct. This floor installer guarantees to beat competitor installation prices by 15 percent, allowing customers to get the best deal on their installation.

National Floors Direct has other value-minded features for customers as well. While the company does allow for phone estimate scheduling, it gives its customers that book online a $150 discount. Also, since time is money, National Floors Direct can provide next-day installation for customers who live near a warehouse (which are mainly located in the Northeast). Although warranty information isn’t readily available, the company does provide extra services in its pricing free of charge, including furniture moving and premium underlayment where required.

Specs

  • Estimate scheduling: Online, phone
  • In-home shopping: Yes
  • Next-day installation: At select locations
  • Warranty: Not specified

Pros

  • Installation cost guaranteed to be 15 percent lower than competitors’ costs
  • $150 discount for booking installation service online
  • No additional charges for furniture moving or premium underlayment

Cons

  • Next-day flooring installation restricted to the northeastern U.S.
  • No installation warranty information readily available

The Best Laminate Flooring Installer Option The Home Depot

Photo: homedepot.com

Why It Made the Cut: With a nationwide presence of over 2,300 locations and plenty of flooring options to choose from, The Home Depot could be a solution for many shoppers.

Shoppers having a hard time finding a laminate flooring installer to meet their needs can consider The Home Depot. This nationwide retailer has over 2,300 locations and plenty of product options, so even the most frustrated shoppers should be able to find a solution for their project. And, to sweeten the deal a bit, The Home Depot provides a lifetime labor warranty.

The Home Depot offers online estimate scheduling for its customers. In-home measurements cost $50; however, the fee is deducted from the total cost of the project if the customer moves forward. And though in-home shopping isn’t available, customers can order samples for $1 each.

Specs

  • Estimate scheduling: Online
  • In-home shopping: No
  • Next-day installation: Not available
  • Warranty: Lifetime labor warranty

Pros

  • Over 2,300 locations nationwide
  • Lifetime labor warranty

Cons

  • $50 fee for in-home measurements
  • No in-home shopping option

Our Verdict

Folks looking for plenty of flooring options, an in-home shopping experience, and the potential for next-day installation can’t go wrong with Empire Today. However, shoppers who’d prefer to save as much money as possible by utilizing services built into their estimate can consider National Floors Direct.

How We Chose the Best Laminate Flooring Installers

We wanted to ensure we were suggesting only top-tier, nationally recognized companies for this list of the best laminate flooring installers. To do so, we had to call upon all of our experience with DIY flooring projects as well as those we’ve hired out to come up with a list of the most important features and considerations we’d expect to see from these companies.

Once we nailed down what to look for when comparing flooring installers, we performed extensive company research to find the best options. We compared pricing, product selection, installation timelines, and shopping options to ensure that every company on the list met our criteria. Those that didn’t were removed from the list, while the companies that provided enough value were given awards based on their strengths.

Before You Hire One of the Best Laminate Flooring Installers

Laminate flooring is one of the easiest DIY flooring materials to install. Generally speaking, a DIYer with a basic set of tools, relatively healthy knees, and a weekend can learn how to lay laminate flooring on their own. For this reason, some folks may choose to handle the project themselves rather than hiring it out. However, those who are short on time can surely benefit from hiring out for this project. Since installation is straightforward, labor costs will be lower than for traditional hardwood, tile, or carpet installation.

Also, before landing on a particular laminate flooring installer, customers will want to be sure to shop around. Some companies may include hidden fees, while others may include discounts. Shoppers can get estimates from several flooring companies before deciding on which one is best for the project.

Cost of Hiring One of the Best Laminate Flooring Installers

Hiring a laminate flooring installer has its perks, but it does come at a cost. The cost of laminate flooring is about $6 to $14 per square foot (including labor and materials). The laminate flooring installation cost alone ranges between around $4 and $8 per square foot. And, believe it or not, thinner laminate tends to cost more to install than thicker laminate despite the lower material cost. This is because the tongues, grooves, and overall rigidity of thin laminate make it more difficult to install.

Often included in the cost to install laminate flooring is the cost of removing furniture, hauling away materials, and installing the underlayment. Any subfloor repair or replacement will cost extra, which typically runs around $35 per hour.

The Advantages of Using One of the Best Laminate Flooring Installers

DIY laminate flooring installations are certainly doable, but some gaps and transitions can be difficult for an inexperienced DIYer to tackle. They often require certain moldings or transitions with which a DIYer might not be familiar—but professionals know exactly how to install laminate flooring with ease.

The best laminate flooring installers also provide a warranty on their labor. If there are any gaps, scrapes, or chips that occur during installation, the customer can call the company and have it fix the damage under the warranty.

Finally, flooring projects can displace entire rooms’ worth of furniture, so it’s best to finish them fast. A professional laminate flooring installer can tackle these projects quickly, allowing the customer’s life to get back to normal sooner.

  • Professional laminate installers understand the moldings and transitions required for installing laminate flooring.
  • Labor is under warranty with most laminate flooring installers.
  • Professional installers can complete a laminate flooring installation in less time than a DIYer, allowing the home to get back to normal sooner.

FAQs

That might seem like a lot of information about the best laminate flooring installers, but there may still be some questions floating around. The following includes some of the most frequently asked questions about laminate floors and their installation. Be sure to check for answers to your question listed below.

Q. How much does it cost to professionally install laminate flooring?

Generally speaking, customers can expect the cost of installing laminate flooring to fall between $6 to $14 per square foot. This typically includes materials and labor along with hauling away any debris.

Q. Is it cheaper to install carpet or laminate flooring?

Laminate flooring installation, along with the materials, is more expensive up front than carpeting. But laminate floors often last longer, meaning it’s less expensive in the long run.

Q. Is laminate flooring durable?

The best laminate flooring is extremely durable. It has a clear wear layer on the face that is difficult to scratch or gouge, and many options are waterproof.

Q. Do floor installers move appliances?

In most cases, flooring installers will move appliances out of the way. However, if there are gas appliances in the home (such as a stove), they may not move them. It’s important to speak to the flooring installer to find out ahead of the installation.

Q. How do I recognize good laminate flooring installers?

Our guide should point most shoppers in the right direction. However, be sure to ask any potential installers for references; a portfolio; and copies of any licenses, certifications, or insurance that they are required to carry in your area.