Home Depot vs flooring outlet center for laminate

popentxJuly 21, 2008

I've just started looking at laminate flooring options. I found a flooring outlet that offers a variety of in-stock laminate options that range in price up to $5.29 per sq foot. The high-end options were what interested me the most. I was suprised that Home Depot offers a Dupont and Pergo product that top out a little over $3 per square foot. Is there a big difference in quality or appearance? Why the big price discrepancy?

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I've been pondering that myself. In my experience, the more expensive laminates seem to have longer warranties, and a better selection of nice-looking patterns, textures, grooves and so on.

One thing I found is that the $3 and under selection seems to be double and triple-planked on each board, i.e. you'll have two or three strips on each board, and where they fit together, it's obviously a laminate install, because no flooring installer would place three boards alongside each other without staggering the ends. A single-planked install looks more like real wood (it may also be a bit more work).

I installed the $2.50/sq-ft stuff in my home office, a small room used only be me, where the flooring is not a showcase thing.

In my basement, where the flooring runs through a hallway and a guestroom, I want to have a nicer "single-planked" look, and am looking at a pricier $4.50/sq-ft solution.

My local Home Depot does seem to have some of the pricier stuff, but it's in the special order section, and the selection isn't as good as in the flooring places. I was considering a $3.79 special-order from HD.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 4:57PM
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Please give a local retailer the opportunity to show you a laminate of equal quality as the box stores. My store can beat any price the box stores offer as long as the consumer is willing to compare apples to apples. Get the information on the box store laminate and show your local retailer the specs. He/she will have a style that is of equal quality and the price just might surprise you.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 5:49PM
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I am in the same situation you are in. I've been to Lowes, Home Depot and iFLOOR. I was considering a special order from Lowes. What brand(s) are you looking at?

al horses -- I have been to several local retailers and would really love to give them my business. I was looking at the high-end Armstrong laminate itself and after Lowe's sale on special orders, it is $2.00 - $2.50 sq. ft. more at the local retailers. Their installation cost is approximately $1.00 - $1.25 a square foot more (same comparison of what is included....moving furniture, baseboard, etc....) and we are familiar with the flooring store that Lowe's uses for their installs. It just doesn't seem that the local stores can compete, and unfortunately, at 600 square feet that is a big difference. Do you have any suggestions?

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 5:44AM
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With Lowes, you have to many people with their hand in the pie for the installation. The guy actually doing the install labor is making peanuts! Installers that make peanuts, cut corners to make up for the low profit in the job. Buyer Beware, not all installers are created equal. Everything is subcontracted out, even at the local retailer. I suggest buying your flooring anywhere you wish, but for your sake, interview and hire your own independent installation professional, that has a great reference list, and work ethic. Hire an installer that will actually be there doing the work, not someone that drops off 3 illegals and then leaves.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 12:44AM
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Seems Lowes Over measures! I had two people come from lowes one guy was 180 Sq Ft then another was 171 sq FT when I was quoted 142 Sq ft installed with extra from someone else. Seemed odd when a friend of mine had carpeting put in and Lowes Overmeasured as well. It amazes me how so many different people come up with different measurements. One guy was 134 sq FT another was 142 Sq Ft and another was 161 SQ FT. So who would you go with??? Its for wood flooring in a small area

    Bookmark   July 23, 2008 at 5:18PM
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Some may be charging for actual sq.ft. and some may be charging or estimating with the required waste that is added to the actual sq.ft.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2008 at 10:13PM
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I know but the lesser measurements included overage

    Bookmark   July 25, 2008 at 6:52AM
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Hi floorguy,

What's the best way to find an independent installation professional? We live in a fairly small town, I've asked around and didn't get anywhere, and I don't see anything advertised in the local newspapers.


    Bookmark   July 25, 2008 at 7:39AM
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Look into www.CFIinstallers.com
or www.woodfloors.org

They have a type in your zip code, to find someone near you.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2008 at 6:42PM
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Thank you!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2008 at 6:39AM
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