There are a lot of things to consider when buying flooring online. While you may find some advantages to ordering your new flooring online, it’s extremely important to be aware of the risks before you make that high-dollar purchase.
What are some advantages of buying flooring online:
For most people, the biggest advantage to buying flooring online is the price. There are certainly a lot of things out there that appear to be great deals online – and some are.
It’s super easy to find a lot of styles and patterns when you have a wide range of online retailers to choose from. Even though you can’t touch and feel your new flooring before purchasing, you can often find great imagery of the style you’re looking for on websites like Houzz or Pinterest.
What to beware of when buying flooring online:
Consumers are inundated with all kinds of “great deals” when they click on websites for flooring. All with super fantastic deals and warranties, so how can they be fake? The key wording in warranties from online retailers is that you must contact an authorized dealer for any warranty or claim issues. If the website you ordered your material from isn’t an authorized dealer, it may be challenging (or even impossible) to claim your warranty.
While your online store might publish that you can return the merchandise, they often don’t tell you about the cost of shipping it back. Nor do they mention that you’ll be charged 30-50% for a restocking fee on top of the shipping. So, if you’re searching for the best deal by buying your flooring online, it’s important to be aware of these hidden costs that might arise if you need to return your order.
The biggest (think physical) issue with most flooring is logistics. How do you get it home? Flooring is HEAVY, big, long. Carpet, for example, is either 12 or 15 ft long. Most people just are not equipped to receive a 53” flooring trailer in their driveways. Or to unload thousands of pounds of product.
Overall, there isn’t anything wrong with looking and researching flooring online. For example, if you’re an out of towner, with a rental or second home, sometimes your options are limited. Remember though, a picture is very one dimensional. You can’t get a feel for weight or quality online, so it’s important to make sure you’re ordering from a reputable dealer. Do your research first!
When you go to an authorized dealer, you have a sales person who can give you options on various materials that you can touch, taste and feel. We here at Cunningham Flooring have years of experience with products, we know what pros and cons are to various products, and we know how to handle a claim or a warranty issue, because we are the authorized dealer.
Whether you’re ordering online or in-store, a really good flooring purchase is one that lasts for years and makes you fall in love with the way your home looks. Happy Hunting!!