You are here

[Click Picture to Enlarge]


Written by Jane Trabert Schmitt

You know what hardwood flooring delivers to nearly every room in your home – beauty, character, strength and durability.
But did you know that you can install it yourself?
There’s never been a better time to consider installing your own beautiful hardwood floor, says Mike Caroll, owner/operator of M P Caroll Hardwood, an industry leader since 1985.

Q: Is it really easier than most homeowners think?
A: The do-it-yourself market is through the roof. Everything you need to install a hardwood floor is waiting for you at M P Caroll. Installation lessons are available for our customers who need a little help getting things started. If you have basic carpentry skills and can operate a power saw, you can install your own floors. We’ll show you how.

Q: How much of your sales go to this segment?
A: I’d say 25 percent of what we sell on a yearly basis is going directly to do-it-yourselfers. They come into our store looking for flooring and knowing that they want to install it themselves.

Q: Do you see people who are on the fence about plunging into a project or taking the safe route by hiring a professional installer?
A: Yes, we do, and that’s where we can help them out with installation lessons. We give free lessons to our customers who are a little unsure how to get things started. They can spend an hour with me in our shop. I will go through all of the motions with them and by the time we’re done, they’re ready to go out and install their own floor. And they’re going to do a great job.

Q: What’s the average size floor for do-it-yourselfers?
A: Our average sale is 400 to 500 square feet.

Q: Is there a cost savings?
A: They can save a couple thousand dollars. In the long run, it’s a  huge savings – approximately 50 percent. The average pre-finished oak floor is $8 to $9 a square foot installed. So when you take that $4 out of the labor, they’re saving almost 50 percent.

Q: What is a popular seller these days for do-it-yourselfers  and others?
A: The biggest seller currently is hand-scraped, distressed flooring. They are prefinished. They’re distressed in the factory to look like they have been around for 100 years. The trend has been super-hot for five or six years. It’s probably 50 percent of what we sell right now. The hand-scraped, distressed look has become so popular because of the look, but one of the biggest benefits they offer is they don’t show wear and tear because of the pre-worn look. It’s just like the beat-up blue jeans we buy for our kids. Scratches and dents don’t show up as much.

Q: What installation methods are do-it-yourselfers using?
A: The tongue and groove flooring is still the most popular. That type of floor is nailed down. There are two other types: There are floors that interlock. There is no nailing or gluing needed. It’s called a floating floor. The pieces are milled to “click” together. It’s like putting together a big puzzle. And then there are hardwood floors that are meant to be glued down. This is a pretty easy method, as well, because it doesn’t require any special equipment. Planks of wood are set into the adhesive, almost like you would install ceramic tile.

Q: How long is the average installation?   
A: Most jobs can be done over the weekend – the 400 to 500 square feet. If somebody has never done it before but they have a helper, they can start it on a Friday night and be done on Sunday.

More Features

For years, people have filled their homes with plants — umbrella plants, African violets, all kinds of plants, big and small.

Vertical gardens have long been incorporated into landscapes for their spatial aesthetics and architectural design applications.

The popularity of outdoor living spaces has fueled creativity and innovation in the furniture and accessories responsible for defining these alfresco environments.

Ever wonder how the yard of a neighbor or friend is transformed from a blank slate into an enviable resort-like setting? How do you start the process? Where do you turn?

“You don’t need decoration. You need an exquisite collection of furniture, fabrics, art, lighting, and personal effects.“