Tips On Choosing Your Fitter\/Installer How To Choose The Right Fitter (or at least a good one!) There is a difference between a carpenter and a floor fitter but having said that, many carpenters make excellent wood floor fitters because they know how the product should be treated and they know the potential problems that may arise in the future if they don't take the necessary precautions at time of installation. When you\u2019ve just paid a large amount of your hard-earned cash on a beautiful new\u00a0Oak Flooring, you don\u2019t want some \u2018cowboy\u2019 coming in and ruining it for you, so there are some simple routine tasks to \u2018sift\u2019 through your potential \u2018partners\u2019 for creating your finished floor. Always Get More Than One\u00a0Quote This may seem obvious but it\u2019s amazing how many people ask 1 fitter for a price and accept it there and then, without ever having met them before or seen any of their previous work. Always ask at least three\u00a0and preferably four or five different fitters\u00a0(unless someone has been recommended obviously). The reason we suggest this is because fitters will \u2018price up\u2019 the work differently. You may get one\u00a0that simply prices the job per m2 but you may get another who wants to give you a lump sum price that is calculated from the amount of time it\u2019s going to take to complete. The difference can be incredible when you work it out. Never Accept The Price Over The Phone How some fitters can expect work when they simply respond to enquiries with something like; \u201cI charge \u00a325.00 per M2, plus Vat\u201d beats us! This is because there are so many possible variables so how\u00a0can they assess the amount of work required over the telephone? The vast majority of work is in the preparation of the subfloor (so firstly they need to confirm that either it\u2019s been completed satisfactorily or if they are expected to do it), and in finishing off around the perimeter of the room. Installing wood flooring throughout a standard \u2018box\u2019 shaped room is very simple, it\u2019s around the perimeter where the majority of the work is involved. Just to emphasise the\u00a0point here, the room could be completely square with one doorway, or multi-angled with 27 doorways! So always ask your \u2018potential floor partner\u2019 (because that\u2019s they are\u00a0actually going to be if you choose them) to visit your property and confirm the details there and then. When You Have Your Potential Fitter 'On Site' When you are together with your potential fitter \u2018on site\u2019, ask\u00a0their advice and what they recommend for the best result. Ask\u00a0how he or she would fit the flooring (remember there are four\u00a0different methods) and if they have a\u00a0preference. If they do have a preferred fitting method, ask them\u00a0why? If there are any awkward parts that you\u2019re not sure about, ask the fitter how they will go about solving what you see as a challenge. You\u2019ll be surprised at how much you learn about the person you\u2019re negotiating with by the way they answer your questions. Remember, you\u2019re entering into a \u2018contract partnership\u2019 where both parties should be able to visualise and agree what the finished floor will look like. Can You Visit One Of Their Previous Jobs? This is ideal if you can but not all fitters like to refer people to their past jobs, not because they\u2019re of poor quality but because it\u2019s abusing the privacy of their past customers. We at Oak Floors Online are forever being asked for contact details of previous customers but ask yourself if you would like 20 people a week phoning you to ask how your new floor is doing! Sometimes you\u2019ll find a fitter that\u2019s installed a floor within a commercial premises like a shop or office, so it\u2019s easy to just go along and take a look but that\u2019s not always the case. If you can, speak with someone that\u2019s dealt with the fitter previously. It\u2019s amazing how many finished floors are better when the owner \u2018gets on\u2019 with the fitter, rather than when they don\u2019t. When Can They Fit Your Floor? Make sure you ask their availability. If they say something like; \u201cNow\u201d or "I've got my tools in the van",\u00a0proceed with a little caution\u00a0because if they haven\u2019t got much work on their books there\u2019s sometimes a negative reason. That\u2019s not\u00a0always the case though, and\u00a0possibly they're a\u00a0good fitter\u00a0but maybe\u00a0just completed a job earlier than expected,\u00a0but it\u2019s worth considering. The \u2018when\u2019 question is important because there\u2019s no point being completely thorough and agreeing everything and then discovering that your floor can\u2019t be fitted for another six\u00a0months (unless that happens to fit your schedule obviously). So it\u2019s better to ask this early on in your negotiations with something like; \u201cIf I awarded you the job, when could you do it? What notice do you need to start and\u00a0after you have started, would you\u00a0work through to completion without any breaks?\u201d And Finally \u2013 The Price! Never accept an hourly rate or day rate. NEVER! Always make sure that you either agree a M2 rate or an overall total for everything required before the job starts. It will prevent any issues arising afterwards if everything is agreed regarding cost and charges before the installation starts, rather than afterwards. Make sure you know what\u2019s included in the price, what happens if something else is required during the installation, and who pays for any breakages, leaks, or mishaps (they can happen, so best to cover the possibility now). Then ultimately, it\u2019s all up to you. On your experiences of speaking to your potential fitters and asking them various questions, you now must decide which is the best for your particular situation. You have to assess their personality, their skill level, their quotation, their availability, and most importantly of all\u2026 what your finished floor will look like and how it will perform. Usually, not an easy decision at all, but we hope this helps you make up your mind without too much stress? When a new floor installation is being assessed, we believe a good fitter should be capable of reducing your stress levels, not increase them.