Finding the right type of flooring is an essential choice for homeowners. As a homebuilder and contractor, my experience helping homeowners evaluate their options and work with various flooring companies varies. While all these companies offer a wide array of flooring options at good price points, clients value having a breakdown of the priorities that matter most to them.
I selected three major direct-to-consumer companies to evaluate for this article. 50 Floor, Empire and Luna install flooring and offer a wide range of options, but they vary in prices and services provided. Here are the comparisons and significant differences among them.
Types of Flooring Offered
Each company has a unique selection of hardwood, carpeting and vinyl. Here are some of the main flooring choices for each company. Generally, buyers will find that many of the product offerings are similar across these competitors, so the real decision points are value, service and quality differentiators.
50 Floor offers engineered hardwood, waterproof laminate flooring, vinyl, carpeting and tile. It features various materials, from hickory to birch, and provides many types of carpeting, such as Berber, plush, pattern and frieze. Vinyl materials include luxury vinyl plank, luxury vinyl tile and sheet vinyl.
Empire offers carpet, laminate, vinyl, hardwood and tile. It also supplies flooring for commercial businesses, including carpeting and vinyl. It features various carpet selections, including hypoallergenic and weather-resistant options, as well as engineered and solid wood.
Luna provides homeowners with carpeting, tile, laminate, vinyl or hardwood flooring. Luna offers various carpet materials like texture plush, frieze and pattern. It features engineered and solid wood, as well as porcelain and ceramic choices for those interested in a more modern appearance. It also has vinyl flooring in plank and tile selections.
Pricing and Price Matching Policies
For many customers, value is the main priority in figuring out which flooring company is best for their home.
Finding a reasonable price is important, especially for those on a budget. This section explores how each competitor determines quotes, deals with price matching and whether they offer promotions or discounts.
The main difference between the companies’ price matching policies is that Empire has acquired Luna Flooring — though they operate as separate companies under one umbrella — and sometimes attempt to disguise white labeling products from third-party suppliers.
White labeling is a fairly common practice where suppliers offer third-party product offerings under their corporate branding. While this practice helps third-parties enter the market and can pass on savings to customers, customers are better empowered to shop around and request a price match if they know who manufactures the product they are considering.
In contrast, one benefit of 50 Floor’s price matching policy is that it is transparent about white label products, enabling customers to research prices more easily.
Here is some more pricing information for each business. For specific promotions, check out the company's website or talk with a representative.
The company offers a free in-home consultation to determine the price. It brings samples to customers’ houses during the visit to choose which flooring fits their space and style. In addition, 50 Floor provides products with a price-match guarantee, so savvy customers can research their options after receiving a quote.
It also issues promotions, such as a 60% off sale for carpet, hardwood, vinyl, tile and laminate. However, interest will apply if the purchase balance is not paid off within the promotional period.
Empire also offers a free home estimate for pricing information. The company brings samples to customers' houses and gives an all-inclusive price estimate. This includes expenses like moving the furniture and removing old flooring.
It also features promotions. For a limited time, if customers buy one room of flooring, they get carpet, hardwood, vinyl or laminate in all other rooms for $50. However, homeowners still need to pay for installation, padding and materials.
A professional visits the home to supply samples and discuss pricing. There are two different types of financing plans. One offers no interest if the product is paid in full within 12 months. The other choice is 48 monthly payments with an 11.99% annual percentage rate.
A Luna credit card is issued by Wells Fargo bank to pay for the purchases. Monthly payments are required during the promotional period.
Sometimes products can be defective, so having a good warranty policy is essential. Here are the different procedures for each company.
The company gives a gold-star one year installation warranty. The policy guarantees professional quality in keeping with industry standards. If a product needs further installation, 50 Floor will provide that service at no additional expense for the first year.
This is only valid for original owner-occupied installations completed by 50 Floor contractors. Also, this policy is invalid if there are issues due to improper maintenance — so make sure you use reliable flooring installers from 50 Floor or contractors you trust.
Empire also has a one-year warranty for flooring and window treatments. This includes all types, such as carpeting, hardwood and laminate. If a homeowner needs this service, they can contact the company to submit a claim.
Empire’s warranty limitations are similar to their competitors’. These claims must be submitted as soon as the problem is discovered. The company will inspect the home and see if the claim is valid and will repair, reinstall or refund the purchase.
Luna issues a two-year warranty on its flooring options. The guarantee is only given to the owner. Also, any installation or removal done by someone other than a Luna contractor invalidates the policy.
Homeowners can review this warranty before signing the sales agreement. They must call the company directly to submit a claim. Luna will then schedule a home appointment for an inspection.
It offers a 30-Day Love Your Floor Promise, as well. If someone is not happy with their flooring within the initial period, they can choose a new color or style for free.
All three companies offer a home installation, so people can work with a professional to make sure their flooring orders are installed evenly and safely. Home installation is helpful for keeping the manufacturer’s warranty and creating a smooth flooring experience.
All three suppliers have very similar services, so it’s best to chat through options with a representative to get a feel for the customer service and professionalism of the company you go with.
At-home consultations are a major feature of the direct-to-consumer business. 50 Floor brings samples to the house and guides people through the selection process. It reviews products and answers any questions.
Plus, representatives help move furniture, remove the old flooring and inspect the subfloor. Installers are licensed and vetted by 50 Floor and can complete a flooring installation in one day. Service is followed by post installation cleanup, including old floor removal.
Empire also supplies homeowners with various samples and guidance. They must call or set up an appointment online for an at-home visit.
The company also offers professional installation, from moving furniture to cleaning up. At the end of the consultation, contractors will give an upfront pricing estimate.
Luna is no different from its sibling company, Empire. Luna will measure the room and give an understandable quote at no cost. In addition, it expertly installs flooring and gets rid of the old flooring.
General Customer Reviews
Reading through policy information is one thing, but what is it actually like to purchase from one of these flooring companies? Reviews can help people gain some outside perspective when they’re looking for good service.
We all know that oline reviews sometimes need to be taken with a grain of salt. To try and fairly measure customer responses, I selected three Angie’s List profiles of the companies and attempted to find locations with similar amounts of reviews. Luna Flooring is a smaller company, so their rating is based on only nine reviews. Here’s what I found:
- Location: Georgia
- Ratings: 109
- Stars: 4.1
- Happy customers comment on professionalism, speed and quality of the consultation and installation. Unhappy reviews express issues with the flooring installation.
- Location: Philadelphia, PA
- Ratings: 114
- Stars: 3.7
- Happy customers comment on a positive installation experience and speed of service. Unhappy customers express concerns about pushy sales practices and installation issues.
- Location: Massachusetts
- Ratings: 9
- Stars: 2
- Happy customers report a hassle-free installation experience. Unhappy customers commented on employee turnover and lack of follow-up that made completing services difficult.
Of course, as with any nation-wide companies, I always recommend you look up your local dealer and find reviews from people in your region. Some people feel motivated to leave a third-party review after having an especially positive or negative experience, so reviews are best considered at the aggregate level.
Which Flooring Company is Best?
These three direct-to-consumer flooring companies have a business proposition that’s convenient for customers — get an at-home consultation and on-site quote, then have the option to purchase flooring without a middleman and secure installation to boot.
While these companies offer similar products and services, differentiating the best option for your home comes down to how you assess differences in price matching, customer experiences and installation policies.
After comparing the price-matching policies, 50 Floor may be the best option for customers wary of pushy sales practices, as they offer well-reviewed services without trying to disguise white labeled products. However, homeowners should consider their local supplier options and flooring preferences to determine the ultimate best choice for them.
Subscribe to CommentsComment