There’s no doubt that you learn the most about your trade as a hardwood floor contractor from being on jobsites and actually doing your work.
But, like a lot people, you probably go to the internet first when you have a question. Though there’s nothing like having a trustworthy source — like someone else who works in the same industry as you — you should know about the following go-to online resources where you might be able to find quick answers to any work-related questions you may have.
ContractorTalk.com — Known as the “#1 professional contractor community”. Like FloorMasters, this website includes forums so you can talk shop with contractors from around the country. The difference between the two is that ContractorTalk is more generalized than FloorMasters. Users from all trades participate in the ContractorTalk forums, as opposed to just flooring professionals at FloorMasters. With tens of thousands of posts and forums dedicated to nearly every aspect of running a contracting business, you’re bound to find something interesting to discuss on ContractorTalk.com.
Hardwoodinfo.com — Run by the American Hardwood Information Center, this website offers extensive information about hardwood floors, including installation tips. Hardwoodinfo.com also boasts a hardwood floor photo gallery to provide ideas and inspiration for your next project, and a free Hardwood Species Guide mobile app.
Wood Floor Business — This online accompaniment to the print magazine of the same name provides product reviews, installation tips, business management info, Q+A’s, and more. The site also includes a “Content Toolbox” offering tips about finishing, installation, tool maintenance, and the technical aspects of hardwood flooring. The “Contractor Blog” gives contractors a soapbox from which to tell their stories––learn from others’ experiences or submit a piece so fellow contractors can learn from yours.
NWFA Technical Resources — NWFA members can use their NWFA login info to access online resources including installation guidelines, sand and finish instructions, a guide to giving accurate estimates at jobsites, a wood species guide, and many more useful tools of the trade.
Houzz — Houzz is essentially a social network centered around connecting homeowners with home improvement professionals including contractors, designers, and architects. You might already know that this site serves as an excellent marketing tool for your contracting business, but it’s also a valuable resource when you need ideas for a new project. Browse “ideabooks” for inspiration and view user-submitted questions to gain insight on some questions that might be on your clients’ minds.
The Wood Database — Started in 2007 by Eric Meier as a project to organize information about different wood species, this website has evolved to live up to its name as a veritable database. Access the Janka hardness rating, workability, appearance, pricing, sustainability, graining, common applications, and more information on hundreds of domestic and exotic species. There are detailed pictures of wood so you can tell the difference between species on the spot. The website also provides lengthy articles about hardwood floors that any contractor will be sure to find useful.
The CFS Learning Center — Don’t forget about the resources we have right here on our website! Register for a free CFS web account and gain instant access to resources that make your job as a contractor a little bit easier, including industry white papers, NWFA guidelines, blog posts, and much more.