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Lumber Liquidators Review: Is the Upstart Flooring Retailer Still Good Anymore?

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating
User Rating 1 Star Rating (46 Reviews)

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Lumber Liquidators

Lumber Liquidators

© Lumber Liquidators

The Bottom Line

Lumber Liquidators is no longer the "hot insider secret" they were of just ten years ago. Prices are now more in line with other flooring outlets (but at least not more expensive). Product quality is a perennial problem. But Lumber Liquidators, for all its issues, is still the "go to" place when you are serious about hardwood, engineered, and laminate flooring--without being bothered by pesky salespeople.
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Pros

  • Low Prices
  • Increasing Number of Locations
  • Some Good Clearance Items
  • Wide Selection

Cons

  • Zero Customer Service
  • Product Dilution
  • Problems with Quality (its house brand, Bellawood)
  • No Installation Help

Description

  • Lumber Liquidators is a discount hardwood, engineered wood, and laminate flooring retail outlet.
  • Decent prices across the board.
  • Wide selection of unfinished flooring--a rarity to find this nowadays.
  • Purveyor of discount flooring Bellawood.
  • Non-existent customer service (this is good or bad, depending on your predilection).
  • Quality problems with its Bellawood line.
  • No installation help. Note: most flooring retailers do not have flooring installers on staff.

Guide Review - Lumber Liquidators Review: Is the Upstart Flooring Retailer Still Good Anymore?

Ah, those salad days of the turn of the millennium! In those late Clinton/early Bush days, it was possible to slip quietly away on a Sunday to an undisclosed location in a light industrial area...and discover flooring gold.

It was called Lumber Liquidators, and few people knew about it. For those in the flooring intelligentsia, Lumber Liquidators was a secret to be guarded: low prices, no-nonsense service, nice selection, and low prices (wait, did we mention that already?).

Now, alas, Lumber Liquidators has fallen. It is big, with over 150 locations across the U.S. It has Ty Pennington and Bob Vila as spokesmen. It sponsors a racing team.

I give a healthy Bronx cheer to Bob Vila and Ty Pennington and the Lumber Liquidators NASCAR Racing Team. Why? Because guess who is subsidizing all of that garbage? You are, Mr. and Ms. Consumer.

Prices have remained reasonable at Lumber Liquidators, but they are nothing to write home about, that's for sure. The perfunctory service is still in place (in my mind, minimal customer service is not necessarily a bad thing, but that's just me). And it's all over the figurative map now, with hardwood, engineered, laminate, bamboo, and cork. What's next? Sheet vinyl? Ceramic tile? I hope not.

If you live near a Lumber Liquidators, it certainly is worth a look. Having your flooring shipped or even delivered locally will push the prices up, but if you can haul it yourself you're in for true discount flooring. Lumber Liquidators will not install your flooring. It should be noted that most flooring retailers do not. Instead, Lumber Liquidators has a list of "preferred" installers you can call (similar to the way other retailers do it).

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User Reviews

Reviews for this section have been closed.

 1 out of 5
Lumber Liquidators, Member cfnordstrom

Worst experience ever. The sales staff was overbearing and arrogant - like Lumber Liquidators was doing me a favor by allowing me to buy from them. We chose Red Oak which was one of the least expensive options, but was only .50 per sq. ft. less than the competition. The quality of the flooring was mixed, lots of blemishes, a really wide variation in color for something called Red Oak; many pieces were almost black rather than uniform in color. And, we ended up pulling out pieces from many of the boxes that filled one whole box with some other kind of wood, it wasn't Oak. The staff went over the blue prints with us so we could calculate how much to order and they encouraged us to over order. It turned out we had way too much product and they refused to take back any of the unopened boxes. This resulted in making the total cost per square foot go way up over the competition, so the concept that Lumber Liquidators is cheaper is a myth. It took 6 plus weeks to get the product, which seemed odd, that they don't stock a popular style and color. And, although the price per sq. ft. on the floor was reasonable, there matching oak stair treads were outrageously expensive. All in all, I will never use Lumber Liquidators again and cannot recommend them to anyone. Go to Lowes or to a floor specialist and negotiate.

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