There’s a little tidbit about Andy Dunning that will leave you floored.
“Oh, I’ve probably worked on the floors of nearly every house right in this area,” says the owner and CEO of American Wood Flooring, a fixture on Bruce B. Downs (BBD) Blvd. in Wesley Chapel (just north of the county line) for more than a dozen years.
Dunning says he has added a few more homes during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“With more people home, either just in general because of Covid or because they’re working from home for the foreseeable future, lots of them are spending money they would use on, say, a vacation they can’t go on,” says Dunning. “They are re-doing the floors in their homes that they might have been putting off.”
It sounds like this may be a good time for an upgrade, and something many homeowners have picked up on. And, that is the silver lining of the pandemic for American Wood Flooring. “Despite all that’s happened this year,” Dunning says, “it’s been a record year for us.”
While styles change from year to year, Dunning says LVP, or Luxury Vinyl Plank flooring, has been the most popular choice in 2020: “The resiliency and different looks of LVPs have just taken over everything.”
One big reason — in a state where it rains nearly all year, this type of flooring is 100-percent waterproof.
“Kind of a necessity around here, don’t you think?,” Dunning asks.
In addition to keeping things dry, LVP is durable, in that it’s pet-proof and even also dent-proof. That’s because LVP floors may look like wood, but they aren’t. Dunning says that LVP floor panels are made from a PVC-type material and their tight lock-and-fold system is what keeps the moisture out, even from the attached padding underneath that is made from an anti-microbial melamine material.
The LVP also is made with a stone-composite material, which is what Dunning says makes it 100-percent dent-proof, adding that is a change from when LVPs first arrived on the scene and were made from a wood composite material. That material, however, was susceptible to dents, especially from heavier appliances like refrigerators or washing machines.
“They’re always coming out with newer, more innovative ways to keep the product getting better and better,” Dunning says. “The SPC (Stone Plastic Composite) is way better than the WPC (Wood Plastic Composite) and that was the knock on laminates when they first came out.”
American Wood Flooring doesn’t just sell and install LVPs, even though Dunning says that’s his best seller. They will still put down wood floors, as well as carpet, tile and laminate. In fact, Dunning says tile is making a comeback of sorts, while noting that many customers don’t know that American Wood Flooring also can install backsplashes.
“These things go in cycles, if you ask me,” Dunning says.
And, whenever the cycle changes, American Wood Flooring isn’t without its repeat customers.
“We’ve probably used them 6-7 times over the years,” Wesley Chapel resident Patrick Murphy says. “They did our home and then another home that was a rental, and it had to be totally redone once (the tenant) moved out. (Andy) replaced probably 2,500 square feet of floor.”
New Tampa resident Janet Noblett agrees. She had American Wood Flooring rip out the carpet in her master bedroom and the work was so good, well, she decided to do the three other bedrooms.
“About a year after we did that, I looked at my husband and said, ‘You know this has to happen now,’ so we went right back to Andy,” Noblett says. “I was really pleased, and I’m the type of person that I usually don’t just choose one company. I had four companies come out and show me different types and pricing and procedures, and grilled them to death. I just felt he really knew his stuff and was the most professional and on time! A lot of times, people don’t show up or are late — you want to give them your money, but they don’t show up. He showed right up. I would absolutely recommend (AWF) to anyone in my neighborhood or community because I know they will do the best job.”
A full recommendation also comes from Murphy, who says he appreciates Dunning’s fair and honest approach.
“(Andy)’s just straightforward with cost and the (installers) have been respectful and helpful and solid,’’ Murphy says. “The few times we had a problem with the outcome, they fixed it quickly, so they stand by the work…I have recommended Andy several times, even to my parents.”
Dunning notes that his installers are all AWF employees and not outside contractors, “So, we make sure your job is done right!”
Despite some restrictions still put in place on stores, Dunning says that his storefront — in the SuperTarget-anchored Northwood Plaza at the corner of BBD and County Line Rd. — continues to be busy.
“Probably even busier now, to be honest,” he says.
That’s because when it comes to purchasing flooring, customers still want to see and touch samples, not just look at them online.
“They want to see the colors and the material with their eyes and hands,” Dunning says. “This isn’t like buying a shirt that’s $20 and if you don’t like it, oh well. This is a little bit more expensive, a little bit more permanent.”
Kind of like American Wood Flooring in the Wesley Chapel community. Certainly that’s what Dunning has planned.
“We’ll be here — we’re not going anywhere and, honestly, we’re busy,” he says. “Every month this year has been a record month, so I’m sure we’ll be doing plenty more homes even next year.”
American Wood Flooring offers free in-home estimates and offers a lifetime warranty on any install. Dunning makes sure to use emerging technologies in the industry and offers first-rate service at premium pricing, while still offering a full range of traditional flooring options.
The company also offers Bloomin’ Brands gift cards (good at Outback, Bonefish and Carrabba’s) to clients who refer friends and family.
American Wood Flooring’s Wesley Chapel showroom is located at 1285 BBD Blvd. and is open Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.-6 p.m., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Sat., and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. on Sun. For more info, visit FlooringforFlorida.com or call (813) 991-7999.