Install a Laminate Floor to Rent Your Home with Confidence

WASHINGTON, DC – Selling your home at an acceptable price is a sticky proposition in the current economy, and as a result, more and more property owners are becoming landlords.

In fact, according to Floor Covering Weekly, the number of renter households has increased by 3.7 million in the last five years, while the number of owner households has dropped by 1.3 million over the same period.

Renting out your home can be an attractive option for the homeowner – and a good opportunity for home improvements.

One of the most dramatic ways to give your home a makeover is with a beautiful laminate floor. Carpet can show wear and stains, and replacing it with laminate flooring – which can realistically replicate wood and stone looks – can transform a room. That makes for a more attractive home, which justifies renting it out at a premium price.

“Whether you plan to be a long-term landlord, or if you’re just renting your home until the economy improves enough to put it on the market, laminate flooring can add value to your home,” says Bill Dearing, president of the North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA). “A new laminate floor gives a room a fresh look, and it’s easy to clean and maintain.”

As you face the prospect of renting your home, you can rest assured that laminate flooring – known for its high durability – will stand up to even the most active renters. As any landlord will attest, you can’t be certain how careful renters will be in maintaining your home, so the fact that laminate flooring is stain, fade and scratch resistant gives the property owner peace of mind.

Installing laminate flooring also saves the homeowner time and money. It’s easy to install, so laminate flooring is a quick home improvement endeavor regardless of whether you plan to do it before putting your house up for rent or if you plan to turn it around while renters are in the house. And affordable laminate flooring is one of the best investments you can make with your decorating dollar.

You can be confident you’re installing quality laminate flooring by looking for the NALFA Certification Seal when making your purchase. The seal is testament that the product has performed well in rigorous tests conducted by independent, third-party laboratories. Those tests include everything from how well the flooring resists water, light and stains to whether it can be damaged when a heavy object is dropped. Find a complete list of NALFA-certified products at www.nalfa.com.

So become a landlord with confidence with a beautiful, durable, low-maintenance laminate floor.

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2012 NALFA Inspector Class

NALFA announces the next Inspector Certification class! January 27, 2012 in Las Vegas, NV. Registration is open now. Contact Teiya Eubanks for class information and to register. teubanks@kmtcreative.com or 423.316.1566

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NALFA Offers Inspector Certification Class on January 27, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – After an impressive debut of its new curriculum in 2011, the North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA) will kick off its second year of inspector certification classes with a one-day course held Friday, January 27, in conjunction with Surfaces 2012 in Las Vegas, Nev.

The class is the first course dedicated exclusively to laminate flooring and promoted by the largest North American laminate flooring manufacturers.

The comprehensive curriculum for the NALFA inspector certification class includes NALFA history, a “Laminate 101” course, installation requirements, inspection tools and standards, product defect review, and inspection reporting and process. The class fee is $350.

Pre-qualifying conditions include either a minimum of three years’ experience as an inspector, being a NALFA-certified installer with a current certification, or being certified by another nationally recognized inspection organization.

Certification offers increased credibility as a laminate flooring inspector and helps participants to become a preferred choice for the best laminate flooring producers in North America as well as their distributors and retailers. Certification also provides the business exposure of being listed on the NALFA website as a certified inspector and the benefit of networking with the best inspectors in the industry. Finally, certified inspectors receive privileged access to the technical support services of NALFA members and are constantly updated about technical innovations in the laminate flooring field.

Additional dates for NALFA inspector certification classes will be announced during Surfaces 2012, scheduled for January 24-26 in Las Vegas.

Space is filling fast, so to register or for more information, visit the NALFA website at www.nalfa.com or contact Teiya Eubanks at (423) 316-1566 or teubanks@kmtcreative.com.

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Congratulations to the 2011 Lammy Nominees!

2011 LAMMY Award Nominees Announced

The North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA) is pleased to announce the nominees for the 2011 LAMMY Awards, which are given annually to companies and individuals for exceptional contributions to the laminate flooring industry.

“We created the LAMMY Awards to recognize excellence within this continuously changing and growing segment,” says Bill Dearing, president of NALFA. “The LAMMY Awards are a great way for NALFA to formally recognize companies and individuals for their efforts within the industry and to encourage others to do the same.”

The NALFA Board of Directors anonymously nominates individuals and organizations for each category. The nominees are compiled, listed on ballots and sent for voting to NALFA members as well as the editors of Floor Covering Installer, Floor Covering News, Floor Covering Weekly, Floor Focus and National Floor Trends. NALFA presented the first LAMMY Awards in 2007.

The 2011 LAMMY Award winners will be announced January 25, 2012, in Las Vegas.

The nominees are:

Member of the Year
Jean Briere, Shaw Industries
Jane Winters, Unilin

Associate Member of the Year
Jack Boesch, MP Global Products
Marco Seitner, SELIT
David Pritchard, Pak-lite
Brent Sholl, Sealed Air Corporation

Distributor/Retailer of the Year
Bolick Distributors
B.R. Funston
R.A. Siegel

Regular Member Company of the Year
Pergo
Unilin/Mohawk

Associate Member Company of the Year
Pak-lite
Pregis

Flooring Dealer of the Year
Carpet Plus, Charlottesville, Va.
Floor Covering Association, Shorewood, Ill.

About NALFA

The North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA) was formed in 1997 by U.S. and Canadian manufacturers and importers of Laminate Flooring. Since its inception, NALFA has been dedicated to creating voluntary product performance standards for Laminate Flooring in North America. For more information, visit www.nalfa.com.

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NALFA certifies eco-friendly laminates

NALFA President Bill Dearing discusses the green attributes of laminate flooring and NALFA certification as a guest columnist in the 2011 FCW Green Issue. Visit fcw1.com to read the full article.

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Laminate – Beyond the kitchen

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WASHINGTON, DC – High-heel shoes walk quickly across the kitchen floor on the way to the garage and another day’s work. Later, as dinner is being prepared, a jar of spaghetti sauce tumbles off the counter, splattering a red mess across the floor. Dents? None. Stains? Relax. Laminate flooring can take it. In fact, it would be difficult to find a flooring product that is more durable than laminate.

That’s why consumers are increasingly turning to laminate flooring as their choice throughout the home. And laminate flooring is showing up beyond the kitchen – in entry halls, family rooms, living rooms, and dining rooms.

“Laminate flooring started in the kitchen,” says Bill Dearing, president of the North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA). “Over the years, its popularity has grown so that it’s now found in every room in the house.”

Indeed, sales of laminate flooring are growing steadily, according to a recently released Global Industry Analysts report, which says that the growth is driven by escalation in new home construction as well as residential remodeling.

“Laminate (flooring) with close resemblance to wood and advantageous features of durability, beauty and novel designs capable of replicating granite and stone are creating myriad decorating possibilities for residential and commercial interiors,” according to Global Industry Analysts.

Furthermore, home improvements using laminate flooring are motivated by ease of installation, simple upkeep, long-term durability, and increasingly innovative product designs, which are quickly making laminate floors one of the most popular and affordable options throughout the home.

Design, in fact, is often what initially catches the homeowner’s eye. Today’s laminate flooring is setting new standards in realism – especially in high-end wood designs. Laminate floorcovering manufacturers are now replicating the subtle details of real wood such as saw marks, wire brushing and even nail and worm holes.

Especially popular in family rooms are rustic laminate looks. Micro beveling gives the laminate the authentic appearance of natural grooves – but none of the wear and tear of other flooring products.
Other laminate flooring designs create realism with texture and embossing. But, Dearing says, “Laminate flooring has never tried to be an imitation of anything else and today, it comes in a variety of rich designs, including popular wood-based styles.”

Those designs are a result of a unique lamination process. Laminate flooring is comprised of a hybrid of materials fused together through that lamination process. Between a tough protective top layer and a high-density fiberboard core is a decorative layer, which provides a high-definition, highly detailed image – realistically simulating everything from hardwood to marble to stone. And when homeowners find a design they like, Dearing says, they generally use that laminate flooring throughout the home. That’s especially true of adjoining rooms such as living and dining rooms.

So look beyond the kitchen when you’re selecting laminate flooring for your home. “When it comes to design options,” Dearing concludes, “there’s no shortage with laminate floors.”

The North American Laminate Flooring Association (NALFA) was formed in 1997 by U.S. and Canadian manufacturers and importers of laminate flooring. Since its inception, NALFA has been dedicated to creating voluntary product performance standards for laminate flooring in North America. For more information, visit www.nalfa.com.

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Global Laminate Market Growing

Click the link below to review the article in SFGate on the recent global report on laminate flooring.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/10/04/prweb8831386.DTL&ao=2

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Congratulations to NALFA Certified Inspectors!

NALFA continues to receive rave reviews for the Inspector Certification Class. The latest classes, held in Vancouver, B.C. August 25th & 26th, graduated 33 New NALFA Certified Inspectors. To date, NALFA has certified 101 Inspectors across North America!

Take a look at our class photos. Congratulations to each of you on your new certification!

Classes have been held in:

Las Vegas, NV
Dallas, TX
Anaheim, CA
Raleigh, NC
Salem, NJ
Toronto, Ontario
Vancouver, B.C.

The remaining 2011 Inspector Certification Class calendar is as follows:

9/16 – Charleston, SC
10/13 – Chicago, IL
11/11 – Calhoun, GA

2012 class dates to be announced soon. Contact Teiya Eubanks at 423-316-1566 for pricing and registration information. (email teubanks@kmtcreative.com)

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Wood and Panel Interview with Bill Dearing

NALFA President Bill Dearing was interviewed by Wood and Panel Magazine for the cover story “Laminate Flooring the fascinating underlay”. Visit the woodandpanel.us website for the full story.

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Green or greenwashing? The truth about laminate flooring.

by Bill Dearing, President, NALFA

Visit any flooring department today and you’ll see a plethora of green colored signage—in fact, you have to look hard to find any display that doesn’t indicate, at the bare minimum, that a product will not cause adverse environmental impact. Some claims even make promises of saving the planet. So how does a consumer recognize overstating and greenwashing? What do the claims really mean? Is laminate flooring really “green”?

To answer the question about laminate flooring’s “greenness”, we’ll focus only on our NALFA Regular and Associate Member’s products — and with good reason. Unless a product is tested to NALFA standards, it cannot make claims about its relative performance to these standards with any certainty.

The first concerns of a shopper usually are the features and benefits, with sustainability now at the top of the list. When laminate flooring was introduced to North America in 1993, it was significantly ahead of most other flooring in environmental sustainability. It originated in Sweden who was striving towards “green” at least eight years before sustainability hit the average North American’s radar screen. The manufacturing process was extremely efficient in its time in order to make prices competitive, which in turn kept sourcing and production steps at a minimum. Finally, the product’s life cycle ended with further recycling of most of its components, or used as approved heating fuel or farming additives.

The Scandinavian consumer considered environmental recognition important and when a company was awarded the Scandinavian Green Swan for example, its logo was extensively promoted. Indoor air quality was linked to environmental concerns and once again, laminate flooring came through. Reported as superior to other flooring by various country’s health departments in this regard, Laminate Flooring rapidly replaced other options in these countries. By the way, “Laminate” refers to the tiniest component of a NALFA Member’s product which is the environmentally friendly protective cover that you can’t see yet gives well made Laminate Flooring its distinctive benefits of Wear, Fade and Stain.

NALFA Certified Laminate Flooring continues this tradition. For example, all of our Members’ products are CARB compliant. We invite anyone to visit www.nalfa.com for a complete update of our Green Standard initiative as well as a list of our Members, both Regular and Associate. From there, you may further link to our member’s sites where you will find that most have been awarded significant environmental recognition. A core NALFA belief is in our transparency; no smoke and mirrors, and never any deceptive statements.

It takes an effort for a company to claim genuine NALFA Certification and anyone concerned with sustainability (consumers, architects, dealers, installers, etc.) can visit our site and be directed easily to the standards that back up our NALFA Certification process. The NALFA certification seal, which gives a shopper and dealer assurance of quality and suitability, is proudly displayed by every NALFA member. And yes, it is “green”.

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