This annual list of the best flooring franchises was posted on November 17, 2022.
The main business of flooring franchises is to provide, install, and repair a variety of different floor coverings. This includes the most common choices of carpets, tiles, and wood flooring, as well as alternatives such as laminates, vinyl, and bamboo. This work can be done for commercial, industrial, and residential premises, though franchises are likely to focus on residential work, where they can appeal directly to consumers. Flooring businesses can also provide a variety of specialist flooring services, such as acoustical and sterile flooring.
A significant proportion of the industry’s revenues comes from improving and repairing existing floors. Franchises tend to be focused on providing and installing new floor coverings, but can still tap into this part of the market if they can provide the appropriate skills and materials. Offering repair work may even open up new opportunities to serve customers with more limited budgets.
The flooring installation industry in the US was worth $27.9 billion in 2022, with 118,000 businesses employing 186,000 staff. While it’s a substantial industry, this value represents a 2.2% fall in revenues from 2021. This decline is a change from the previous five years, during which the industry experienced 1.9% annualized growth, increasing faster than the construction industry as a whole. The industry is now growing slower than the economy as a whole. While some forecasts expect 2% growth per year over the next five years, others are less optimistic. The future of flooring is currently uncertain.
This uncertainty is produced by the way that the industry is directly affected by fluctuations in home improvement spending. This has driven the industry’s growth over the past decade. Urbanization has led to a growth in renovations and remodeling projects, in which flooring played a part. Millennials buying their first homes and starting on improvements have also started contributing to growth. As long as construction and renovation work remained strong, so did flooring.
But those watching the wider economy are now predicting a reduction in growth for flooring over the next five years. While the emergence from the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing recovery of the economy has benefited the sector, the Federal Reserve is aiming to stabilize the economy, likely through rises in interest rates. These rises in interest rates will reduce residential construction work, and so reduce the demand for flooring installations.
Volatility in the costs of raw materials can affect this industry. Supply chains disrupted by COVID-19 have not all settled back into their pre-pandemic patterns. International political turmoil and ongoing health restrictions in China are among the factors contributing to wider economic disruption, a pattern that is being felt in parts of the US economy. If the construction or home renovation sectors suffer from financial uncertainty, then so will flooring.
This is still a large and profitable industry, which brings its own complications for franchises. There are several large companies with substantial portions of the flooring market, so up-and-coming franchises have to compete with these. Flooring companies also have to compete for business with professionals such as carpenters, tilers, and concrete contractors, who may provide flooring services as part of a wider range of work. Do-it-yourself (DIY) work also provides competition, as home owners with the time and skills do the work on their own properties, though this can provide some revenues if DIY enthusiasts come to franchises as suppliers for tools, materials, and floor coverings.
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For franchisees going into the flooring industry, there are opportunities to stand out. Manufacturers are developing new types of flooring whose style or durability can be used as unique selling points. A good knowledge of existing floorings also helps. A range of factors shape the flooring that people choose, including durability, maintenance costs, and aesthetics. Current trends are expected to drive a rise in non-resilient floorings such as ceramic tiles and carpets, and especially wood floorings, and leaning into these trends could help a franchised business stand out.
Every building needs floor coverings of some sort, and for all its fluctuations, the construction industry is always going to be a substantial part of the economy. This makes flooring franchises a relatively secure bet in the long term. Whether they’re a profitable choice at this moment is less certain.
Franchise Chatter’s Top Flooring Franchises of 2022
1. Floor Coverings International
Flooring Coverings International wants homeowners to realize there’s a better way to get the right flooring for their home than going to the nearest big-box home improvement retailer. Instead, the company brings the flooring showroom to customers in their homes, which is the most sensible place to be making decisions as important as new flooring.
The mobile showroom van offers 3,400 styles and colors of name-brand flooring products for both residential and commercial use, including carpet, laminate, vinyl, wood, tile, stone, and environmentally friendly options as well. Home consultations are conducted by a professional Design Associate who is not only an expert in the flooring products, but also design to help guide homeowners to the flooring product that’s right for their home.
With its focus on convenience, accessibility, and delivery, Floor Coverings International has achieved among the highest customer satisfaction (Net Promoter Score) ratings in the industry.
The company is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, and became part of the FirstService family of brands in 2003. Founded in 1988 and franchising since 1989, the number of locations has climbed in recent years from 108 in 2012 to the current total of 220 (up from the previously reported total of 178), of which none are company-owned and seven are located outside the US.
2. ProSource Wholesale
ProSource Wholesale provides flooring products at wholesale prices (meaning no retail markups) to homeowners and trade professionals (remodelers, architects, builders, etc.) who become ProSource members for home improvement, remodeling, renovation, or new construction. A ProSource account manager helps coordinate everything on a customer project from start to finish, and the company’s physical locations offer spacious, well-appointed showrooms where customers can explore all the product options.
Flooring types include carpet, carpet tiles, hardwood, laminate, tile, and vinyl. Products beyond flooring include kitchen and bath options for countertops, sinks, cabinets, cabinet hardware, vanities, and showers.
Founded by Alan Greenberg and Howard Brodsky in St. Louis, Missouri in 1990 and franchising since 1991, the number of locations has held relatively steady in recent years and currently stands at 148 (up from the previously reported total of 147), of which three are company-owned and one is located outside the US.
3. Footprints Floors
Footprints Floors is a flooring installation company focused entirely on the customer experience on every project whether it’s flooring installation or flooring restoration. The company can help point homeowners to the most reputable local vendors of high-quality flooring products, and then go on to provide the installation services for whatever product the customer has chosen and purchased. Because the company doesn’t maintain expensive showrooms, their pricing tends to be less than other installation options.
Flooring types they work with include hardwood, LVP/vinyl, laminate, and tile. Additional services include flooring restoration, floor refinishing, stone installation, stair flooring, backsplash and wall tiles, and baseboards.
Founded by Bryan Park in Denver, Colorado in 2008 and franchising since 2013, the number of locations has risen rapidly in recent years from just 12 in 2019 to the current total of 79 (up from the previously reported total of 72), of which one is company-owned and all are located in the US.
4. Tile Liquidators
Tile Liquidators supplies quality flooring products direct to homeowners as well as designers, contractors, and industry professionals at discounted pricing. Flooring and other products on display in their showrooms include carpet, hardwood, laminate, tile (porcelain and ceramic), luxury vinyl, natural stone, glass tile, and countertops.
With savvy buying, the company takes on excess inventory from top-quality suppliers and prices it to sell. Customers can schedule an accurate and professional in-home estimate.
Founded by Doug Disney in Sacramento, California in 2016 and franchising since 2019, the number of locations currently stands at 11 (up from the previously reported total of five), of which none are company-owned and all are located in the US.
An Important Note About Our Methodology
The franchises on this list were ranked according to the number of units in the franchise system. If you are a prospective franchisee searching for franchise opportunities that meet or exceed certain performance benchmarks for sales, profits, and return on investment, please check out this list of America’s Most Lucrative Franchises.