Do you want new flooring and have been looking around for weeks, months, even years, but are confused by the multitude of flooring products and manufacturers out there? If so, you are not alone. One thing is for sure when it comes to flooring in Hawaii — the market is very competitive and there are numerous choices for products and installers. Then you have salespeople, many of whom do not have good product knowledge, that come at you with confusing facts, figures and pressure to buy. It’s enough to make a person say, “I’ll stick with my 20 year-old carpet for a little longer.”

But there is help. If you are building new, remodeling or just freshening up, Shirley Pai Hilton of Kahala Pacific Floors would like to help you with some unbiased information on products and installation so that you can make the right choice for the person that matters here — you.


According to Hilton, the first thing to remember is to always buy quality in your price range. The old adage of getting what you pay for applies doubly in a competitive market. Vendors will try to get your attention and money by offering an amazingly low price, but that’s because they didn’t pay much for it either.

What is usually sacrificed is hardiness and longevity. What good does it do if you have to buy another floor in just a few years? No one is saying to purchase a real wood floor when you can’t afford it, but do shop for a good quality laminate to give you years of satisfaction. Always look for a good warranty on materials, 25 years for home use should be readily available.


Another piece of advice from Hilton is to always look for integrity with the company you are dealing with. You may have a written contract, but good customer service is usually not one of the listed contractual obligations. Probably the best way to find a good flooring company or product is to ask your friends, relatives and neighbors about their own experiences and endorsements. When you narrow it down, look into who the owner is and what his or her background is. Ask the company if they can provide a list of references. and other consumer websites are also good sources of information. You can also do your own sleuthing with a quick check on Google.


It is also interesting to note that good, knowledgeable sales people are a direct reflection of the company’s openness and attention to detail. A salesperson should be able to offer you good information that will help you make an informed decision. Always walk away from high pressure, badgering salespeople who call or text you incessantly. They definitely don’t have your best interests at heart.

And Hilton said that even before you venture out into the Hawaii flooring forest, get a basic education by attending her Wood and Stone Flooring 101 seminar, now held monthly due to popular demand. The 90-minute session has been attended by hundreds of Hawaii consumers who always talk about how much they enjoyed it and how much they learned.

Kahala Pacific Floors’ next seminar will be held on Saturday, April 20, at 10 a.m. at the showroom located at 926 Kohou St. Call 847-7711 to reserve a seat.

contact // 847-7711
address // 926 Kohou St.