By Fabian Sandler
Hurricane Harvey wreaked havoc on many regions of Houston, including the Humble and Atascocita areas. Some families are still trying to put their lives, and homes, back together. But with winter winding down and spring approaching, residents can look forward better weather.
For those considering new flooring or carpets, Five Star Floors, located in the Kroger shopping center just north of FM 1960 at 19250 West Lake Houston Parkway in Humble, has all the flooring needs that the king and queen of any castle could be looking for.
Small businesses, by their very nature, tend to have limited capacity to offer assistance to their employees who have been affected by natural disasters. Yet, owner Tom Ibrahim and his staff did all they could to assist two employees affected by Hurricane Harvey, one from the Pearland location, and Shelby, the design consultant, at this store. The Pearland employee had flooding in her apartment and her car was totaled.
“Tom, Mike and Sam, the League City manager, did what they could to help her in regards to providing her with the money to get food and clothing should they need any, and did their best to help her in regards to her transportation situation,” Shelby relates.
“In regards to my town home,” she continues, “Tom, Mike and Sam offered to help in any way they could, providing me with money to buy clothes, money for food and whatever else my husband and I could think of in regards to immediate help. I said that I appreciated their offer and that it meant quite a lot to me that they would go that far to help my husband and me. However, my town home was condemned by the state and FEMA so there weren’t any chances for them to offer help in regards to restoring our home. Tom did also offer us the store to sleep in if we had nowhere to go while we were looking for a new place to live.”
As soon as flood waters receded, Tom made his way to the store. “The day we came in, the first thing we did was start calling our customers to see how they fared during Harvey,” Shelby says. “We did our best to call as many people as we could, and called back all of the people who had left questions for us while we were away. Now, for our customers that had come out on the worst end of Harvey, Tom made sure to find a way to ease some of the burden they were now left to deal with. And, Tom was not the only person who found a way to help relieve some of the strain and stress off of those left for ruin from Harvey. The companies we work closely with have come to us with specials and assisting where they can with helping us provide samples for everyone to see. As time has gone on, Tom and I have been doing our best to keep up with everyone including taking our work home with us at times and continuing on there with estimates and quotes.”
Shelby expounds, “Since the hurricane we want to let people know that we don’t do just floors, we also provide service and install for showers, back splash, counter tops, fireplaces, and stair railings. These are some things that we know people are going to need at some point, so instead of not knowing before they come in they will have a heads up on what to look for and some relief in their search.”
There are new additions to Five Star Floors’ product lineup. “Most recently we have added bamboo flooring to our number of engineered hardwood floors we provide,” Shelby elaborates. “Regal Floors has also made a recent introduction to our store and seems to be quite popular engineered hardwood floors that have also come in at a great price range. We have engineered wood that have Veneer layers that range from two millimeter up to about four millimeter thicknesses that range from 3/8″ to 1/2″.
“We still carry vinyl, laminate, travertine, slate, carpet, porcelain and of course the wood-look tile. And, we are still open seven days a week. Tom is doing his estimates five days a week and still makes time to come into the store to help customers personally.”
The store offers such highly recognized flooring as naturally aged flooring and Southern traditions. They carry the biggest names in carpets, including Shaw and Mohawk.
Other lines include Stanton Carpet, which offers a wide array of designs for custom rugs and runners on stairs; and Silk, from Mohawk, a very soft-textured carpet. Silk comes with a 25-year texture retention and lifetime stain warranty.
Tom points out that a growing trend these days is in the use of tile that looks like wood flooring. “People want the durability of tile, but like the look of wood. It really looks very nice,” he states.
Another new trend in flooring is a vinyl that has a plastic core, greatly reducing the possibility of moisture from either at surface level or from the foundation.
Countertops are available in different texture looks, of course, but granite is the most popular. Quartz is also sought after. “Granite is a natural material; those [Quartz and Silestone] are manmade.” Tom explains. The manmade countertops aren’t necessarily less expensive. “Manmade doesn’t have to be maintained as much, doesn’t get stained and withstands more heat. Granite is one of the hardest stones.”
The owner points out that with prices coming down on quartz countertops, they are becoming a better value than ever before.
Five Star Floors has not forgotten one of the most important rooms in the house. “We do a lot of bathroom remodeling,” Tom asserts. “We can do the countertop, the shower, the floors, moving walls.”
The lifeblood of a small business is its customers. Satisfied customers tend to come back. They tend to tell their friends and family. One measure of customer satisfaction is from their feedback. Five Star Floors has a wealth of testimonials from their loyal customers as testament to their customer service.
One such testimonial is from David Bock, “Recently contracted with Five Star Floors Humble location to replace all of the floors in our home. Humble store had wide selection of flooring products to choose from and store personnel were very easy to work with. Pricing was competitive. Installation crew was excellent and we were very pleased with the final product. Our floors look great! We highly recommend Five Star Floors.”
Another testimonial comes from Bob and Jessica Nantz, “We have used Five Star Floors several times pre-Harvey and now post-Harvey. Tom and Shelby have been extremely helpful, responsive and patient in assisting us in selecting our granite, tiles and flooring choices. At Five Star Floors you will receive a great price, quality and service. We have and will continue to recommend Five Star Floors to our family, friends and neighbors”.
Chris Hinton writes, “Since 2012 studio H + H Architects has exclusively worked with Five Star Floors for all their flooring needs. Whether it’s carpet, wood floors, tile, (including floors, backsplashes, showers, etc.), we love the attention to detail that Tom and his crews take to make the project look amazing. No matter how good the design is, it all comes down to the details, and if the tile work on the backsplash is poorly done, it will stand out and the whole job is ruined. Tom, EZ, Arturo and everyone else at Five Star Floors excel and make sure it’s done correctly, and we could not be happier with our long standing partnership. Thanks, guys, for being there for us.”
The store offers financing. It is as easy as filling out an application. In most cases, the credit approval process takes about five minutes. Financing is currently available for eighteen months different interest, but there are other term lengths available during promotion periods.
Tom says they are rated with the Better Business Bureau. “We are excellent. We don’t have any complaints.” Like any small business, Five Star Floors’ BBB rating is very important. With roughly three hundred flooring jobs done each year, that is a lot of satisfied customers.
Visit Five Star Floors’ website at www.5starfloor.com, or come by and see Tom, or Shelby. There are three locations. The Humble store’s office number is 281-913-7235.
The Pearland location is located at 8209 Broadway St. Ste. 105, Pearland, TX 77581. The phone number is 832-736-9595. The fax number is 832-736-9596.
The League City store’s address is 6011 West Main Street Ste. B102, League City, TX 77573. The phone number is 832-905-4161, and the fax number is 281-913-7236.
Showroom hours for all three locations are from 10 am to 7 pm Mondays through Fridays, 10 am to 5 pm on Saturdays, and on Sundays from noon to 5 pm.
Shelby states, “Due to the huge amount of damage left behind and the amount of people and homes that were affected, Tom and I are always doing our best to keep up with everyone’s needs and make sure that we are spending enough time with each person. We’re here to help as much as we can; even going so far as to give some people our cell phone numbers to help them when we’re off the clock.”
Echoing Shelby’s sentiments, Tom believes that if a customer comes to Five Star Floors, he or she will get five star treatment. Their unofficial slogan is, “Imagine the possibilities with Five Star Floors.”
Recovering from the damage inflicted by Hurricane Harvey, or simply sprucing up the homestead in preparation for spring, Five Star Floors is there to make their customers’ lives happier.