Today Ted speaks with Shannon Johnstone of Strong Roots Flooring in Kelowna BC. Shannon and her husband run their business with the model to save old flooring by refinishing it to look modern. In their store, they focus on educating customers on sustainable flooring options for every budget.

While their business always focused on refinishing, the shift towards sustainability is new and the smallest choices have had the biggest impact. From using the latest technology and low VOC products to a partnership to replant the worlds forests, Shannon and her husband are on a mission. For every 100 square feet of flooring, they’re able to refinish, they partner with a company to plant 10 trees around the world. This initiative has allowed them to not only plant more trees but to save more old floors from entering landfills.

This episode is a lesson on the environment, the choices we can make, and where the industry is headed if we can take the smallest steps.


Topics Discussed

  • [2:00] The start of Strong Roots Flooring
  • [5:30] It’s tough to find good people
  • [8:00] Most floors can be refinished
  • [8:40] How to give old floors new personality
  • [12:00] How has technology changed refinishing?
  • [16:00] Where is the business now vs. when you started?
  • [19:40] Tree planting initiative
  • [30:15] Trying to educate the public on sustainable flooring
  • [35:30] Differences in wood sources and products
  • [40:20] How to be sustainable and thoughtful with hardwood
  • [41:30] Competition in the marketplace
  • [43:55] What keeps you up at night?
  • [46:45] Consideration for the environment is becoming popular

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Key Quotes from Episode

  • We won’t do oil finished anymore. We have been requested, but just for the sake of our guys, we won’t because it’s so toxic.
  • We started it with just our refinishing to encourage our customers into refinishing rather than a new floor, but we now actually do it for just per a hundred square feet of flooring period. But we’ll send a report so if we have a refinishing client, I send them an email at the beginning of the following month and I’ll tell them how many trees they planted and then I’ll tell them how many they saved from the landfill and then how many they saved from harvest. Because it’s one thing to plant trees but if you’re using what you have, if you’re a thousand square feet of flooring, you’ve saved about ten trees from being harvested and you’ve saved another ten trees that were already harvested because they’re in your floor from going into a landfill.
  • So I have a saying, if you don’t like scratches, don’t get hardwood. And if you don’t like cracks, don’t get concrete.


Strong Roots Flooring Inc

We are a local family-owned flooring store, and since 2006, we have served Kelowna and the Okanagan with quality flooring, hardwood refinishing and custom wood creations.
Website: Strongroots.ca

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