When you hire Pete’s Hardwood Floor refinishing, we want your job to go as smoothly as possible.

So we send you a letter before we begin, outlining all the things we’ll need before we start and describing what to expect while we’re in your home.

The three things we need from you before we begin:

Signed bid/estimate contract.

If you’re all fancy and know how to attach an electronic signature, you can even email it to us at peteshardwoodfloors@gmail.com.

Half-down deposit to hold your date.

We have a lovely system that allows you to pay directly from our emailed deposit request invoice.

Or you can mail a check, call in your credit card information, or stop by the store with a wheelbarrow full of pennies.


Returned brochure about lead and renovation.

If your home was built before 1978, even if Bob’s lead test on your floor was negative, we are still required by law to deliver you a copy of the lead explanation pamphlet “Renovate Right.”

We will mail it to you with a nice blank receipt and an addressed return envelope. You can mail it back to us or drop it by our shop in St. Paul, MN in person.

What to expect while we’re in your home:

We’ll call first

Bob will call you a few days before your scheduled start date to arrange access to your property, specify his arrival time, give you his after-hours contact information, and to answer any last-minute questions you may have.

Move all furniture

Yes, we really do need all of the furniture removed from the rooms to be sanded. We strongly encourage you to remove the quarter-round moulding from all the rooms to be sanded as well – it will result in a much neater, cleaner final product. We can do this for you but we need to arrange to do it in advance and we must, alas, charge a fee for this service.

Remove items, art, window treatments

To minimize the dust of floor sanding, Pete’s uses an attached HEPA vacuum system on all of the sanders. While this makes our sanding virtually dust free, we still recommend that you empty all open shelves, take pictures down from walls and take down any removable window treatments in the rooms to be sanded.

You’ll need to reinstall doors

To facilitate both sanding and finish coating we’ll be taking off doors that open into the rooms where we’re working. Because doors must stay off through the final coat, we do not reinstall them.

Electrical panel access

The sanders we use require 220v power, which means that we’ll need to connect our cords directly into your electrical panel. We’ll assume that your panel is in the basement (let us know if it’s not) and request that we have a clear path to the breaker box itself.

Dust goes to your trash hauler

Refinishing your floor produces up to 60 gallons of sanding dust! Our vacuums channel this dust into an automatically sealed heavy-duty plastic bag (almost like a Diaper Genie!) and we’ll leave that sealed bag at the end of your driveway for your trash hauler to remove. Please leave the bag outdoors and well away from all structure until it is picked up.

Water source

If we are using a waterborne finish on your floors, we will need access to an interior water source, preferable a laundry or slop sink.

Send Fido and Fluffy on vacation

Fumes from some floor finishes can be dangerous (and even fatal) for tiny animals such as gerbils and birds. Larger pets, though not at risk from fumes, can be traumatized by the combination of strangers and loud noise that refinishing or installing brings into your home. For these reasons, you should consider sending your pets on a short vacation while we work on your floor. Even pets that aren’t traumatized by sanding should be secured so they don’t leave paw prints in the freshly-laid finish.

Walking instructions

Some finishes take longer to dry than others. We will leave instructions on when you can safely walk on your floors again and when they will be ready for furniture. Even after you have been given the greenlight to replace your furniture, we urge you to wait two weeks before replacing area rugs.

Restroom access

The owner-operators at Pete’s are only human and so respectfully ask permission to use your restroom while we’re working in your home. If there is a restroom that you prefer us to use, please let us know.


One of our biggest concerns for your floor is making sure you know how to take care of it so that our sanding job lasts as long as possible. At the end of every job, Bob leaves a coupon for a free starter bag of floor protectors and a quart of the appropriate spray cleaner so you can get off on ther right foot.

Hardwood floors should last 20 years between sandings, as long as they are well maintained and properly recoated every 5-7 years. We have lots of thoughts and feelings about maintaining hardwood floors and would love to share them with you!

Feel free to call (651-698-5888) or drop in at the shop at 186 Fairview Ave. N in St. Paul, MN if you have questions about hardwood flooring maintenance.

Pete’s Hardwood Floors became a Certified Renovator under the EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule in May of 2010.

This certification is renewed every five years, after the required supplemental training. We are required to carry a copy of our training certificate to every jobsite — we encourage customers to ask to see it.

Under Minnesota statute 326.84 subdivision 1, hardwood flooring contractors are not required to be licensed because they do not provide more than two “special skills.”

If you need further information about licensure, please contact the Commerce Department enforcement division at 651-296-2488 or mn.gov/commerce.

Pete’s Bonus Tips

Front of Pete's Hardwood Floors store in St. Paul, MN

Buy online, or stop by our cute store in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Pete's sells supplies online across the continental U.S., and rents equipment to Minneapolis/St. Paul DIYers. Our store at 186 Fairview Avenue North in St. Paul, MN is at the corner of Fairview and Selby.

It's just the cutest sander rental shop you'll ever visit. Call us at 651-698-5888.

Store hours:

  • Monday - Friday: 8:30-5
  • Saturday: 8:30-3
  • Sunday: Closed