The quality and expertise of family floor store staff is much better. Generally, you are dealing with the owner, family members, or long term employees that are committed to the long term satisfaction of customers and success of the business. They are highly invested in their business, customers, and community, and it is their livelihood and life’s work at stake if they don’t satisfy customers with great service, products, and solutions. Employees at the big box come and go with NO long term commitments. It is just another job for them, not a career. They may be in the flooring department today but worked electrical or gardening yesterday. Can you really expect them to have much flooring expertise or care about what you put in your home? If there is a problem with your floor a few years later do you really expect the same people to still be there to help you?