We bought an old semi-detached house near High Park. It had wall-to-wall carpet, probably installed in the 80s. We had the carpet ripped up and discovered the original hardwood - face-nailed 3/8" rift and quarter-sawn oak. Unfortunately it was in rough shape - the previous owners had put screws through it trying to get the squeaks out. We brought Bill from Smithwood Floors in for a consultation. Even speaking to him on the phone he already had an idea of what was in the house based on the description and the location - his family has been in this business for a long time. He came to see the floors in person and advised they were too worn down to be refinished well, but the stairs could be sanded and refinished, which was consistent with what others had told us. He gave us an estimate for replacing the floor and it was not cheap! However, he gave us a sensible recommendation for period-correct replacement floor that fit the house's style, with slightly wider planks to modernize the floor without looking out of place. He showed us some samples and it did indeed look much better than the pre-finished floors available at the big box stores.
Bill also gave us advice about how to cut costs by removing the existing floor, screwing down the subfloor, and installing the quarter-round ourselves (or hiring someone else to do it), and let his people do what they specialize in. He was happy to do the other work - but he would have to charge more for it than others might. I thought this was professional and gave us options to save some money without compromising on the quality of the finished work. In terms of payment - we paid for the wood after it was delivered to our home, and payment for the work was delivered after the work was done to our satisfaction.
The finished result was beautiful site-finished, custom-stained rift and quarter-sawn 3/4" Northern oak in long planks, with 3 coats of polyurethane. It was done in about 1 1/2 weeks. It cost more than going to Home Depot but we think it was worth it.