The type of flooring in your home can make a significant difference in both its appearance and its value. As such, picking flooring materials is widely considered one of the most challenging tasks when designing a home’s interior.
Learning about your options before making this decision can ensure you will enjoy your floors for years to come. After determining the intentions for each space, wise homeowners will carefully consider the characteristics of each option before making their selection.
Carpet has long been a favorite go-to flooring material. It is soft, comfortable, and comes in a range of colors and patterns. As perhaps the most versatile flooring option, it is a very popular choice, and can also be very economical.
The ability of carpet to express multiple patterns, colors, and textures makes it an ideal decorating option as the right choice can easily give a customized look. Carpet is also designed to lend warmth and dryness; it creates a sense of coziness while helping alleviate noise. It even acts as insulation by retaining warm air.
A major disadvantage is that carpet retains stains easily. This can make it costly and difficult to clean, especially when placed in high-traffic areas. Also, low-quality carpet will tend to wear out easily.
Hardwood flooring is known for its timeless beauty and durability. It will easily increase your home’s value while adding warmth and character, and its resilience will add years of longevity to your interior. If your home is going on the market, installing hardwood floors is an improvement that will actually be a selling-point. Another advantage is that, even if hardwood gets old and worn, it can be refinished to look practically new.
Hardwood is also one of the more expensive options, so it is wise to carefully consider its placement. Using it in areas prone to moisture-exposure, like your kitchen or your foyer, has mixed blessings. Though it gives an inviting appearance, hardwood is sensitive to dampness, so warping may become a problem. It may even shrink or expand, depending on seasonal and temperature changes.
Porcelain or Ceramic Tile
Porcelain or ceramic tile may be the perfect solution for your home, especially for high-traffic areas. This type of flooring is extremely resilient, and even if it is damaged, a tile can be replaced fairly easily. It is very stain-resistant, and can also express a wide variety of colors, which is perfect for creating a room’s personality.
A disadvantage is that tiled floors tend to cause an echoing effect, making rooms noisy. Tiles can also become slippery when liquids are spilled on them, and their grout can attract stains and be difficult to clean. In addition, their hard, rigid properties make them not suitable for comfortable living areas.
Commonly known as the cheap alternative to wood and tile, laminate is a very durable, flexible material that rarely fades. It is generally resistant to stains and water, is easy to clean, and is extremely inexpensive. It is also relatively easy to install; it can simply be glued or nailed over a subfloor.
While laminate flooring has its advantages, it doesn’t generally appeal to homebuyers. If it discolors, it’s not possible to rehabilitate or refinish the material. Additionally, laminate’s soft composition means sharp objects can easily leave gouges, which are extremely difficult to repair.
Although choosing a floor is a big decision, it doesn’t have to be stressful. You can always mix and match floorings to demarcate specific areas in your home. Focus on the function of each room and the image you are trying to create, and the possibilities will be endless.