Published on Wednesday, March 20th, 2019
Flooring is the driving force of influence of a look and feel of an environment. Imagine for a moment, a dark room that made you feel claustrophobic for the first time. Then imagine a kitchen that was so colorful and bright and reflective of the natural light entering in that you felt as if you were stepping into nature. The floor you choose either compliments or clashes, reflects light or darkens, ties everything in or tears everything apart for your lifestyle. Consider this a buyer’s guide to finding the right flooring for the right room every single time.
Being mindful to the foot traffic of each room you are flooring will greatly benefit your future self. For example, some material may be more durable for the higher foot-traffic of an entryway and some may be more comfortable for the relaxation of a living room. Again, this depends on your lifestyle and how you and your family utilize your space. Below is an overview of optimal uses for various flooring types and key for our buyer’s guide: finding the right flooring for the right room:
Vinyl flooring is very durable and stands up well to heavy foot traffic, ideal for owners with pets or kids. It’s also affordable, easy to install, easy to maintain, and comes in a variety of colors and patterns to match your decor. Vinyl fades in sunlight and is easily damaged when something sharp such as heels or cleats are pressed with too much force, and with that being said, also not recommended for outdoor use.
Tile is considered a step up from vinyl aesthetically. It’s made from ceramic, porcelain, or stone and is typically used in spaces such as kitchens and bathrooms being as it’s durable, water resistant, and easy to clean. Installing tile yourself can be easy but doing it well, can be difficult. Tile also holds a cool temperature even if you live in a high-temperature area. Read more about the benefits of tile.
Hardwood flooring is a classic choice for homes. It’s low maintenance, easy to clean, durable, the color doesn’t fade and can be refinished, it’s long lasting and it’s cost effective. Hardwood can be noisy if you’re walking on a second level or higher floor, although this can be prevented with a rug.
Engineered Hardwood flooring is compiled of three layers to allow for expansion and contraction in temperature changes. The top layer is the species of hardwood flooring you wish to see (Oak, Walnut, Maple), the middle and bottom layers are varied species of wood chosen for dimensional stability. Engineered Hardwood can be installed over various types of subfloors such as concrete, and is often affordable depending on your choice of wood for the top layer.
Carpet provides warmth and comfort to your home and is the best option if you have small children to grant safety to falls. Carpet acts as a sound barrier from your electronics to anywhere else in your home and offers premium comfort as compared to hard flooring options. Carpet also requires high maintenance from pet dander, dust mites, dirt, and spills.
Laminate flooring is great at imitating wood flooring. Installation is simple and can be installed over various types of subfloors, it’s flexible to changes in humidity, and is easy to clean. On the other hand, laminate flooring is highly susceptible to moisture damage, must be replaced when damaged, and contains plastic that doesn’t degrade in landfills.
Stone flooring comes in many different forms such as natural stone, travertine, marble, and granite tiles and slabs, each having their own benefits. Overall, stone flooring is eco-friendly, great for any room inside or outside of the house, and most can withstand normal wear and tear. Marble flooring can be susceptible to stains and acid-based products, and travertine scratches and stains easier as well. If you have questions about which stone flooring is the best for you, feel free to contact us.
(Stone flooring prices vary due to size and durability)
Factoring in honestly how much time you’re willing to spend on maintenance is very important. After all, proper maintenance is what ensures you get the most out of your investment. Continue reading to further guide yourself to the right flooring for you.
Consider it easy to clean dirt and spills with vinyl. All you’ll need is a mop, broom, and mildly soapy water. Just do your best to keep it safe from abrasive chemicals. A properly installed and well-maintained vinyl flooring can last well over 20 years.
The tile itself is easy to clean with soapy water although grout is another story. Grout easily attracts dirt, stains and even mold. Be prepared to replace it every 5-10 years, depending on the quality of upkeep. Tile can last 50 years or more.
Hardwood floor is reasonably durable and can stand a decent amount of wear and tear. Regularly sweeping and mopping is the most of what’s needed. If you notice your wood floors have scratches or spots of lost shine, simply sand and refinish. A hardwood floor can last well over 25 years.
Generally, all you need to do to maintain engineered hardwood is to sweep and mop often, as well as immediately clean up any spillage of liquids, as this causes bowing. Engineered Hardwood will last from 20 to 100 years, depending on the thickness of the top veneer.
Carpet simply requires regular vacuuming and when spills happen, clean immediately with a cleaner that is approved by the manufacturer. Believe it or not, the carpet doesn’t last forever! Manufacturers say carpet should last 10 years with proper care.
To properly care for laminate flooring simply sweep and mop regularly to prevent scratching of the finish, and periodically clean the floor with a cleaner specifically made for laminate flooring. The lifespan of laminate flooring can last 15 to 20 years when properly maintained.
If your stone flooring is in a high moisture area, make sure it’s properly caulked to prevent moisture getting to the subfloor. Use mats at every entryway to prevent dirt and dust from getting on your floors. In case dirt and dust make it to your floor, use a soft, dry mop to pick that up. Also, be sure to avoid abrasive cleaners as that can harm the sealant or stain the grout as well as give off a scratched or dull look to your flooring. Stone flooring can last 20-30 years.
There are practically no rules when it comes to being creative with the flooring in your house, but there certainly are elements that clash when you put them together. For example, if you have three different shades of hardwood in the same room, the entire room could appear mismatched. With that being said, there’s nothing wrong with having up to three different types of flooring in one room – but be brave and be bold (after talking with your flooring professional). Imagine an open concept floor plan and having carpet in your living room, stone by the fireplace, and hardwood in the dining room. In this scenario, you want to make sure the contrast is impactful and complimentary to each area of the room and be conscious of the transition from one flooring to the next to really complete the look.
Customizing your space is exciting and should be fun. Do your research and talk to your trusted local flooring experts to support your vision in coming to life.