It’s almost inevitable that homeownership comes with a desire to renovate or do home improvement projects. There is a sort of predictability to it, though. People’s needs and priorities change over time.
One of the most common home improvements is new indoor flooring. In fact, over 5.2 million homeowners replace their current flooring each year. The tricky question is often which kinds of flooring will suit your home best.
However, it’s also good to note you may also need new skirting boards to go with your new flooring. You can find everything from MDF to softwood skirting boards at Skirting World.
If you’ve got a flooring replacement in the planning stages, keep reading for some popular floor options that may work in your home.
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Wooden flooring remains a popular choice for homes across the nation. One of the key reasons for that is that you can find wood in a wide range of colors and grain patterns. That makes matching a wooden floor to the rest of your decorating a relatively straightforward task.
There are two main options when it comes to wooden floors: hardwood flooring and engineered wood flooring. Let’s look at both.
Solid hardwood flooring is a less common choice now than it was even 20 years ago. Part of the reason for that is the short length of time that people own homes. On average, people stay in a home from 8 years to 13 years.
One of the selling points of solid hardwood is that it can last for decades, even up to 100 years with proper care. It’s incredibly durable and you can refinish it over and over again.
Unfortunately, for homeowners who know they’ll sell in five or ten years, the high cost of solid hardwood often looks like an investment they’ll never recoup. Solid hardwood is typically the most expensive flooring option available.
If you plan on staying in your current home, though, it can prove an excellent choice.
Engineered Wood Flooring
For the homeowner that wants wood floors but plans on selling in the medium term, engineered wood flooring is often the next best thing. You get the look and feel of solid hardwood, but at a much lower cost in terms of materials and installation.
While you can refinish engineered wood flooring, you can typically only do it a couple of times. On the plus side, engineered wood flooring installation is typically DIY-friendly.
While wood flooring looks great, it has limitations. Wood flooring doesn’t hold up well in bathrooms, laundry rooms, or basements as a general rule.
In the last 10 years or so, vinyl flooring has seen a surge in popularity. It’s highly durable and water resistant. That makes it an ideal choice for areas like:
- Laundry rooms
You can also get vinyl in almost any pattern of your choice. Want the look of hardwood and the water resistance of vinyl for your bathroom? That can happen.
While pricier, luxury vinyl flooring often provides you with the most versatile patterns and best fade resistance of all vinyl flooring products.
As an added bonus for the DIYers, vinyl flooring is something that you can probably install yourself with the help of some online videos.
Laminate sits in a kind of middle ground between engineered wood flooring and vinyl. It typically consists of a base made from particle board or something similar.
Then, you get a layer with a pattern, often a wood grain and color. A protective plastic layer covers the pattern. For many homeowners, laminate provides an inexpensive alternative to carpeting.
Much like engineered wood flooring, though, laminate often fares poorly when it comes to moisture. This choice can work well in living rooms, bedrooms, hallways, and entryways. You should probably steer clear of it for moisture-intensive areas like bathrooms and basements.
When it comes to flooring, tile is one of the classic materials. Tile provides a number of key benefits. It’s typically water-resistant, assuming the grout was treated correctly. It’s also relatively stain-resistant and scratch-resistant.
While not as durable as wood or vinyl, most tiles will stand up to everyday use without a problem.
The traditional spaces where you use tiles include bathrooms, kitchens, and entryways. After all, who doesn’t want a water and dirt-resistant surface where family members will come in wearing muddy shoes?
If you like tile, though, you can use it anywhere in the house without too many problems. One of the reasons why some homeowners limit their use of tile is the cost. Tile is often second only to hardwood or even on par with hardwood in total cost.
For homeowners on a budget, linoleum is routinely the go-to flooring option. Made from a combination of linseed oil and cork, it’s an inexpensive flooring option that a DIY enthusiast can install.
You can find linoleum in a truly staggering number of patterns and colors. It’s also readily available in home improvement stores, so you won’t need to wait for delivery.
Of course, linoleum comes with some downsides as well. It won’t get you anything in terms of boosting your home’s value.
Its durability is only so-so. If you drop something heavy or sharp on it, there is a good chance that you’ll end up with a permanent dent or cut in the linoleum.
It’s also a poor choice for the wet areas in your home because its water resistance is notoriously bad. So, even if you use it in the living room, you’ll still want an alternative for areas like entryways, bathrooms, and laundry rooms.
Picking Among Popular Floor Options
Choosing among popular floor options is often about your priorities for your home. For the budget-conscious person who just needs something else down on the floor right now, linoleum or laminate is often the best choice.
If you’re looking for a change of pace but haven’t committed yet, you might go with engineered hardwood or luxury vinyl planks. If you’re looking to maximize the value of your home for eventual resale, you’ll probably lean toward solid hardwood and tile.
Looking for more home improvement tips and options? Head over to our Home Improvement section for more posts.