There are more flooring choices than ever before, all offering a combination of style and purpose. However, all the choices may leave you confused about what option will best suit your specific need. If you need help choosing the right flooring, keep reading to understand many of the considerations to take into account when deciding on flooring. As always, your friendly Curtis Lumber salesperson can also assist you with the perfect flooring choices.
The most important aspect of choosing a new floor is determining the look you want to achieve. Are you looking for a modest elegance, or a warm family feel? The flooring you choose will make a big difference in how you use and decorate your room.
Solid wood flooring has become the standard choice for most homeowners and is continuing to grow in popularity. With its attractive appearance and natural warmth, a beautiful wood floor can enliven a drab room, enhance any architectural style, complement furniture and design schemes, and add value to any home.
Wood flooring comes in a variety of widths and grades to give you the “look” you want. Based on the size of your room, you may want to use a wider plank to achieve a more dramatic look or a very narrow plank to give it a very textured character. You also need to determine whether or not you want a floor with minimal or substantial color variation and character. It is also important to consider the other woods you may have in your home in order to match your floor and how they will blend or compliment your new flooring.
With today’s engineered wood, which is less costly than solid-wood planks, you may be able to afford an exotic wood species, such as Brazilian walnut or tigerwood, both of which tend to be more scratch- and dent-resistant than oak or maple. A great option for living rooms and bedrooms.
Luxury vinyl, the most popular type of resilient flooring, is durable, low-maintenance, and easy on the budget. Vinyl floor has more depth and texture today than it did a generation ago. Luxury vinyl tiles, which tend to imitate stone and luxury vinyl planks, which mimic wood, deliver a realistic look. They can even be laid in the pattern of your choice, just like the real thing. Here is a sampling of the looks that can be achieved:
- Realistic looking wood species– Everything from traditional Oak, Walnut and Birch to true-to-life exotic woods with dramatic grain patterns
- Texture and finishing effects– Weathered white-washing, liming and rough-hewn reclaimed looks
- Classic stone styles– Marble, slate and travertine tiles and concrete-inspire planks
For those trying to achieve the look of wood or stone on a budget, laminate flooring is a popular option. Today’s laminate floors replicate the natural beauty of wood or stone while being durable and attractive at a fraction of the price of a hardwood floor. For the most convincing look of real wood, choose a product with wide planks that simulate individual floorboards.
How will your floor be used? Will it be installed in a high traffic area or in a rarely used dining room? After you have determined what you want your flooring to look like, you should take into consideration the environment in which it will be expected to perform.
Solid and Engineered Hardwood flooring can last a lifetime if properly maintained. The structural integrity of the floor does not degrade. It is important to remember that solid hardwood scratches and may become damaged by pooled liquids. Prefinished flooring typically carries a warranty and will resist scratches better than site-finished floors. No matter the finish, this flooring will need to be resurfaced every 15-25 years.
Designed to endure the busiest homes, Luxury Vinyl is scratch, stain and wear resistant, and 100% waterproof. Many luxury vinyl flooring products have a lifetime warranty, while others have 30-year or 15-year warranties.
Laminate flooring, a manufactured product, will perform differently. The floor may wear, fade, stain, and lose its resistance to moisture after 20-30 years. Pooled liquids will damage this flooring, however unlike wood flooring, it is very scratch resistant. Because of this characteristic, it is commonly used in homes with pets.