Even if you step all over them, your house’s floor is a big part of what makes it a home. The type of flooring you choose for your house can make it appear warm, elegant, or down for business. Weigh your options for your floors because the flooring can last for more than your lifetime.
Most homes have wooden flooring – and not just because of tradition. While more modern materials are available for floors, wood is still the most popular choice because of aesthetics, practicality, convenience, warmth, and nostalgia. Wooden floors make a house feel more like home. They have a warmer and more intimate feel than stone or ceramics. Houses with wooden flooring also demand higher property values than those without, as demand for alternative flooring options are rare.
Traditional hardwood is the most in-demand, but engineered wood is also growing in popularity. Engineered wood retains the appearance and strength of hardwood. It is made of several layers of wood and is less prone to warping or swelling. Engineered wood can cost half the cost of solid wood,and installation can be less expensive. Engineered maple wood flooring is particularly popular.
However, you can also opt for hickory, oak, beech, or ash. Working with wood allows you to easily add layers of insulation underneath or repair particular sections in case of damage. Engineered wood can last up to 30 years,and installation (for the entire house) typically requires a mere 1-4 days.
Stone or Ceramic Tiles
Houses with modern designs will typically have stone or ceramic flooring. Stone tiles exude the appearance of fast-paced living and efficiency and provide a more hygienic environment. Kitchens of professional cooks and bakers will most likely have stone or ceramic floors. Stone tiles are waterproof and fireproof and are less likely to be damaged compared to traditional wooden flooring. Stone or ceramic tiles are often used to assert professionalism and hygiene, albeit sacrificing the warmth associated with a home.
Of course, most homes will use stone or ceramic tiles in particular areas – most notably the kitchens and bathrooms – while using wood for the rest of the house. Tiles come in various shapes and sizes. They can be of almost any color you want and can appear as any stone. You can even opt for stone tiles with the appearance of wood. However, a single step will instantly reveal the deception. Stone and ceramic tile flooring are easy to clean and need very little maintenance. Your usual cleaning regimen should be enough to keep your floors clean, and tile grouts can last 10-12 years before requiring replacement.
The smooth and shiny appearance of polished concrete is usually more popular in offices and malls. However, it is also used in more affluent homes. Polished concrete, or even gypsum concrete flooring can appear professional or majestic, depending on how it is applied. The seamless floors create an aura of etherealness as well as a clear mark of opulence. Concrete is also a green building material and most environmentalists advocate its use. Like stone or ceramic tiles, polished concrete is waterproof and fireproof.
It requires very little maintenance and has none of the grout lines of tiles. Concrete floors are all but impervious to damage. But even if you manage to damage it (with a falling hammer or some similar kind of accident), it can still be repaired quite easily. Polished concrete works best with modern stone houses or houses that want to emphasize lighting.
Vinyl comes in tiles and sheets and is the most affordable flooring option. Of course, vinyl needs an existing flat surface to adhere to, limiting its use downstairs (since the flooring upstairs will likely be constructed with wood). Vinyl is easy to clean and durable, particularly ones with 8mm thickness. It can be made to appear as almost anything (wood, stone, or complex designs), and you can even opt for tiles that require grouting to increase its semblance to stone tiles.
Vinyl is easy to apply and remove, requiring a day or two for professionals or maybe more if you do it independently. Unfortunately, vinyl floors can make your house’s property value drop, as most buyers consider it to be drab and cheap.
Choosing the right flooring for your home is not a decision you can make lightly. Consider your options (whether wood, stone, or ceramic tiles, polished concrete, or vinyl) and go for the right materials that fit your vision of how you want your home to be.
This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.