It can be difficult to pick the right type of flooring that you need and it is usually a choice you have to live with for a long time. Hardwood, laminate, tiles and carpet are the most popular choices of flooring to chose from. Each has its advantages and disadvantages and it is important to consider all aspects before you decide on the flooring that is right for you. The primary aspects to consider are budget, practicality, maintenance and aesthetics.
Cost and Maintenance
When it comes to cost, hardwood floors outrank all other types of flooring. Although there are different varieties of hardwood, most of them are expensive. Engineered hardwood might be cheaper and easier to maintain, so you could consider that as an option. Tiles and laminates are usually neck to neck in the cost department as there are various grades of tiles and laminates available at variable costs. When it comes to maintenance, each has its own positive and negative sides. While light colored tiles may be difficult to clean, damaged laminates need to be replaced completely. Although laminates are fairly durable, you will need to replace them in 10 years or so. Tiles, on the other hand, are tougher and you can replace damaged tiles without having to take the entire flooring apart. Carpet is the cheapest option, even with the professional cleaning costs that it might require from time to time.
Practicality and Durability
Hardwood had been the preferred choice for homes for a number of reasons. It has a warm, natural feel, looks elegant and lasts years. But if you live in a humid climate, maintaining the hardwood flooring is a challenge. Hardwood is expensive and needs a lot of care which is not possible for many. Engineered floors however have made it easier, both on the pocket and the effort. Tiling needs minimal maintenance and is a more sterile choice. The sleek surface does not harbor any allergens, moisture or pests. Hence, there’s no need to think twice before tiling a bathroom. However, the cold underfoot is not ideal in cold places. Laminates too need low maintenance hassles, but with a shorter lifetime. Carpets, on the other hand, are demanding and need constant vacuuming and shampooing to keep in good health.
Looks and Aesthetic
Hardwood floors have a distinct elegance but then that depends on personal choice as well, especially when maintenance is such a big task. Laminates, on the other hand, can look a little cheap, although there are many premium looking laminates that are circling the markets. Available in a range of styles and patterns, the tiles can create a clinically white as well as a colorful warm look. You can even experiment a lot with different styles, colors and textures of carpets.
The type of flooring you choose depends on multiple factors and in the end it is only you who can make the final choice based on the facts.