Considering the costs, benefits and the downsides to each type of flooring before you commit is wise. Alongside these considerations your style, budget and lifestyle are all factors that should be thought about when choosing your flooring. Some of the most popular types of flooring, their pros and cons, and the rooms for which they are best suited are listed here:
Costs: Depending on the type of hardwoods you go with; this is not necessarily a cheap option. Engineered wood will cost you a little less. On top of purchasing the wood you will need to also pay for installation.
Pros: Hardwoods are a timeless choice. They look nice and have a great resale value. They are easy to clean and maintain and usually only require minimal mopping or vacuuming.
Cons: The cost is the largest drawback. Hardwoods are loud to walk on and are not acoustically friendly. Real hardwoods also need refinishing occasionally in high-traffic areas. Be careful, when selecting a wood product. Water doesn’t play well with these materials; one big water-line leak can cause serious and expensive damage.
Best Rooms: The best place to put hardwoods is in the living areas. It looks good and is stylish. You can also use a rug to muffle the noise a bit.
Costs: There are many different types, styles and colours to tile. This can affect the price you pay. While you can lay tile yourself and finish your project for relatively cheap – professional installation can by costly depending on the size of the area, however the finish will be worth the cost.
Pros: Glazed tiles are very durable and resistant to scratches. They are water resistant. Tile is fairly easy to clean, and stains are not much of a concern.
Cons: Tile can be cold and heating systems for tile are very expensive. Tile has no “give” and so can crack if there is movement in the home. This can be difficult to repair. It can be loud to walk on and as with hardwood it can echo in large areas.
Best Rooms: Since tile is water resistant, it is perfect for a bathroom or a kitchen. It may also work well in a dining area where food and drinks tend to be spilled frequently.
Costs: This is a budget-friendly way of gaining a hardwood look in your home. You will also have to pay for installation.
Pros: Budget-friendly laminate gives the look of wood but is actually a photographic image sandwiched between two wear layers. The material is exceptionally scratch and stain resistant. If it does scratch, a little vegetable oil rubbed on the scratch will get it right out. Like hardwoods, laminate is easy to clean. It is also great for pets because they can’t scratch or stain it.
Cons: Standing water will ruin laminate flooring. If the laminate does get ruined, unlike read hardwoods, laminate cannot be refinished.
Best Rooms: Laminate is great for high traffic areas such as a foyer or any room with a lot of activity because of its durability.
Costs: The cost of carpet varies greatly depending on the quality. You will need to pay for installation too which can be expensive depending on the square meters you are needing to have laid.
Pros: Carpet provides actual thermal resistance, or R-value. In colder climates or seasons, it retains warm air longer, an energy conservation benefit. Carpet also provides a comfortable place to sit, play or work and gives a room an overall warmer feeling. It reduces noise in the home, cushions slips and falls and adds beauty and style.
Cons: Pets and carpet don’t mix well, for instance. If a dog or cat urinates or defecates on carpet, the smell can be difficult to eradicate. Carpeting can aggravate allergy symptoms, as the fibers catch and hold dust, dirt, bugs, and bacteria. If you are allergic to dust mites or similar insects, or if you have a respiratory condition such as asthma, you should think twice about using carpet in your home.
Best Rooms: The best location for carpet is low traffic rooms, such as bedrooms. It helps give a cozy feel to where you sleep and is less likely to receive damage from high activity.
Costs: Vinyl is a budget-friendly choice for home owners. Experienced DIYers can tackle vinyl installation, but professional help is advised for large kitchens that will require piecing seams
Pros: Like carpet, vinyl is quiet and easy on your feet. It is inexpensive compared to some of the other flooring types. It is a perfect choice for busy cooks and homes with kids prone to spills, vinyl is easy to clean, waterproof, and stain-proof.
Cons: Although vinyl has come a long way and can be made to look like wood or tile, it still does not look as good as the real thing. Vinyl dents and tears easily. Vinyl emits volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which can affect indoor air quality.
Best Rooms: Vinyl is great for a laundry room as it can shield a lot of the sound from your laundry machines. It could also work well in bathrooms and the kitchen because of the warmth it adds. Felt or foam back also gives vinyl cushion to make it more comfortable in rooms where you’ll do a lot of standing, like the kitchen. Even more, the softer surface can protect glasses and dishes from breaking when dropped. Choosing a top-quality sheet vinyl (rather than peel-and-stick tiles) will reduce seams where water can seep under.