Choosing the Right Floor for Your Home
Picking a flooring for a new home or renovation can be a daunting task because of all the options available on the market. Do you choose hardwood or laminate? Should you go with carpet or cork for the living room? Since we know that deciding on a floor is an investment of not only money but also time, we wanted to outline the 5 popular flooring options for you.
Hardwood flooring is available in multiple types of woods including oak, cherry, walnut, maple, and hickory. Each type can be sanded and stained to meet your specifications.
Pros: Hardwood floors are durable, easily cleaned, and with proper maintenance can last for more than 100 years. In the event of needing repairs, hardwood can be sanded and refinished.
Cons: Can be scratched, dinged, and will show wear over time - especially in higher traffic areas. Not suitable for areas that are susceptible to moisture. The flooring can be noisy when walking across it, and with temperature changes it will expand and contract.
Tile is a common choice for flooring because it can be used for any room and provides a clean and elegant aesthetic. Whether you're looking for ceramic, porcelain, or mosaic tile, the versatile design options will be able to compliment any room.
Pros: Like most flooring, tile is very durable and can handle heavy foot traffic. Unlike other flooring, tile is moisture resistant and is impervious to extreme temperatures. Additionally, tiles are easy to maintain, most are environmentally-friendly, and all are diverse.
Cons: The hardness of tile can be a hindrance in the event of items being dropped on it. Typically an object like a glass will shatter upon impact and the tiles will experience a crack or chipping from the impact.
When it comes to maintenance, the tiles are easy to maintain, however, grout lines can be more of a hindrance as they are prone to stains and mildew build-up.
Terrazzo flooring is unique because it offers creative freedom and design customization. When it comes to designing, you can choose recycled materials such as glass or marble, or you can choose unusual materials such as sea shells or metal shavings.
Pros: When it comes to Terrazzo flooring, it is known for being incredibly durable, have easy maintenance, and can contribute to LEED points if eco-friendly material is chosen.
Cons: Involves a specialized installation, higher costs, terrazzo surfaces do not retain heat so in cooler climates you can expect to have colder floors unless you've chosen to install a heat insulator underneath.
If you'd like to read more about terrazzo flooring, check out our article "Choosing Terrazzo Flooring for Your Project"
Concrete flooring isn't a common choice of flooring for homes, but has been gaining popularity. This is mostly because concrete is available in a variety of textures, colours and finishes. So you can transform the flooring to match your aesthetic easily.
Pros: Concrete flooring is very durable and involves minimal maintenance. An occasional sweeping and damp mopping will keep the floors clean and looking pristine.
Although concrete is known for being cooler, the option to create heated floors is available with concrete. You can choose to add radiant heat either via electrical cables or hot water tubes embedded in the concrete.
Cons: Since concrete is a heavier material, it's important to consult a structural engineer prior to installation. This of course, increases the costs associated with the flooring.
While the durability of the flooring is desirable, the hardness of it has been classified as uncomfortable by some. Luckily area rugs can alleviate this issue.
In order for concrete to be low maintenance, a sealant needs to be placed on top of it. Over time the sealant will need to be reapplied.
Cork is a renewable resource that has spiked in popularity as individuals are leaning towards greener building methods. It not only offers a soft surface, but also numerous other benefits.
Pros: In addition to a soft surface, cork is available in a variety of colors and can be refinished to meet your design requirements. it is also a good insulator of heat and reduces noise transfer. This makes it an excellent choice for upper level floors, apartment buildings, and living rooms.
Cons: Cannot be in rooms that are susceptible to water or over exposure of sunlight. Since cork is a softer material, it can be damaged by sharp or heavy objects.
Interested in more flooring options? Check out our post 20+ Flooring CAD Drawings to Help You With Your Next Project. In this article we've highlighted 7 various floor types and provided links to CAD files so that your favourites can be easily incorporated into your next project.