When the time comes to remodel, virtually all homeowners give at least some thought to flooring. New floors are essentially guaranteed to add both beauty and value to any dwelling in which they are placed. Throughout the years, additional options have become available to homeowners, and consumers now have a broad range of flooring materials from which to choose, including carpet, tile and hardwood. Nevertheless, before a final decision is made, several factors must be considered.

Appearance

Almost all homeowners are concerned with appearance when embarking upon any type of remodeling project. Opinions vary significantly from one consumer to the next regarding the aesthetic appeal of carpet versus hardwood flooring or tile. Some individuals are delighted with the natural beauty of hardwood and the fact that it is easy to clean, while others enjoy the luxury of plush, wall-to-wall carpeting. Additionally, one must consider the overall d├ęcor of the home and which type of floor lends itself best to the theme and style of the room where it will be placed.

Living Habits

In addition to aesthetics, consumers must also give thought to their living habits when selecting flooring. For example, if a homeowner has pets with claws, this should be taken into consideration before hardwood floors are installed. Similarly, families with youngsters who come and go from the outdoors on a regular basis may wish to think twice about carpeting, particularly in high traffic areas. This is also true for families who live where rain and snow are common occurrences, as it is a bit easier to remove weather stains from hardwood floors than from carpeting.

Cost and Longevity

Longevity and cost are also essential factors to which thought must be given before a flooring material is selected. As one might suspect, hardwood has a longer lifespan than carpeting, but is also typically more expensive to install. With regard to price, tile falls somewhere between carpet and hardwood, but is generally expensive to repair if it becomes chipped or cracked. Below are some additional facts about the pros and cons of each type of flooring:

Hardwood Flooring

Wood is a renewable, sustainable and natural material. It is a beautiful addition to essentially any room in one’s home, and therefore the result of its installation is almost always satisfactory. In most cases, it is easier to detect crumbs, pet hair and spills from hardwood than from carpeting or patterned tiles. When compared with carpet, the latter of which can be maintained with weekly vacuuming, wood requires a bit more maintenance. It must be swept and cleaned with a damp mop every few days in order to maintain its sparkling appearance. However, with proper care, it can last for generations, making it a good investment even though it is initially a bit costlier than wall-to-wall carpeting.

Homeowners should keep in mind that recycled, reclaimed wood, such as lumber from old wine barrels or outbuildings can be used as residential flooring to save money and lower one’s carbon footprint. After wood of this type is stained and finished, it is almost impossible to tell that it was manufactured from a reclaimed source.

Hardwood flooring types include the following:

  • Maple
  • Rosewood
  • Walnut
  • Cherry
  • Pine
  • Hickory
  • Ash
  • Mahogany
  • Oak

Wood is a beautiful, durable and sustainable choice. Although it requires frequent cleaning, the latter is not a difficult process and few materials can compete with its longevity.

Carpet

Carpet is cheaper, easier and faster to install than wood flooring, but requires replacement approximately every five to seven years. This is because it eventually becomes matted down and stained, even with proper care. Yearly steam cleaning can substantially extend its life, however.

Many people enjoy wall-to-wall carpeting as they can change the style and theme of a room whenever they desire. Carpets with different patterns can be used to make a design impact in virtually any area of the home. Because most carpet patterns hide dirt, weekly vacuuming is typically enough to keep the floor looking neat and tidy. Additionally, the newest carpet materials on today’s market are made from synthetic fibers that are more stain resistant than they were in the past, making cleaning less of a chore.

Carpeted floors are obviously warmer in winter, as they help to absorb drafts, and are quieter than hardwood floors in most cases. Many individuals who prefer the softness and quietness of carpet also enjoy having the option of changing the look of the room whenever the carpet must be replaced. Ultimately, carpet is an affordable option that offers great versatility and creates a quieter, cozier room than other flooring options.

Tile

Tile is a great choice for any area of a home, with the exception of a living room or family room, where one may prefer wall-to-wall carpeting or hardwood. However, for kitchens, hallways, bathrooms or recreation rooms, tile is a terrific option.

The price range of tile is quite broad, as there is a vast array of materials from which tile is made. For example, granite and marble are very costly when compared with ceramic or terra-cotta. Consumers can choose from the following options when selecting a type of tile:

  • Terra-cotta
  • Porcelain
  • Ceramic
  • Slate
  • Marble
  • Granite
  • Stone
  • Quarry
  • Mosaic
  • Glazed

The demand in the United States alone for decorative tile has increased approximately 10 percent from 2007 to 2016 and this trend is expected to continue. In addition to its aesthetic appeal and versatility, it is also considered a practical type of flooring. For example, it is essentially waterproof, does not squeak the way hardwood floors often do, and requires very little maintenance other than sweeping and occasional mopping.

Because there is an abundance of options from which to choose, it is not difficult for most homeowners to find a tile that is affordable. Additionally, unlike wood or carpeting, which are usually one solid color, tiles can be purchased in virtually any pattern or design one desires.

Laminate Flooring

Laminate flooring is also an option a homeowner may wish to consider when remodeling his or her floors. This type of flooring is manufactured from synthetic material and has an identical appearance to that of genuine wood. In decades past, it was not difficult to tell the difference between laminate and hardwood flooring, but the former has been perfected over time and distinguishing it from genuine hard wood has become a challenging endeavor. This makes this option perfect for individuals who want a hard floor surface, but find authentic hardwood flooring financially out of reach.

The choice between hard surface floors and wall-to-wall carpeting depends on numerous factors, including the budget and preferences of the homeowner. Fortunately, whichever option one chooses, the professionals at Level Up Flooring can help. Any property owner who is considering a project of this type should not hesitate to contact levelupflooring.com to review various options and receive a price estimate. New floors add value and beauty to any home in which they are placed, and therefore are a worthwhile investment for any consumer.