Perhaps you bought your home knowing that as soon as possible you'd be ripping out the shag carpeting and replacing it with hardwood. Or maybe you've been there done that, but that was 20 years ago and now you want new flooring. Here is a handy, helpful guide to help you choose what you will be treading on next:
Hardwood: This is the most traditional, long lasting choice. But it can be a bit overwhelming choosing the right type of wood and the right shade to match your taste and style.
Pros: The most durable. It can be refinished many times over for a new look. They are very easy to clean and are water and stain resistant.
Cons: They are on the pricier end of the spectrum. They do not retain heat and they do not absorb/block sound.
Carpeting: Also pretty traditional, and comes in many colors and styles.
Pros: Let's face it; it's cushy. The kids can spread out on the floor in front of the television, It acts as an insulator in colder months. Carpeting can even help with allergens by trapping them. It also absorbs sound.
Cons: A bit harder to keep clean, especially when you have kids and pets. Wears out faster than hardwood.
Stone: Here in Colorado, we may do a kitchen or entryway in stone, but unlike Texas or Arizona, we do not typically do the entire main level, and rarely tile an upper level or staircase.
Pros: Easily the most durable material, and it tends to improve with age. Easy clean up. Timeless.
Cons: Cold. Unless you add a floor heater. Labor intensive to install and a bit on the pricey depending on what type you choose.
Cork: A less popular choice, but perhaps you should not overlook this option...
Pros: Highly sustaibable, and very eco-friendly (gives you some bragging rights). Stands up well in high traffic areas and is mildew resistant.
Cons: The durability is highly dependent on how well the finish was applied. If done incorrectly, the material will absorb water, and deteriorate. While it may be eco-friendly, it isn't necessarily budget friendly.
Vinyl: Certainly the least expensive and easy to install, You can great colors and even get vinyl to look like hardwood or travertine tile. Don't rule this out!
Pros: Super easy to clean, budget friendly, highly water resistant. Easy to install over subflooring with nails or glue.
Cons: Perhaps not the most eco friendly ....and it can tear if something sharp falls on it or rips across it....when that happens it is difficult to repair without ripping it all out and starting over.
Remember no matter what you choose, that updating and improving your home is always a good idea! It adds value and equity, so you are making a good investment.