A Talk With..., Interiors

Flooring Choices for Your Home: Pros and Cons of Carpet, Hardwood and Laminate

Hi everyone!  I was out recently on vacation with my family and Denver’s Floor Club offered to write a guest post for me on picking the perfect floor for your home.  I am at The Floor Club almost once a week (sometimes more) with clients.  I interviewed one of their sales representatives, Jessica Cochran, last Spring about tile trends – you can read that here.  Here’s their article with a few comments from me!

Carpet, Hardwood or Laminate?

Whoops! Did you spill wine and now your carpet is stained? Or, is your hardwood floor is just too cold for you bare feet in the morning? Maybe, you are just ready for something you actually like to look at?

There is no denying that the flooring of a home is one of the most important features. Picking the right kind for your house, lifestyle and budget is crucial for comfort, decor and a home’s value.

With several different types of flooring out there, it can be hard figuring out which is perfect for certain rooms and lifestyles.

Carpet, hardwood and laminate are three main kinds of flooring that we are focusing on today. They all have pros, and they all have cons, but there is certainly a right type for you and we’ll help you find it.

Carpet

carpet master bedroom denver
I love the simple look of this room. The comfort of carpeting under your feet first thing in the morning is hard to deny. (Source)

Pros:

● Carpet is the most cost-effective and diverse option for flooring. From purchase price, installation fees and the cost of maintaining, carpet demands the least amount of coin out of your pocket.

●  Carpet also has nearly unlimited possibilities for design, cuts, colors and patterns that can meet any aesthetic demand.

●  Beyond its cost and design, carpet is also very practical. Carpet can save energy as it acts as an insulator. It also absorbs sound and is safer because it doesn’t allow someone to accidentally slip.  (And if you do slip – you’re cushioned! – Laura)

●  Carpet can actually be good for health as it traps allergens and other contaminants until properly disposed of (usually vacuuming). (I did not know this!  I always think of it as the reverse – interesting! – Laura)

Cons:

●  Wine and grape juice drinkers beware: carpeting is by far the easiest flooring to stain and is the most difficult to get a liquid out of.  (I’m a coffee drinker and am a little footloose and fancy free with my mug.   Personally, I’m not a wall-to-wall carpet person for this reason alone. – Laura)

●  Carpet also doesn’t last as long as other types of flooring (see below) and is subject to ‘matting’ or crushing, where carpet eventually loses its’ softness and fluff over time.

Hardwood

dark oak floor
This is new oak flooring stained dark in a farmhouse style home in Golden, Colorado. Hardwood flooring is my favorite floor choice for dining rooms and living rooms. (Photo from Laura Medicus Interiors)

Pros:

●  If you are someone who cares deeply about the look and “feel” of a room, then you might want to consider hardwood floors. They have a high quality look and they add monetary value to your home; potential buyers will pay more for a home with hardwood floors.

●  Hardwood floors are durable and can last a lifetime when properly cared for. How much care do hardwood floors need? Another advantage, hardwood floors require minimal maintenance beyond the occasional sweeping, rare staining or use of hardwood cleaner to clean up messes.

Cons:

●  $$$. Cash. Money. Coin. However you say it, hardwood floors cost a lot, more than any other flooring option.

●  Scratching and the finishing. For as long as hardwood floors can last, they can be scratched. The easiness of scratching varies and depends on the exact type of wood. There is a “fix”, you can restain, but that can take up to several hours depending on the size.

●  Clunk, click, clack. Hardwood floors are NOISEY. Especially if you have children, pets or just simply don’t want to hear someone’s every step when they walk around.

Laminate

laminate reclaimed wood floor
Armstrong’s laminate Woodland Reclaim in Old Original Wood Brown. If you haven’t looked at laminates in a while, you might be surprised at the quality and the look. (Source)

Pros:

●  Life imitates art or art imitates life? Either way, laminate definitely imitates hardwood, but at a fraction of the cost. Like hardwood, laminate is stain resistant, and easy to maintain.  Additionally, the quality, look and choices for laminate have all increased over the years. (You would be surprised by how good some of the newer laminates out there look!  – Laura)

●  Laminate is also easy to install compared to hardwood. It comes in reasonable planks or tiles that are designed to snap together, making it very DIY-able. There is no glue or nails to mess with.

Cons:

●  Laminate flooring is very susceptible to moisture damage. You likely don’t want to use it in laundry rooms or basements. You can get away with laminate in bathrooms and kitchens, so long as you are diligent about immediately picking up any water or liquid that may spill onto it.

●  Once it’s worn out, it must be replaced. You can’t add finish to laminate like you can hardwood floors.

Okay, so which flooring is right for me?

Every room is different, every home is different and every person is, you guessed it, different. Ultimately there is no ‘wrong’ choice when picking flooring, so long as you are happy with it. Here is a quick rundown to find the flooring for you:

●  If you are going for cost-effective, warmth, comfort and coziness, carpet is the way to go.  (A lot of my clients will put wall-to-wall carpeting in their bedrooms and their basements – Laura)

●  If long lasting, home value and overall quality is the name of your game, then go ahead and spring for hardwood flooring.  (A lot of people time this with a big renovation like a kitchen remodel – Laura)

●  Going for budget friendly, classy looking and a chance to DIY? Then you’ll be golden with laminate flooring. (It’s come a long way and is very affordable! – Laura)

This post was created by The Floor Club, a Denver Flooring Wholesaler

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