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Flooring: What's Best For Your Home?

January 3, 2022

Deciding which flooring to use in which room of your house is a crucial choice to make. In order to go over all the kinds of flooring and how to choose them, we’ll have to cover a lot of ground (see what I did there?). Aside from the obvious “no carpet in the bathroom” rule, there are other factors to consider in deciding which floor goes where. From hardwood to linoleum to carpet, here are 10 different options for your home’s floors.

Hardwood: Hardwood is made of solid pieces of wood fitted together to create a beautiful finish. Different woods and stains are available to customize it for the colors of your home. Popular woods include cherry, maple, walnut, and oak. Hardwood looks amazing, lasts a long time, and takes some effort to maintain (floor cleaner every few months and a fresh finishing coat every five years).

Benefits:

-Aesthetically pleasing

-Increases home value

-Customizable

Downsides:

-Expensive ($5-10 a foot)

-Easily scuffed

-Not easy to maintain

Engineered wood: Unlike hardwood, engineered wood isn’t real wood all the way through and is more budget-friendly. A thin layer of hardwood covered in a high-quality plywood substrate, engineered wood can look as good and last as long without breaking the bank. Good for the DIY gang, the “I don’t need instructions” partner, and the budgeter, engineered wood scratches less and takes water damage better. Costs between $5-9 to install.

Benefits:

-Less expensive

-Looks similar to hardwood

-DIY friendly

-Water resistant

Downsides:

-Fades quicker

-Can’t be refinished

-Can sound hollow

Bamboo: Bamboo flooring has grown more popular in recent years thanks to its eco-friendly make, inexpensive installation, and renewability. At $3-9 a foot, bamboo is an excellent option for kitchens and decks due to its stain-resistant nature. Bamboo generally comes in three different types: natural, stained, and carbonized. Bamboo can be made in just about any color without losing its minimalist design.

Benefits:

-Relatively inexpensive

-Noise absorbent

-Pet friendly

-Easy to clean

Downsides:

-Easily warped

-Susceptible to water

-Pro installation adds $3-5 a foot

Carpet: Carpet is a popular choice for many rooms across all kinds of houses for the simple reason that it is both comfortable and there are many options. For families with young children, carpet is a bit of a paradox because it is softer for falling toddlers but it traps odors from spilled food and drink. From $2 to $10 a foot, carpet can be both a good budget option and a high-end installation.

Benefits:

-Comfortable

-Can be inexpensive

-Easy to remove

-Soft for children learning to walk

Downsides:

-Can trap odors

-Stains easily

Laminate: Laminate is an excellent option for people who want the look of wood without paying the cost of wood or engineered wood. Made of pressed wood particles and subjected to high heat, laminate floors have a perfectly imaged top to look like real wood. Although it doesn’t feel like real wood, it looks the part. Thanks to recent changes in the way laminate is made and used, the flooring is economical, practical, and easy to install.

Benefits:

-Scratch resistant

-Easy to install

-Easy to remove

-$3-7 a foot installed

Downsides:

-Chips easily

-Can feel hollow

-Not ideal for kitchens

-Susceptible to moisture

Linoleum: A durable and eco-friendly flooring, linoleum comes in at $4-8 a foot. It’s made from linseed oil and cork, comes in sheet form, and comes in many different colors and styles. It’s a great choice for the DIY crowd and its customizable nature has made it popular with renters and house hoppers. It’s excellent for high traffic areas thanks to its easy-to-maintain profile.

Benefits:

-Affordable

-Requires little maintenance

-Versatile

Downsides:

-Can dent and darken

-Less “presentable”

-Prone to warping

Vinyl: One of the most resilient floors, vinyl is easy to install and resistant to stains, water, and the burden of maintenance. Many prefer vinyl flooring for the perfect “firmness” is has, meaning that the floor bounces back a little under foot. Made of plastic, it’s available in sheet, tile, and plank. At only $1.50 a foot for sheet, and $6 for Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP), vinyl is a wonderful option for a variety of budgets.

Benefits:

-Inexpensive

-Easy to install

-Durable and water resistant

Downsides:

-Tough to remove

-Variable quality

-LVP costs more than linoleum

Stone: A high quality choice, natural stone like granite, marble, and travertine works well in both indoor and outdoor spaces. Stone is stain resistant and easy to clean, and it’s incredibly durable for those who are worried about quality over long periods of time. It doesn’t hold onto dust or pollen, and it looks elegant and seamless with just about any material. Depending on the type of stone, you could be looking at anything between $2-10 a foot.

Benefits:

-Long-lasting

-Classy and elegant

-Simple and easy to clean

Downsides:

-Some types chip easily

-Expensive

-Hard underfoot

Tile: One of the most versatile durable options, tile comes in an infinite number of shapes, types, and colors. Tile is easily customizable and timeless, though it can be difficult for the DIY crowd to install themselves. It’s easy to maintain and water resistant, but it’s hard and slippery as well. While it is perhaps not the best choice for high-speed children and dogs, tile is built to last and its versatility is hard to pass up.

Benefits:

-Durability

-Customizable

-Easy to clean and smooth

Downsides:

-Not DIY friendly

-Gets cold easily

-Can be up to $20 a foot

Back to the Recently at Highline

“Highline exceeded our expectations.”

“Communication was constant, honest and clear. Trevor and his crew were all friendly and professional.  They listened to our requests and delivered.

”We are thrilled with the quality of work! The project was on time and on budget. We will definitely be recommending Highline to our friends and family.”

– Matt Whitten, Bellingham, WA

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