Are you wondering how to choose flooring materials for your house? Looking for the right flooring is more complex than just buying the most popular material in the market. Other factors such as cost, durability, and moisture will significantly impact your decision.
The most important decision you can make for your home is the type of flooring material to install. While flooring is one of the most dominant visual decor factors in a home, you must select the suitable material according to foot traffic, part of the house, and the intended use.
There are dozens of flooring options in the market today. Statistically, vinyl is considered the most popular flooring option in U.S. homes. However, it might not be the right option for you. Check out our guide below on how to choose the right flooring for your home.
How to Choose Flooring Materials for Different Rooms
When picking out new floor material for your home, prior-planning will increase your satisfaction rate after the installation. Different rooms have different flooring needs. This means that your bathroom may not have the same flooring material as the bedroom.
Asking yourself the below questions will bring you a step closer to finding the right flooring option:
- How much foot traffic will each room be receiving?
- What’s the size of my family, and what space will they use regularly?
- How long do I expect my flooring material to last?
- Will the floor be periodically exposed to water and moisture?
- How often will the floor be cleaned?
The right flooring material for your home should be practical and reflect your personal taste. The floor is the surface where your household members, friends, and pets will sit on, stand and play. Asking the above questions before hitting the market will ease your decision-making process.
Below are different rooms in your house and how to choose the right flooring for each.
Kitchen flooring should be easy to clean, sturdy, and long-lasting. The best choices for kitchen flooring include ceramic tile, linoleum, and wood.
Linoleum is easy to clean, affordable, and comes in numerous beautiful designs. On the other hand, Ceramic tiles are available in numerous patterns and designs and are easy to clean and maintain. They are scratch and dent-resistant and are more durable than linoleum.
However, when you chose tiles, remember that structural floor movement could lead to cracking. If your house is too old, you should consider replacing the subfloor before installing the tiles.
If you have children, you should choose tiles with a course, textured surface. Tiles tend to be very slippery when wet, which could lead to fatal slip and fall accidents. Your family’s safety should come first when looking for flooring options.
Wood is the most unpopular flooring choice for kitchens. However, hardwood is a good choice for kitchen floors. Your family will probably spend most of their time in the kitchen. Wooden floors can give your kitchen a homey feeling.
Wood is also the perfect material for high-traffic floor areas. When installing wood, remember to apply a generous amount of protective finish to protect the floor from the kitchen’s moisture.
Bathrooms floors experience more moisture than kitchen floors. That’s why ceramic tiles, linoleum, marble, granite, and limestone are popular bathroom flooring options. However, these materials have different price tags and need varying levels of expertise for installation.
Installing vinyl and ceramic tiles is relatively easy, and anyone should able to do it. While ceramic tiles look great and are more durable when used in a bathroom, they are quite expensive. Other high-end materials like marble are pretty challenging to work with- you’ll need a professional to assist with the installation.
The Living Room
When choosing different flooring types for other living areas in your home, personal taste will significantly impact your choice. Some homeowners prefer tiles while others like wood or carpet. Each option has different advantages and disadvantages. Below are characteristics of different kinds of flooring materials:
Porcelain, Stone and Ceramic Tiles
Tiles come in different styles and patterns, from simple-looking to exotic. This gives you a variety of styles to work with depending on your personal preference. You may choose to give a room an exotic or creative feel.
Below are the advantages of using tilled flooring material:
- It’s waterproof, making it perfect for rooms prone to moisture
- Low maintenance
- Ideal for installing in areas with direct sunlight
- Quite easy to repair
- Consistent coloring
- Increases your home’s resale value
Tiles are perfect for bathrooms and kitchens. However, they can feel stiff and cold underfoot. Thus, they’re not the ideal choice if you prefer cozy and warm floors.
Wood would be a better option for you if you like cozy warm floors, thanks to its natural elegance, beauty, and warm and soft feel underfoot.
Wood flooring is easy to clean, stain-resistant, and offers durable versatility. That’s because it can be sanded and refinished in case of damage. Wood also provides a variety of selections as it comes in both hardwood and softwood options.
The most used wood types for flooring are oak, birch, pine, and maple. Different kinds of woods vary in quality, durability, cost, and appearance. This gives you a variety of finishes, colors, and species to work with.
According to statistics, homes with wood flooring are 10% more likely to sell than those without. Wooden flooring also increases your home’s resale value.
Carpets have sound-proofing qualities, making them one of the quietest flooring options in the market today. Other attributes of carpet flooring include:
- They have insulation properties
- They are affordable
- Easily adjusts to uneven subfloors and walls
- Comfortable and cozy for walking barefoot
- Come in different colors offering design flexibility
Carpets are perfect for someone with toddlers at home as they offer a safe landing in case of a fall. A rug gives your home a cozy, intimate, and homey feeling. It’s great for bedrooms and other rooms where you spend a lot of time barefoot.
Whether you prefer resistant nylon or standard woolen carpets, shop around beforehand to get a feel for different textures and designs.
Vinyl is quite popular among homeowners. That’s because it offers numerous budget-friendly options, and it’s a low-maintenance material. Below are other advantages of using vinyl for your flooring:
- Affordable and good-looking
- Available in different patterns, colors, and textures
- It’s durable
- It can be easily installed over existing floors
- It’s stain-resistant
- Easy installation process
Vinyl flooring is very sturdy, thus, it’s perfect for high foot traffic areas of your home. It’s also comfy underfoot and has sound-proof qualities. This is an essential quality for homeowners with children and pets.
When exposed to too much sunlight, vinyl could discolor, making it the wrong flooring material for outdoor use. Sharp objects and extreme temperatures can also damage vinyl flooring.
Laminate is an inexpensive substitute for hardwood flooring. It’s designed to feel and look like wood, but with lower prices. This is the perfect flooring option for homeowners on a tight budget.
Laminate is also suitable for high foot traffic areas as it is resistant to fading, scratches, and stains. It also comes in different colors and finishes to fit all your aesthetic needs.
Before You Choose Flooring Options for Your House
Before buying any flooring materials, there are essential factors to consider. Some of these factors include the level of traffic and exposure to moisture. Below are other factors to consider:
The Location of the Floor
Is the flooring material going above or below grade? Basements are more vulnerable to ground moisture. Therefore, your flooring choice for the basement may be different from that of the upstairs rooms.
Bathrooms and kitchens are prone to moisture which leads to water damage. Such rooms require premium waterproof flooring to reduce the impact of the damage. A room’s exposure to water and moisture should also play a significant role in impacting your decision.
Take note of the room you are placing the flooring. Some flooring materials are damaged by exposure to direct sunlight and UV rays. Knowing this early in advance will save you disappointments down the road.
Observe the room throughout the day to find out if it gets a lot of direct suns. Sunlight causes some flooring materials to darken or fade. Therefore, look for more resistant materials for such rooms.
Take detailed measurements of the room and draw to scale. Remember also to include fireplaces, doorways, and built-in structures that impact the flow of the floor. Calculate the room’s total square footage to know the amount of material you need.
Remember to buy extra flooring materials in case you need them. This gives you an allowance for mistakes and a replacement of broken pieces.
Now You Know How to Choose Flooring Material for Your Home
Whether you choose different flooring types for each room or decide to keep the consistency, there are numerous factors to consider before buying the materials. The above guide on how to choose flooring materials for your home will make the process easier.
Comparing different flooring material’s qualities, durability, and cost will get you one step closer to making the right decision.
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