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Home Improvement Hardwood Flooring

The Impact of Your Floor

When you walk into someone’s home one of the first things you notice is the floor. After all, it is the canvas on which the home is built upon.A home with wall to wall carpet flooring can look nice but is rarely stunning. Tile is difficult to clean, and while it can look nice, it easily turns to an ice like surface with the slightest bit of moisture. Wood flooring, on the other hand, offers a beautiful looking and long lasting solution that can be the foundation of the design of your home.

The Truth about Flooring Types

Before getting into some of the specifics about the different types of wood flooring, you should look at what each type of floor covering can bring to your home. Carpet, tile and wood are the basic three types of flooring styles for and a quick breakdown of each follows.

Carpeting has its advantages.

· Temperature has little to no effect

· Soft for laying down and watching a movie or show

· Comfortable for bare feet

· Can stay looking new with minimal effort

Carpeting also has some significant disadvantages.

· Colors can go in and out of style

· Carpet is great at hiding dirt

· Really cleaning carpet requires specialized tools

· With pets and children stains can occur on the first day

· Heavy traffic (hallways and doorways) show wear quickly

· Repairs are very difficult

Tile offers some benefits that carpet cant.

· Offers a clean unified look throughout a home

· With minimal grouting, cleaning is simple

· Stains rarely stick around

Having experience with tile in my past, I can tell you first hand the problems with it.

· Most types of tile become extremely slick when wet or with wet feet

· Can be very hard on bare feet

· Impossible to lay on comfortably

· If the tile design includes grout, cleaning is all but impossible for lighter colors

· Sound travels through the house much easier

· Pets have difficulty gaining traction when time to play

· Young children can take a beating while they learn to walk

Obviously I’m not a huge fan of tile flooring. I lived with it for nearly a decade and while the first few years I loved it, once my child and puppy entered my life I started seeing problems. Restoring the grout was a monumental task. Some higher quality tiles, which are more porous offer some relief from these problems, but some of my best memories as a child were wrestling on the ground with my parents or having tickle fights. That doesn’t work on tile.

Looking at Hardwood and the Varied Types of Flooring

To be fair when it comes to talking about hardwood flooring we should first look at the advantages and disadvantages the same as we did with carpet and tile.

Hardwood flooring has a number of advantages.

· Of all flooring types, hardwood flooring gives the biggest wow factor when it comes to initial impressions

· Easy to maintain

· Simple to keep clean

· Cheap and easy to repair

· Has a long lifespan

· Variety of woods allow more customization throughout the home

· Not very susceptible to temperature changes for bare feet

· Increases the value of the home

Hardwood flooring does have some disadvantages, some are shared with tile flooring.

· Without rugs or runners throughout the house sound carries easily

· Without proper accompaniments (furniture, rugs, mats) it can look cold

· Can be more expensive to install initially

· Needs to be maintained through humidity control

· You won’t hide any dust

· Susceptible to sunlight in some cases (fading)

· Furniture needs to have soft feet covers to prevent scratching

With all of that said, the disadvantages may be of a concern – especially the humidity control. It should be noted that it requires a pretty significate change in humidity to have any impact on the flooring. What we find comfortable is generally perfectly acceptable for a hardwood. While the flooring is harder than carpet, it is generally easier on the feet than tile, but still a bit too hard to roll around on the floor with kids or pets.

Styles of Hardwood Flooring

One of the biggest draws to hardwood flooring is just how customizable it is. With a number of different styles of flooring and materials that are used, you are sure to find a perfect fit for your dream home. The styles vary a great deal in both appearance, use and cost.

· Laminate Flooring is the most cost effective choice as it is more eco-friendly and much easier to maintain than most other options. On the other hand it does look like laminate flooring which is a deal breaker for some.

· Parquet Flooring is, literally, a patterned floor. With two types of parquet floors available (solid and panels) there is plenty of customization available for this type of hardwood. It is particular popular in residences because of its durability and lesser cost. It also give you flexibility to design something a little more unique as far as your floor design goes.

· Timber Decking is one of the more beautiful options as it comes in a range of colors and species which allow you to fully customize how it works with your particular home design. It is also very good at preventing germs and bacteria from breeding. You will need to design and plan the layout of your home before the install though, which an experienced flooring install team will be able to help you with. Be careful of direct sunlight as it can really fade the wood quickly.

· Wood Flooring is another eco-friendly option which is made from sustainable resources. The best choice for those with allergies and possibly the most beautiful option. It is generally a neutral choice which should fit with any home design and is extremely durable.

With any flooring choice you make, expect a slightly higher install cost than traditional carpet. This is quickly offset as the flooring is longer lasting and easy to maintain. Set a scheduled time of the year for a professional polishing service to come out and maintain the floor and you will see why this has become such a popular choice for home owners.

Making the Choice that is Right for You

One of the benefits to owning a home is that it is your home. There is not a single option that is perfect for every individual. While we hope that you find our hardwood flooring options the ideal choice, you should make sure to do the research to decide what will best make your home feel like you want. Now that you have plenty information about the different types of flooring available, you are well on your way to making an educated decision that is just perfect for your own desires.

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