The most popular types of flooring that homeowners choose these days are wood, or wood laminate. Wood creates that comfy, warm, country feel that so many people are wanting for their home. But wood, and wood laminate has its advantages and disadvantages. We’ve put together a small guide on the types of flooring we offer and their pros and cons…
Hardwood flooring will cost anywhere from $3 to $12 per square foot depending on the type of wood. Installing hardwood is a material we do a lot of, so we’re pretty experienced with it, and can handle most any hardwood flooring job. It’s something you could also handle yourself as a DIY project, but because wood scratches and scuffs easily, we recommend hiring a professional to do it, just to protect the wood during the installation process. Hardwood can also be noisy to walk on, so we recommend using throw rugs in high traffic areas. And definitely use a throw rug in the kitchen to protect against spills.
Because there are so many different types of tile, stone and ceramic, prices can range from $1 to $20 per square foot. Moreover, there are so many different brands of tile. (See our previous article on stone types). Always go with a trusted, quality brand of tile, because discount brands will always end up cracking and breaking apart. Here at Luigi’s Tile & Stone, we work exclusively with Daltile, the brand all professional contractors go with. Glazed ceramic tile is the most scratch resistant, the most easiest to clean, and it’s stain-resistant. It’s also more inexpensive than stone tile. Travertine is perhaps the most beautiful, and most popular of the stone tiles, but slate and granite are also popular choices for homeowners. Keep in mind that tile gets pretty cold to walk on during Winter months, so plan areas for throw rugs.
Probably the cheapest, and one of the easiest to install as a DIY project, laminate runs anywhere from $0.50 to $3 per square foot. But just because it’s easy to install, doesn’t mean you should jump right in and do it yourself. Definitely read up and watch videos first. Our company, still, however, installs a lot of laminate flooring. It’s popular because it’s stain resistant, scratch resistant, easy to clean, and perfect for homes with kids and pets. However, despite popular belief, laminate is not water resistant, so plan carefully where you plan to lay it in your home. If you want to use in the kitchen, be sure to use throw rugs by the sink and refrigerator. Same thing is you want to use it in the laundry room. Another big consideration is that wood laminate flooring can not be refinished the way hardwood floors can.
Carpeting costs range from $2 and $5 per square foot, including the carpet padding, but those costs also vary on the brand. We use exclusively Mohawk Carpeting, which is high-end standard among flooring contractors. The best advantage carpets can offer is a soft, warm footing in colder months, and virtually no noise while walking on. For these reasons, carpet is a popular choice for bedrooms. The disadvantages is keeping carpets clean. Despite claims of being stain-resistant carpets still stain. Moreover, they have to be professionally cleaned at least once a year because dirt, mold, and pollen still collects despite how frequently you vacuum. If you have a lot of allergies, carpets will harbor allergens and make living in your home miserable.
Do people still use Vinyl flooring? Absolutely! We still do a lot of Vinyl projects. Vinyl costs between $1 to $5 per square foot. It’s easy to install as a DIY project. Vinyl is easy to keep clean, and it’s water resistant. It is not stain-resistant, however, and not scratch resistant. However, regular floor cleaning and polishing will keep Vinyl looking brand new. Another great advantage to Vinyl is that it dampens sound in the same way that carpet does, but offers the look of a solid floor. Vinyl is a great choice for kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms.
Cork is quickly becoming popular. Costs will range between $2 to $8 per square foot. Most homeowners find it offers a warm, soft footing in cold months, yet still provides the look of a wood floor. It also dampens sound the same way that carpet does. For these reasons, cork is a popular choice for bedrooms. It’s also great for people with allergies because it’s antimicrobial and resistant to mold. However, cork will fade in direct sunlight, and because it’s so soft, it can be tricky to work with as a DIY project. Definitely hire a professional just because professionals know to how to protect cork during installation. Cork also tends to sink compress under the weight of furniture, and will swell under standing water.