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Determining the Best Flooring Materials for Your Home

Homeowners have a large selection of attractive flooring options. With such a wide array of products available, choosing the best flooring materials for your home may feel overwhelming. This article discusses some of the most common flooring materials and compares water resistance, maintenance, durability, price, and installation.

Popular Flooring Options

  • Wood

    Wood flooring holds timeless appeal. If you are searching for a strong, classic flooring material, wood is a great option. Pricing per square foot varies based on the type of wood, but homeowners typically spend between $4-$12 per square foot for finished hardwood flooring. Rare or exotic woods like teak or mahogany cost more than common species like oak and maple. Installation typically requires the skills of a professional and costs an additional $3-$5 per square foot. Unfortunately, wood offers poor water resistance. It will warp or rot if exposed to water for extended periods of time. With proper care, hardwood floors will last for several decades.

  • Vinyl

    Vinyl flooring is one of the most popular flooring options. It offers affordability at $1-$2 per square foot and comes in a wide variety of color and design selections, including patterns that mimic hardwood. You can select cut-to-fit sheets of vinyl or vinyl tiles. Vinyl withstands water well. It requires little maintenance (other than regular cleaning) and can last for about 20 years.

  • Ceramic Tile

    Ceramic tile flooring is available in a variety of styles, such as distinctive Saltillo tile. Ceramic tile may be the answer for rooms in your home that are exposed to water, such as the bathroom and kitchen. Low maintenance tile flooring can endure for 50 to 100 years with proper care. Glazed tiles tend to wear better than tiles without glazing. Property owners can apply flooring sealants and protective coatings to safeguard ceramic tile against scuffing and stains. Most tile floors require professional installation. The type of tile impacts the price, but the cost averages around $5 per square foot.

  • Carpeting

    Homeowners sometimes choose to carpet bedrooms and hallways in their home for noise reduction. Carpeting is typically applied over a finished floor or concrete. Expect to spend between $1-$4 per square foot in material costs. While some carpets offer better water resistance than others, extended contact with moisture ruins most types. Carpeting requires frequent vacuuming and at least annual deep-cleaning to remove embedded debris. Carpets, given regular care, last approximately 20 years.

Customize Your Home’s Flooring

Select the best flooring materials for your home based on the needs of your household and personal preferences. In some cases, homeowners choose to customize the flooring in certain rooms. For example, hardwoods can be installed with a contrasting border. Adding area rugs over hardwood flooring warms up living spaces. With a variety of excellent flooring options available, you can be creative when choosing the best flooring for your home.

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