Choosing the right floor for your home can be a daunting prospect.
In addition to the color and design of your walls, your floors have the biggest long-term impact on the mood and style of a room, making it a critical choice as you consider your interior decor. At the same time, your floors are a surface that you and your family will walk on, play on, and spill things all over for years to come—meaning that it’s also important to consider practicality.
How can you combine appearance, durability, and more to find the right option for you? Learn how to choose your flooring with our easy, step-by-step flooring guide.
Consider the Impact of Moisture
If your floor will be in a kitchen or bathroom, or if it will be near the well-trafficked entrance to your home, you’ll need to find an option that works well with frequent splashes and moisture. Good choices for this type of floor include concrete, porcelain or ceramic tile, linoleum, or vinyl.
Keep Pets and Kids in Mind
If you have pets or young children, you’ll want to choose a durable floor that’s resistant to wear and tear, though the extent depends on the type of damage you expect to see. Dogs, for example, can leave scratches on your floors due to their non-retractable claws, so you’ll want to look for some pup-friendly flooring materials. Other kid- and pet-friendly floors can include harder materials like tile and laminate floors as well as softer options like carpeting.
Establish a Budget
Take some time to work out what you can afford per square foot.
Low-price range: If you’re looking for something for a small budget, you’ll likely be able to work with inexpensive laminate flooring, as well as ceramic or porcelain tile.
Mid-price range: Moving into the mid-price range, you’ll find more expensive laminates, as well as stone, tile, carpet, and bamboo.
High-price range: Here, you’ll be able to afford exotic hardwoods and certain types of engineered wood, as well as higher-quality versions of all of the flooring types above.
If you’re in the high to the mid-price range, you’ll have many options, which can make it hard to pick. Check out this comparative guide when choosing between laminate and carpet, two of the more popular flooring options, or try this one for help choosing between types of hardwood flooring.
Decide Who Will Install It
Installing your own flooring will make a significant dent on the cost, but certain floors are easier to install than others as a DIY project. Laminate or vinyl floors are the best types of flooring for this, as they fit easily against the adjacent boards. However, you may want to only do small sections of your house flooring if it’s your first time tackling this kind of DIY.
If you don’t want to do the job yourself, you open up your options for a wider range of flooring materials. Reach out to an expert to make sure complex installations are done well the first time.
Be Realistic About Maintenance
If you know you’ll need a fuss-free floor that won’t need constant cleaning, you’ll want to pick durable floors like tile, sheet, carpet, or laminate. These options are great for busy homeowners as well as families with young children. Otherwise, you can opt for various types of hardwood, which are beautiful but notorious for needing special care.
How to Choose Your Flooring
At the end of the day, these flooring tips are simply a jumping-off point to help you start thinking about the right options for your home. As you do your research on how to choose your flooring, you’ll get a better idea of the flooring colors and styles that fit your needs. Check out our other posts for inspiration and style guides to help you find the best options.