Laminate wood flooring is an affordable and popular alternative to real wood. In the past, laminate was considered a cheaper way to renovate a home, but that’s no longer the case. With the right brand and application, laminate can look as good, if not better, than hardwood.
Why Laminate Flooring is the Best Option for Your Home
Laminate flooring can bring wealth, beauty, and comfort to your home for a low price. After installing laminate flooring, you cash in on the following aesthetic and maintenance benefits.
1. Laminate Flooring is Inexpensive
The cost of installing a hardwood floor can range between $12-$22.20 per square foot, whereas laminate installation costs $3.80-$4.80 per square foot. On top of that, you typically need to pay a professional to install hardwood flooring, which makes the project even more costly.
Higher quality laminate flooring, which mimics hardwood, is still much cheaper by comparison at $10-$12 per square foot. Since you aren’t required to hire an installer, you’ll also save a lot of time on labor. In the end, laminate flooring comes out to be 2-7 times cheaper than hardwood.
2. Laminate Flooring is Easy to Install
Solid hardwood is difficult for non-professionals to install. You need specialty tools, like a floor nailer, and you’re required to sand down and finish the planks (unless they’re prefinished).
The whole process can take weeks, and if you do it incorrectly, you can damage your flooring.
On the other hand, Laminate flooring is super easy to install, especially if you include attached padding.
New DIYers can finish their laminate renovation in hours, and you don’t have to wait for the glue to dry. Planks snap together and are easy to cut and lay down directly.
3. Laminate Flooring is Comfortable
Hardwood floors tend to be hard underfoot. If the homeowner doesn’t refinish their flooring, the wood will start to snap off and potentially wind up in your foot.
Since they’re a solid floor, applying a foam underlayment won’t do much to make the flooring softer or more comfortable.
Laminate flooring is much softer underfoot, even without a foam underlayment. Plus, laminate flooring won’t splinter or cause a hazard, which is great if you have pets or small children.
You can also install a radiant heating system underneath laminate flooring, providing extra comfort.
4. Laminate Flooring is Water and Heat Resistant
Real wood is incredibly finicky and tends to warp or shape with a bit of pressure. While popular in kitchens, solid hardwood isn’t recommended because it can easily be damaged by standing water. You should avoid installing it in kitchens, bathrooms, basements, and anywhere damp.
Laminate flooring can be installed in kitchens and bathrooms because it’s highly stained and water-resistant, but you need to be careful.
Be sure to seal the joints to ensure the fiberboard doesn’t swell or chip. Laminate is also heat resistant and isn’t likely to warp from high humidity.
5. Laminate Flooring is Varied in Style and Color
There are some hardwoods that simply can’t be installed as floors, typically because they’re hard to work with.
While you can install softwoods, it’s often a bad idea because they’re more prone to wear and tear. Hardwood only comes in natural wood colors, which limits your choices.
When you choose laminate flooring, you’re given a lot of creative freedom. You can pick from a wide range of patterns, colors, and styles without having to factor in durability.
At the same time, you can also decide how realistic, glossy, dramatic, vibrant, and professional you want it to look.