Don’t look at your house as a whole; consider each room individually based on its function and this will make it much easier to select the right type of flooring. Your hallway, for example, is a high traffic area, people are in and out all the time, wearing their shoes, if you have dogs, or a pushchair, you’re going to need something hard-wearing and washable. It comes down to more than simply looks. Below are the most popular types of flooring, their pros and cons, leaving you to decide on a personal level, which rooms they’re best suited to.
There’s no denying the beauty of a real wood floor, the different grains and shades, imperfections adding to its natural beauty and unlikely to ever go out of fashion, it’s a classic. It’s sturdy and long-lasting, is warmer under foot and looks great. However, in an area with moisture, solid wood boards can move, if you live in a flat I would avoid as it is a noisy floor and it can scratch and stain. In the busy areas such as in front of the sink, or oven it will show wear and tear. Yes, you can re-sand and stain it, but, it is a pretty messy process.
There are a few types of flooring tile, the main two being ceramic or porcelain.
Porcelain tiles are pretty maintenance free, extremely hard-wearing, it’s very difficult to chip or scratch and is extremely hygienic as it can be cleaned with anything. That being said, porcelain is cold to stand on for any period, can be extremely slippery when wet, and if a chip or crack was to occur they’re unrepairable on an individual basis.
Ceramic tiles work out cheaper than porcelain, they come in a range of designs and, like their more expensive relative, are hygienic and easy to clean too. However, they aren’t quite as durable as porcelain and so need to be laid on a completely flat, solid floor or they will crack. Again, they are cold under foot and chips will be more obvious as the colour is only on the surface.
This is a great budget-friendly option and comes in a vast choice of finishes, replicating woods, stones, mosaics. It is easy to clean and water resistant. The thin, hard vinyl is very robust but if you opt for the thicker, spongier type be wary that it can dent. It is comfortable to walk on and can even be laid on top of an existing floor. But, vinyl does have a relatively short life-span, it will fade when exposed to strong sunlight and, if damaged, it is unrepairable, so you must be careful.
Carpet can be as inexpensive or extravagant as you want it to be. In many different colours and patterns, it’s a go to option for most rooms in the house. Comfortable and warm under foot, a lot of carpets are now durable and can be cleaned or even stain resistant. Not a good idea in the bathroom where it will absorb moisture and become damp and mouldy in time, or the kitchen due to food spillages and oil.
There are, of course, more flooring choices to consider, these are simply a selection of the more commonly used options. Remember to consider the logistics but don’t choose something you don’t like just because you’ve read it serves a better function. You have to live with it after all.