The floor is among the most definitive cosmetic features within the interior of a home. It sets the stage for any design scheme and a tone for the overall aesthetic. A hardwood floor stands out as the most sought after choice for its natural welcoming feel along with the timeless beauty of the material. Most traditional or period homes will offer hardwoods that are original from the time of construction, but a majority of the newly built homes today provide laminate flooring.
Laminate flooring is fast becoming a popular choice among homeowners replacing carpet which has long ago lost its luster. Hardwoods boast being the diamond among floor choices, but for a more modest cost and a similar appearance, laminate brings more significant benefit. The laminate floors of today come in a vast array of styles and finishes, such as with timber-look laminate flooring, mimicking the look of hardwoods closely.
Advantages of Laminate Flooring
Over the years, laminate flooring has drastically improved, making it hard-pressed to tell the difference between hardwood and laminate. There is a laminate on the market to coincide with the wood of nearly any variety. It wasn’t always the case, but there is now a broad spectrum to choose from with this flooring. It is quickly taking over as the number one choice in a typical home over real wood and the high maintenance of carpeting.
** The installation process is fast and straightforward.
Floors of this kind are much easier to install than most other varieties, which is beneficial when it comes to the amount of time the house will be accessible. If the current subfloor is level and its in decent condition, you can apply this right over the top of existing vinyl, tile or real wood. That prevents having to demolish and do any prep for the new.
The ease of the project makes it ideal for the do-it-yourself enthusiast. The suggestion is to hire a professional, however, as they can assess the old floor to make sure it’s level and appropriate to apply the new over top of the old. You will be assured to get a finished look that is professional.
** Maintenance is superior to that of any other material.
With hard surfaces, you have a much simpler means to clean than with a material such as carpeting. Carpeting is slowly phasing out of homes, with most people opting to have it removed. The amount of maintenance that it requires is extreme, not to mention the potential for bacteria and health hazards if not kept professionally cleaned at least on an annual basis.
For laminate, sweeping or dusting are options for keeping dirt and debris off of the surface. Vacuuming will also prevent accumulations of dust that could potentially scratch or dull the finish. If you choose to mop this type of material, you don’t want to use a lot of moisture. It’s better to use a cleanser that is specific to the content or that would be used for wood and apply it to the mop as opposed to placing it on the floor itself. Spills need to be taken up right away with stains such as tar, marker, paint, ink, oil, wiped up using a clean white cloth with a small amount of nail polish remover followed by a clean damp cloth to get rid of the substance.
** Family-friendly floors as opposed to carpet or wood.
Hardwood flooring that goes through recycling and compressing results in these floors, albeit with a strong, solid topcoat. It’s tough and can handle the abuse that pets and children dole out. The benefit of this particular surface for families is that it has a topical coat or a layer that can tolerate wear that will make it scratch resistant.
As is true with carpet, allergens like pet dander and germs can settle themselves into the fibers. There is no worry about that with a laminate finish. Anyone who has an allergy won’t have to worry about it sinking into the protective coating on the surface. It is an attractive, allergy-friendly alternative to carpeting and wood.
** Budget-friendly option compared to any other choice.
The most significant advantage for homeowners with this particular choice is the affordability compared to wood. Carpet is going to be the overall least expensive to install, but in the long run, over time, laminate will be the most cost-effective choice due to the amount of maintenance required with carpet. Carpeting typically needs to be replaced approximately every five years for sanitary purposes and has to be professionally cleaned regularly. This material will last up to four times longer.
These supplies cost less than wood. They’re much easier to install, meaning the labor would be cheaper, making this the least expensive over either of the other options. Here are more advantages you may not have thought of.
Each person is different as far as the image they want to present to those who visit their home and the particular feel they want for those who live there. There are still those who stay true to carpet and many who will never let go of real hardwood. An increasing number of people love the look, appeal, cost, and lack of maintenance associated with the laminates. It’s a very personal choice. But once you make a selection and installation occurs, there’s no turning back. It’s essential to take your time and choose wisely.
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