There are a lot of flooring choices on the market today. If you’re getting help from a specialist, he’ll probably point you in the right direction. However, if you’re a home design DIYer, it’s important to know which flooring types work best in specific areas of the home before you begin. Here are the best choices, for eight different types of rooms in your home.
- Mudrooms and Entryways
Durability and easiness to clean are the most important features of flooring in an entryway. Ceramic or porcelain tile are good choices, though dark-colored grout should be used because light-colored grout will attract stains. Wood may also be a good choice, provided it’s a rugged and tough variety. Young bamboo or pine probably wouldn’t last, but something like red oak or Brazilian cherry would be a better choice.
Porcelain tiles are the classic bathroom flooring, but ceramic works well, too. Again, opt for a dark-colored grout so staining isn’t an issue. It’s best to avoid carpet, because it will continuously get soaked and even the most-careful homeowner will still bathe it in humidity. It quickly becomes a breeding ground for bacteria, and it will attract stains instantly. Those who aren’t keen on the chill of tile flooring can install a radiant-heat floor mat, or shell out a bit more for heated tiles.
- Kid’s Rooms and Playrooms
Carpet is the best choice for a noisy room, especially when children are likely to be roughhousing and tumbling. Many companies specialize in creating carpets that are not absorbent, and specialty underpads can be chosen that won’t mold or soak up moisture. Parents who are especially concerned about keeping the carpet looking new can opt for carpet tiles. Whether used in a uniform design, or selected to create a whimsical pattern, the tiles can be swapped out as needed. This way, the room is sure to outlast the messy days of childhood.
Carpet still reigns as champion of bedroom flooring, simply because it’s cozy on bare feet. People who are more likely to slip or who have mobility challenges may prefer to go with something like Berber, but plush can work for anyone else. Wood is still a popular choice, but it’s harder on feet and it’s cold, especially on a winter morning. It’s worthwhile to invest in a good rug around the edges of the bed if you opt for wood floors.
- Home Offices and Libraries
Wood is often the best choice, based on durability alone. If the room works double-time and serves as a guest bedroom, rugs should be added. A low-pile carpet is also a good choice, but steer clear of plush carpets that can be a nightmare with office chairs.
- Dining Rooms and Kitchens
It makes sense to keep the dining room and kitchen uniform, simply because they are used in a similar fashion, and the spaces flow into one another. Hardwood is probably the best option, though many people are choosing cork nowadays with success.
- Living Rooms
The living room is often the most versatile room of the home, and each family uses theirs differently. Wood is a great choice, and affords timeless beauty. However, families with small kids might want to opt for carpet, because it’s gentler for play and to sit on. Carpet tiles are a good option too, especially for those with kids and pets. If you go with carpet, it’s a good idea to look for something that’s stain-resistant, or that can be changed out easily.
- Stairs, Landings, and Hallways
Landings, hallways, and stairs are almost always done up with carpet, for several reasons. It provides cushion, so it’s gentler in the event of a fall, and people tend to make led noise as their feet hit it. Noises like wood creaking are also muffled. Plus, people tend to walk barefoot from the bedroom to the bathroom, and it’s cozy under feet. Generally speaking, most homes use carpet on all the spaces of their upper floors, for the same reasons. The only exceptions are bathrooms, for the reasons stated earlier. Although spills pet stains probably aren’t going to be a huge problem, it’s important to choose a carpet that’s designed for a high-traffic area.
A general rule of thumb is to avoid putting wood or carpet in areas that are likely to be wet or humid. After that, it comes down to durability, comfort, and stylistic choices.
Jason Greschuck is the owner of Stratford Price Painting & Capital and an active home improvement writer/blogger. Contact information is available on website. www.jasongreschuk.com