Home comforts: why choosing the right floor is so important

When redecorating or moving into a new home, choosing the right floor can be a daunting task. You need to decide which flooring is right for you – wood, laminate, cork, tiles, carpet or vinyl – and choose the colour scheme. Your floor takes a pounding from people walking across it, from spills, and from children or pets playing on it. It is a long-term investment; therefore, it pays to think ahead about the right floor for your lifestyle. Here are some ideas to start you off.

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Hard floor surfaces

Tiles are versatile, as there are many types and colours from which to choose, including wood effect. They come in a range of prices but installation will add to the cost, as they need to be fitted correctly. Tiles are hard-wearing and easy to clean, making them suitable for rooms with high traffic such as kitchens, dining rooms and hallways. They are also water resistant, making them perfect for bathrooms; however, they can be cold and loud to walk across.

Hardwood is another popular choice, as it looks stylish and is very hard-wearing; however, it is expensive to install and is not suitable in areas where water splashes around, such as kitchens or bathrooms.

If you love the look of wood, laminate is a great alternative to hardwoods. Again, it should not get wet, but it is perfect for high-traffic areas such as living and dining rooms. It is easy to clean and very durable. Laminate comes in a range of colours and types of wood, with oak a popular choice. Companies such as www.woodfloorwarehouse.co.uk stock a wide range of oak laminate flooring.

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Soft options

Cork is another natural material; therefore, it is environmentally-friendly. It is also warm, soft and absorbs noise; however, it can turn yellow over time and will swell if exposed to too much water. Cork works well in bedrooms due to its warmth.

Vinyl is inexpensive compared with some other floor types and is quiet to walk over. Although it can look like wood or tile, it can tear easily and is more difficult to keep clean.

Carpet is another soft and warm flooring option that is quiet to walk on, making it a good choice for bedrooms. It is also easy to install; however, it can trap dirt and become stained easily.