Selecting new flooring for your home is exciting. Too many choices can be overwhelming. In our thorough guide, we’ll cover the most popular flooring types, the latest trends, and essential tips for floor selection. When restoring old floors or installing new ones in a makeover, knowing their pros and cons is essential. Consider your lifestyle, money, and décor goals to refine your selections. Read on ultimate guide to flooring types, top trends, and considerations when buying new floors.
8 Main Types of Flooring
You can choose from a few different types of top-quality flooring. We’ll go over each type so you can choose the one that works best for you.
1. Hardwood Floors
Hardwood floors have long been a popular choice for their durability, natural beauty, and value add to a home. Hardwood includes domestic woods like oak, maple, and cherry, as well as exotic imported woods like Brazilian cherry and bamboo.
- Beautiful, classic look
- Variety of color and grain patterns
- Can refinish and repair damaged areas
- Increases home value
- More expensive upfront cost
- Can dent and scratch over time
- Sensitive to moisture and requires climate control
2. Laminate Wood Floors
Laminate flooring simulates the look of real hardwood but is made from synthetic materials. The top layer is a photographic image of wood adhered to composite boards.
- More affordable than solid hardwood
- Easy DIY installation
- Very durable and scratch-resistant
- A wide variety of wood looks
- It cannot be refinished like real wood
- Not as high-end as real hardwood
3. Vinyl Floors
Vinyl floors have grown popular thanks to new luxury vinyl plank options. Vinyl is water-resistant, affordable, and easy to install.
- Budget-friendly cost
- Easy install for DIYers
- Durable and scratch-resistant
- Good for bathrooms and basements
- Easy to clean
- Can fade over time
- Not as high-end as wood or tile
4. Ceramic and Porcelain Tile
Tile floors are a classic choice loved for durability, easy maintenance, and customizability. Ceramic and porcelain are the most common kitchen and bathroom flooring.
- Highly water-resistant
- Easy to clean
- Long-lasting and scratch-resistant
- Design versatility with patterns and textures
- Hard, cold underfoot
- Dropped items can crack or chip tiles
- Grout needs periodic sealing
5. Stone Floors
Natural stones like marble, granite, slate, and travertine create a high-end, luxurious look. Each type of stone has a unique veining and texture.
- Elegant, upscale aesthetic
- Each piece is unique
- Withstands heavy use
- Keeps cool in warm climates
- Expensive upfront cost
- Needs resealing over time
- Can stain or etch
6. Concrete Floors
Concrete floors provide an industrial, urban chic look. New treatments create varied finishes, from polished to textured.
- Strong, durable, and long-lasting
- Minimal maintenance required
- Works with modern or industrial decor
- Doesn’t trap allergens
- It can crack if poured improperly
- Hard on feet without cushioning
- It can be cold in winter
7. Cork Flooring
Cork is a green, renewable flooring material harvested from the bark of cork oak trees. Cork Flooring has a soft, warm feel underfoot.
- Made from a sustainable source
- Natural insulation properties
- Comfortable and quiet
- Antimicrobial and hypoallergenic
- Softer and prone to indentations
- Needs sealants to prevent staining
8. Bamboo Flooring
Bamboo is a popular eco-friendly flooring option that has a similar look to traditional hardwood but is made from fast-growing grass.
- Sustainable and biodegradable
- Hard and durable, like wood
- Affordable cost
- Variety of plank styles and colors
- Prone to scratching like hardwoods
- The manufacturing process can impact eco-friendliness
Latest Flooring Trends
Flooring trends come and go, but some newer options have become quite popular for their appearance, durability, or environmental sustainability. Here are some of the top flooring trends right now:
- Luxury vinyl plank mimicking wood or tile with realistic textures and finishes
- Large format tile planks, like 24×48 inch porcelain tiles
- Mixed widths of hardwood planks for visual interest
- Exotic and reclaimed woods, like Brazilian walnut
- Dark, dramatic colors like black or charcoal-stained hardwood
- Enhanced realism in laminates and vinyl with texture and distressed looks
- Geometric patterns and mosaics on tile
- Concrete floor finishes like acid-staining, grinding, and polishing
- Eco-friendly cork and bamboo
- Carpet tiles for modularity
Tips for Choosing the Best Flooring Option
When deciding on new floors, keep these tips in mind:
- Consider your lifestyle and needs before selecting the flooring type for your place. Active households with kids and pets may benefit from more durable options.
- Think about the room function. Prioritize moisture resistance in baths and kitchens. Opt for soft carpeting in bedrooms.
- Review warranties and average lifespan for the best value.
- Choose hardwood grades rated for your use level. Top grades withstand heavier traffic.
- Measure moisture levels before installing any wood, laminate, or vinyl.
- Request flooring samples to view colors, styles, and textures.
- Hire a professional installer for the best results.
- Opt for low VOC adhesives and sealants when possible for indoor air quality.
The process of selecting new floors may seem daunting at first. But doing your research on the pros and cons of each flooring type, keeping current with trends, and carefully considering your needs and goals will help you make the perfect choice. With this ultimate guide to flooring providing an overview of all the options, you’re now equipped to start your flooring project! Reach out to flooring retailers and installers to find the right solution for refreshing your home’s floors.