Hardwood or Laminate Flooring?
Should you choose hardwood or laminate flooring for your home?
This is one of the questions we are most often asked by our customers. The decision over whether to have hardwood or laminate flooring can be really tricky, and ultimately as the person who will be walking on that floor for the next few years, you are the only person who can make the decision.
Choosing between hardwood or laminate flooring will depend on many different factors, such as price and the usage and requirements of the room your flooring will go into.
Hardwood flooring comes directly from trees which have been felled, cut and treated. Laminate flooring is also made from wood, but it is made from composite wood which is pressed together at a high temperature with an image of wood grain placed over the top with a laminate coating. Both have their pros and cons, and can be suitable for different areas in the home.
Here are three top points to consider when deciding between hardwood and laminate flooring in your home:
1. Where will the flooring be used?
If your flooring is to go in a high traffic area such as entrance hall or landing, you will want to consider how each type of flooring will cope with this. Hardwood flooring looks beautiful and can add considerable value to your home – but it is also highly susceptible to scratching and will show wear and tear quite quickly. It is also susceptible to water damage, so can quickly begin to look tired and messy if it’s in your bathroom or directly inside your front door.
Laminate flooring is made from pressed wood which has been laminated. This means it is often much more durable than hardwood. The laminate top coat means it is much more reistant to scratching and general wear and tear, so it can be ideal for places in the home that see a lot of foot traffic.
2. What is your budget for new flooring?
Hardwood flooring can be costly depending on the type of wood you use. As well as this, it can be more costly to fit a hardwood floor.
Because it is made from composite wood, laminate flooring costs less. Laminate flooring sections are usually made with tongue-and-groove fittings which mean they slot together fairly easily, and this means fitting a laminate floor will often cost considerably less than a hardwood floor.
When it comes to appearance, hardwood flooring will usually win out. You just cannot beat the look of a beautiful, natural hardwood floor. Hardwood flooring has a timeless appeal and will fit in with any existing decor. Hardwood can also take on different stains and finishes or a wax coating for extra shine. Hardwood flooring is truly unique to each space where it is fitted, with the knots and grains bringing character to any room.
You might think laminate flooring would pale in comparison to hardwood flooring, but it does have its benefits. We have mentioned durability above, which is a major selling point for many people. As well as this, the quality of laminate flooring is constantly improving with new technologies and techniques being developed. Modern laminate flooring can often be hard to distinguish from hardwood; the only tell-tale sign is that it is much more uniform than hardwood.