Natural hardwood floors are an understandably popular option in both traditional and modern homes. With different finishes, plank widths and lengths, and other options to choose from, wood offers a nearly endless range of beautiful looks from classic to cutting-edge. But with advances in construction and design, homeowners desiring wood floors have also been able to choose from engineered wood products as well as wood-look ceramic tiles that look just as beautiful as natural hardwood. So which option is the best for you?
Natural hardwood, engineered wood, and ceramic wood each have advantages and disadvantages, so homeowners should choose carefully based on their budget, their lifestyle, and the intended location of the floor.
Natural hardwood: Many homeowners like natural hardwood because it feels warm underfoot, and because the solid wood construction allows it to be refinished many times over the life of the floor. This option can be quite expensive, however, especially for exotic or rare types of wood. In addition, wood expands or contracts when the environment of the home is more or less humid, so it can only be installed in parts of the home that are above ground and over wood subfloors, so it is not appropriate for a basement room. Natural wood is also relatively soft and easily scratched.
Engineered wood: Engineered wood, because of the way it is made, offers many of the benefits of wood while being less susceptible to humidity. It has a similar feel but tends to be less expensive than solid wood floors. However, engineered wood can only be refinished once or twice, and can still be susceptible to scratches. Some engineered wood is designed with a tongue-and-groove method of installation, like laminates, which permits a floating installation. These floors can be installed over both wood and concrete subfloors.
Ceramic wood-look tile: New designs and plank tile shapes have made wood-look tile an option to carefully consider. Unlike both natural hardwood and engineered wood, tile won’t be damaged by direct contact with water, so it can be used in a bathroom or the kitchen. The tile itself tends to be cheaper than wood or engineered wood, although the installation can be costlier than installing a wood or engineered wood floor. Ceramic tile is also far more resistant to scratches, so it is a durable option to consider if you have small children or pets. Do keep in mind that tile can feel cold underfoot, though.
When you’ve taken into account your budget, whether the floor will be subjected to humidity or water, and how hard your family is likely to be on the floors, your choice may be immediately obvious. Whichever you choose, however, you’re certain to find that you have a wealth of beautiful options that will enhance your home. To help you determine the best flooring for your remodeling project, contact the experts at Sea Pointe Construction today.