3 Flooring Selection Tips for the Family Friendly Home
Deciding on the right wood flooring for your new home or remodel can be a daunting task.
You have many variables to consider, none more important than the family members – human or otherwise - who will be living in the home.
If you are planning a new wood floor for a big family we’ve provided you with three tips to select the right wood floor for your family friendly home!
Tip #1: Understand the Durability of Your Wood Floor
When it comes to wood flooring for a busy household the first question most people ask themselves is “is it durable enough to stand up to my kids and my dogs”.
So you want to consider how you will interact with your floor and vice versa. You also want to understand the inherent durability of each species or style.
Under normal living conditions, hardwood floors like Hickory and Oak wood flooring, are going to provide you with the most durable options. But not all Oak and Hickory flooring is created equal. Wood flooring from northern grown trees, and sawn from the heart of old timbers is actually harder and more stable than that of its southern grown counterparts. You can read more about the benefit of center-cut wood here. The wood flooring company, retailer or installer you are working with should be able to tell you the area from which your flooring came to ensure you are getting the best quality wood floor, and not a cheap knock-off.
Pine flooring is a good option for busy households who expect their floors to develop an aged, beat up look. They are fitting in historic restoration projects, or authentic reproduction homes. But you should expect that every rock stuck in your shoe, dog nail, or furniture moving experience will result in dings, dents and scratches. If you are buying a Pine floor, you should love these characteristics, if you are hesitant about this, then a hardwood floor is the best way to go.
Reclaimed flooring will also present an aged appearance, once installed. If you are considering an antique wood floor, you must understand it will have nail holes, sawmarks, and other character giving it a rougher texture. If you have little ones crawling around on the floor antique wood flooring may not be your best choice.
No matter how hard the wood is, or what the implied “lifetime warranty” is, no floor is 100% resistant to scratches, therefore the biggest question you need to ask yourself next is, “how easy is it to maintain”.
Tip #2 : How Easy Is your Floor Going to be To Maintain
The durability of a floor is measured by how easy it is to care for, resists day to day spills, shows scratches, and how often scratches might appear.
Scratches can appear from a variety of causes. Your son’s hockey skates, which he is not supposed to wear in the house. Your high heel shoes. Rocks stuck in your daughters field hockey cleats. You dog’s nail that just haven’t been clipped for a while. You can’t control every element that comes into contact with your floor – and why would you want to try!!! But you can control how you protect, clean and touch up the floor, by the finish you choose. You can also take steps to protect your floor in high traffic areas.
You can easily protect your wood floor with small throw rugs in high traffic areas especially at entries and mudrooms. You can install felt bottoms or other similar protective cushions under your furniture making it both easier to move and less prone to scratching the flooring surface. Lay down waterproof mats under dog bowls, and at entries where your floor can come into contact with water, dirt, and other outdoor elements that can scratch and slowly strip away the finish.
And because no floor is impervious to scratches you must choose a wood floor finish that can be touched up with minimal inconvenience – they do exist! Carlisle Custom Prefinished floors, for example, can be touched up in a matter of hours without any commercial sanding, either in a full room, or a spot application.
Tip #3 – Find a Versatile Floor that Will Fit any Style Room
When you are designing a floor for an entire room, your design style may be changing from room to room.
Your toddlers nursury, or your teenage daughters bedroom may look quite different from your Tuscan Inspired gourmet Kitchen. But don’t fret you can find flooring styles that adapt to your interior design, with no or minimal changes to the floor design.
There are many ways to use the same floor throughout a home – often saving you money because you are buying more flooring, and higher volumes may help you get a lower price. But you can adjust the flooring to suit each room, or find a color that matches the room regardless of the décor. Dark wood floors, for example go well with almost any décor.
If the sizing and natural lighting in your home changes from room to room, you may find you want to use lighter flooring in your bedrooms, and darker flooring in your main living room and kitchen due to their larger size.
Take Hickory wood flooring, for example. It is equally suitable in an ocean front home with a white finish, or the living room in a craftsman style bungalow.