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2012-09-11 22:44:13

Things to consider before purchasing your new floor

Value or Look

Are you looking to add real value to your home which can help when it comes time to sell? If so, you may want to consider installing solid hardwood, engineered hardwood or even bamboo flooring, all of which offer both beauty and value to your home compared to laminate flooring that can also look good but does not add the value the other flooring options do.

Dollars

What is your budget? Determining your budget will give you a better idea as to what your flooring options really are. Laminate and bamboo flooring are great alternatives to solid hardwood for the price conscious consumer. Laminate flooring creates the illusion of hardwood floors and is available in a wide range of colours at the fraction of the cost. It is a high performance floor known to withstand higher traffic areas. Bamboo flooring is an environmentally friendly alternative and its inherent strength and durability is appreciated. Since bamboo is the fastest growing renewable resource, it makes it an affordable choice for homeowners.

Species

Each species of hardwood comes with its own unique characteristics. Color is determined by the species and from which part of the tree the wood is cut. Grain pattern is determined by the species and how the wood is cut. Natural variations in the color and grain are to be expected. Similar to natural stone, these variations combine to create your floor’s unique natural beauty. An important decision you must make when purchasing your new hardwood floor is what wood species you should install. Selecting the wood species will affect the overall cost and the finished look.

Installation

Installing Hardwood floors can be tricky if you do not have the right training. Brampton Hardwood Floors offers ways to save on hardwood flooring like free do-it-yourself installation seminars which will help you save a bundle on installation. If don’t feel you can do the job, ask your hardwood flooring supplier to refer you to a trained and certified floor installer.

Pre-Finished

Pre-finished hardwood floors come already sanded, screened and stained from highly efficient manufacturing plants. Multiple coats of urethane are applied on the hardwood boards which are then UV dried to create a lasting finish. (UV drying isn’t something that can be done at home.) Pre-finished hardwood floors can be screened and recoated in your home to rejuvenate their finish and revitalize their natural beauty.

Unfinished

Unfinished hardwood is installed, sanded, stained and then finished with 2-3 coats of urethane right in your home. Finishing on site can take a lot more time than installing pre-finished boards’ and can make quite a mess. But the result is a level of customization and uniqueness that can’t be found on any store shelf.

Humidity Control

Wood is a natural product that expands and contracts unevenly with changes in moisture and temperature. The result can be hairline cracks and/or minor variations in height or width. If you live in a wet climate, make sure your home is well insulated. If you live in a dry climate, consider the use of a centralized humidifier to minimize the effects of weather.

Application

Where are you installing it? Yes, obviously you should know what room(s) you’re putting it in, but also what you are installing it over? For instance, if you’re installing hardwood over a concrete subfloor, you can only consider glue-down options. And remember that the subfloor may vary by room, so don’t assume the application is the same for all. Main takeaway: figure out what’s under your floors before you start shopping.

Longevity

How long do you want your flooring to last? If you plan to stay in your home for a long time, purchase one that is durable, stain resistant, and has a long warranty. It’s a worthwhile investment and will save you the money associated with costly repairs and replacements. On the other hand, if you’re planning on reselling in the near future, you can probably focus less on the product’s longevity and more on aesthetic appeal. Pretty floors can really help sell your house.

Traffic pattern

This has nothing to do with whether your home is on a main thoroughfare. Traffic pattern refers to foot traffic and where movement takes place in your home. If there are a lot of people walking through your living room or down the steps to your basement, you should install flooring in those areas that can withstand all of the activity.

Where to Shop

It is important to remember that all floor stores aren’t created equal. They may all sell flooring, but the products they carry, the services they offer, the price points and the customer service will not be the same. To get knowledgeable advice about hardwood and you live in or around the Toronto area, it is best to visit a specialized retailer such as Brampton Hardwood Floors. Brampton Hardwood Floors is known to have the largest selection of in-stock quality hardwood flooring at discounted prices.

Colour

Look at your home and think about what flooring colors will work best with your walls, cabinetry, fixtures and furniture. Neutral colors are always a safe bet (especially if you’re planning to sell your home) because they match pretty much everything.

Wearability, Durability

The flooring you purchase needs to be able to hold up under the wear and tear of your household’s everyday activity. Deciding on a flooring product with a longer wear warranty for higher traffic environments is your best assurance against premature wear and tear.

Design Style

Is your design style contemporary, traditional, or transitional? Think about the look you’re trying to achieve and make sure your flooring fits your style. Don’t worry so much about the hottest trends and fads. Instead, focus on the products that YOU like. The person who really needs to be happy with your floors is you.

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