If you’re in the market for a new kitchen floor, the good news is that you have a lot of options. The various design choices available in vinyl, tile and laminate flooring mean that you can find just about anything you want to match whatever you might have in mind. This freedom to choose is great—until you actually have to narrow it down to one final choice. What do you need to know to choose the best flooring material for you? Here are several things to keep in mind as you decide:
Know The Area
Before you can make any choice, you need to know exactly how much you need. If your kitchen is large, then that’s going to affect many things, including the cost and time of installation. Measure the space to determine the total amount of square footage you will be re-flooring. A good rule of thumb is to overestimate—remember that cutting a piece to fit does not mean you won’t need to factor in the size of the entire piece in your estimations. Also, if you have any islands in your kitchen, you might be tempted to deduct those spaces from your total, but don’t a little bit of extra material is always a good thing to have in case you need to replace a piece later on.
Determine Your Budget
In a perfect world, money wouldn’t factor into your decisions. We know this isn’t true, though, and unfortunately, we have to base a lot of choices on whether or not we can afford them. The size of your budget will play a huge role in what options you end up considering, but the good news is there are economical choices available for each type of material. Once you have an estimate for the amount of material you need, it’s easy to go through and see what that breaks down to in terms of price per square foot. Then it’s just a matter of sticking with an option that meets that price or lower.
Estimate Your Maintenance Needs
Another major factor to consider before choosing is in terms of maintenance. There are really two questions to ask yourself here. The first is how much wear and tear will you put on your floor? This is an important question. Remember that the kitchen is, in most houses, the most frequently used room. Everybody in a household is in the kitchen every single day—usually making several trips, often with dirty shoes. Because many kitchens are located next to side or backdoors. This only increases the chance for both foot traffic and dirt.
If you have pets, most likely this will be a popular destination for them as well. Wear and tear doesn’t just come in the form of traffic; it’s also determined by the messes that could happen. Food preparation means stains and spills, and the kitchen floor will see its fair share of both of those on a recurring basis.
A second question to ask is How much time do you want to spend taking care of this floor? This second question is really the most important, but it depends a great deal on the answer to the first. If you think your family will put a kitchen floor through its paces, then there’s a good chance you’re not going to want a high-maintenance floor. In that case, tile or vinyl might be better choices to consider, as they are generally easy to clean with a simply mopping and are generally more water-resistant than laminate.
If you don’t mind putting forth a little bit more effort, or you think your floor might not get all that dirty, then laminates can be a fine choice. Many laminates require a little more maintenance and special products to keep a natural-looking shine, which is why some homeowners stay away from them. Keep in mind, though, that not all laminate options are as water-resistant as you might think. Many of them improve their water-resistance as the price goes up, which is why knowing your budget from the very beginning is crucial to choosing.
A fourth factor to consider is longevity. How long do you want to be able to keep this floor? If you like to remodel every five or ten years, then durability is not as much of an issue. However, if you are hoping to keep this floor in good shape for decades, then this becomes a crucial factor. Many tiles scratch as they are used—by dragging heavy items or dropping utensils, etc. and this scuffing can become noticeable after time. A heavily scratched floor is not something you want to try and live with for the rest of your life! Other options can be scratch-resistant, or at least easy to replace.
As you can see, there are a lot of factors to consider. The good news is that for each one, you can find options in vinyl, tile or laminate that suit your needs. When you begin to look for flooring, know the answers to these questions. Our knowledgeable staff can help direct you to the perfect choices for you and walk you through the process of buying your next dream kitchen or at least, it’s floor. Contact us now to get quotes and more information on the flooring you want.