Flooring forms the basis of any internal scheme and with the many choices available it can be easy to get carried away and forget the practical aspects that must be taken into consideration. By their very nature, floors are the most used and therefore must be able to withstand knocks, spills and furniture, not to mention human and animal traffic. Buying a business plan may initially save you money, but it won’t last long, looking worn and dirty before its time. Flooring really must be seen as an investment and there are several options available to suit all budget levels. The first thing to decide is whether to choose hard or soft floors.
Tiles are a type of hard floor and are available in a wide range of natural and artificial materials. Ceramic, mosaic, slate and marble tiles are just some of the choices available and each has its own pros and cons. The main advantage of the tiles is that they are extremely resistant and if well maintained they will last a long time. Being waterproof, they adapt well to areas such as bathrooms and technical rooms and being easy to clean they are also ideal for kitchens. However, the tiles can be cold underfoot and can be slippery when wet, so they are not suitable where older people or children are present. If they have an intricate pattern, they can be difficult to adapt, as well as being expensive and semi-permanent. They are also noisy and require other softer surfaces to reduce the amount of echo in a room.
Wood floors are also classified as hard floors but being softer than tiles they are also warmer underfoot. With the wide range of natural shades available, they can help create a warm and familiar feeling and although they can be noisy, if “skipped” it can help reduce noise and add bounce to the floor. The downside of wooden floors is that they are usually made of coniferous wood and therefore can easily dent especially with the heels of shoes. Wooden floors are therefore more suitable for rooms that are not subject to heavy wear such as bedrooms.
The rugs are classified as soft floors and by their very nature create a sense of warmth and comfort. They can feel luxurious underfoot and are good for hiding stains and dirt. Strongly patterned rugs, however, can make a room seem smaller and will come out easily. Simple rugs on the other hand can make a room look bigger by creating a sense of space. In addition to being warm, the rugs also help reduce noise, while providing insulation while protecting against heat loss through the floor.
In addition to the above, there are many other types of flooring available such as natural flooring including jute and algae and concrete flooring. The key is to understand what function the room or area on which the floor will be used will be used and selecting the appropriate finish for this purpose. Once you’ve decided that you should always choose the best quality you can afford.
by Halina Sroka