Laminate flooring has long been one of the most popular choices among homeowners looking to replace their old, worn-out floors or give their homes a new look without too much hassle or expense.
These floors have so many great benefits, like durability and low maintenance costs, but they also have some downsides that you should know about before deciding if laminate flooring would be right for your home. Here are the pros and cons of laminate flooring to help you decide if it’s the right choice for you.
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What Is Laminate Flooring?
Laminate flooring comes in planks that look just like solid wood, but tend to be more affordable than solid wood. If you’re looking for an easy-to-install floor that will make your home look elegant, laminate is a great option. It can even mimic other types of materials including tile, slate and stone but at a fraction of their cost.
In addition to being affordable, laminate is a durable material that resists scratches and wear-and-tear well. Even if your dog spends all day dragging his toy car around on your new floors (don’t ask), they should still look good!
Laminate flooring is extremely easy to clean, stain-resistant, water resistant, scratch-resistant and made from 100% renewable materials. Its surface feels warm under your feet (some people compare it to standing on hot sand) but it’s not too hot or too cold. It comes in a variety of styles that mimic natural wood grains or even marble, granite and slate.
Plus, you can install laminate flooring without hiring an expensive professional (although some installation still requires help). These factors make laminate flooring popular for homes with children or pets as well as places where spills or damage happen frequently, such as kitchens and bathrooms.
Some people think laminate flooring is expensive, but it’s not that much more expensive than hardwood or vinyl. But, if you want a high-end look for your home, you might be able to get a better price per square foot with hardwood.
Maintenance and Care
Laminate flooring is a great choice for many homeowners because it’s often priced much lower than hardwood, tile, or stone floors. It also has a longer lifespan than most other materials—as long as 8-10 years in some cases.
There’s more upkeep to keep laminate looking its best over time, but depending on your budget, that might be an added bonus for you. As with any type of flooring material, high-traffic areas will show wear sooner than low-traffic ones. That said, keeping your floor clean should help extend its life significantly—no matter what material you have underneath it!
When it comes to installing laminate flooring, you have two options. The first is hiring a professional installer, costs are subject to circumstances. That will get you expertly installed flooring in just a few hours or less.
If money isn’t an issue for you, there’s really no reason not to hire a pro for your laminate floor installation project. If money is tight, though, check out our guide to DIY laminate floor installation. It’s very doable with basic tools and limited experience—and it will save you about 25-35% compared to hiring an installer. Either way, you should be able to complete your project within one day (ideally).
Laminate flooring has a longer lifespan than other types, such as hardwood or stone, since it’s so durable. It also doesn’t stain easily or scratch nearly as much, which means it can look new for longer. This is important if you have high-traffic areas in your home or your home doubles as a place of business.
The laminate’s durability can also save you money on replacement costs; you don’t have to worry about replacing laminate floors for quite some time. That said, there are still some drawbacks when it comes to using laminate floors in any room in your home. As mentioned above, they don’t absorb moisture well, which means they can be slippery when wet and cold during colder months.
Laminate flooring, despite being made from wood pulp, is actually quite durable. Some varieties may be susceptible to moisture damage, which could compromise their longevity, but overall laminate can stand up to a fair amount of wear and tear without much issue. Depending on how you use your space—and what flooring is already in place, laminate may be an excellent choice for your home.
If it’s a good fit for you, think about whether or not you want an unfinished look or if you prefer a more decorative finish. A variety of colors and patterns are available so it should be easy to find something that matches existing decor or blends well with newly purchased items.