When looking to invest in a new floor, homeowners are often faced with the choice between authentic hardwoods and laminate flooring. Coming to a decision can feel overwhelming, as both options offer pros and cons. While authentic hardwood flooring is beautiful and desirable, many laminate options create a similar appearance. As with any home investment, you want to be sure it is going to bring lasting value to your home. To figure out the best option for you, consider the following pros and cons of each:
Cost – Hardwood flooring is made of real wood sourced from harvested trees. Pricing largely depends on what type of wood is used, but as a general rule, hardwood flooring is more expensive and harder to install than laminate.
Durability – Hardwood flooring is susceptible to scratching as well as moisture damage. In areas such as hallways and kitchens, the real wood can show significant wear over time.
Value – Hardwood flooring is beautiful and desirable! Depending on the type of wood, it can add significant value to your home.
Repair – Hardwoods can be repaired easily by simply sanding imperfections away and refinishing the wood. This allows your flooring to last for many years to come.
Cost – Laminate flooring is made from composite wood pressed together. The wood image is then placed over the composite. Both the laminate materials and installation costs are far less expensive than hardwood flooring.
Durability – Laminate flooring is more durable because it resists scratches as well as moisture damage. Laminate also does not show wear and is easier to clean.
Value – Laminate is not as visually appealing as hardwood flooring and, therefore, is less valuable to your home. Low qualities of laminate can also have a “fake” appearance or artificial wood-grain texture.
Repair – Laminate flooring is not easily repaired. If the flooring was installed in individual pieces, those pieces may be replaceable if damaged; however, they may not match the originals.
Adding value to your home is always a good idea! If you have hardwood or laminate flooring installed, don’t forget about the leftover boards or laminate pieces. Keeping a box of leftover pieces in a dry place in your home is wise in the event of a need for repairs.
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