With warmer seasons on the horizon and more homeowners getting ready to remodel, one topic they’ll be researching is which type of flooring is best for their homes. Hardwood, vinyl, stone, and carpet are only a few of the floor types that clients will consider, but the variations in terminology can quickly get confusing.
It’s up to the remodeler to help educate the client on the pros and cons of the top floor trends. Sometimes what looks good isn’t always the best choice, but luckily there are a few top-notch trends that give the customer the best out of their investment.
1. Hardwood Floors, Where Gray is Still King
Hardwood floors, and similar wood-like floors, are a classic choice only gaining more popularity. The primary preference is for gray-toned wide planks, without too much sheen on the finish. However, the going-green trend is gaining on gray flooring.
As green trends increase, demand for wood flooring is likely to shift toward locally-sourced and sustainable materials. Consider what your remodeling business may have to offer. Do you have connections where you may use materials from past remodels, old barns, or other repurposed sources?
Lighter and softer woods pair well with both the natural and bold colors interior designers are showing their clients. With interior design moving more toward vibrant colors, flooring is following with extreme juxtapositions of light to dark contrast. Gray is still a special selection for clients in 2017, and hardwood floors will always remain a classic.
2. Luxury Vinyl is No Contradiction, it’s a Hit
Echoing the wood floor and sustainability trends, luxury vinyl is no contradiction, though it sounds like it. According to the World Floor Covering Association, it’s the quickest growing area of the industry in the last two years. Amazing photo technology has developed that makes it possible to very closely mimic wood grain. Clients and their guests will have to do a double take to tell the difference.
Luxury vinyl may be done in plank or tile, but plank is the more popular choice, with many pros and a few cons. The luxury plank vinyl is water- and moisture-resistant and may be glued in place. It’s also low maintenance, fiberglass reinforced, antistatic, affordable, and provides a natural look.
Though it has a commercial-grade wear layer, luxury vinyl may be punctured with very sharp objects. If your clients are interested in this type of flooring, please also inform them that it’s not biodegradable and will be tough to remove when glued down, should they change their minds later.
3. Stone Flooring is Durable and Timeless
Stone is as old as the Earth itself and was used to build countless beautiful buildings over the course of history. Today, stone is one of the top flooring trends that homeowners consider for a floor remodel, due to its low maintenance, customization, sense of luxury, and the fact that it’s long-lasting.
Stone flooring is primarily popular in kitchens, and the stats prove this: transform the kitchen, and the client can expect as much as a 7% increase in home value. There are many types of stone flooring that clients may consider:
- Granite: It’s best used in the kitchen and bathroom and is highly durable. Granite should be resealed every 18 months to two years.
- Soapstone: It’s primarily used as tiles in the bathroom and especially well-suited for cold climates.
- Limestone: Don’t use tiles near the shower, but use slabs for diversity in color and versatility for more contemporary-styled homes.
- Marble: Classic and beautiful aesthetically, this stone should only be used in areas of light foot traffic. It should be resealed every one to two years.
- Slate: This nonslip surface is great for indoor and outdoor usage, and tiles are ideal for kitchens and bathrooms. Larger areas should use slabs. Slate is also naturally stain and fire resistant.
- Travertine: Porous in nature, it shouldn’t be used around the shower, but adds a soft classic and contemporary style to smaller areas of the home, especially to add a sense of space.
4. Recycled Carpets Reclaim the Floor
Continuing the sustainability trend, recycled carpets—where old carpeting and plastics are recycled into fresh and clean carpeting for client homes—are popular. Since 2002, it’s estimated that 3.6 billion pounds of old carpet have been recycled.
Remodelers may encourage homeowners to recycle their old carpet for an upcycled upgrade from a carpet reclamation center. Remember, it’s bold color that clients are loving. Regardless of which trend the client is interested in, this idea will also improve the sustainability practices of remodeling businesses.
In addition to a floor that looks great, clients also deserve a floor that will stand the test of time, scrapes, moisture, and everyday wear and tear. Hardwood, luxury vinyl, stone, and reclaimed carpet each offer a unique set of pros and cons the remodeler will need to help the client navigate.
Keep in mind the importance of sustainability trends and practices as you speak with your client, and remember to always put their best interests first.