Help in choosing flooring

mzmercuryMarch 2, 2012

We are building a home from the ground up after losing everything in a house fire. Now at the tail end of the build, I'm having to choose flooring and I'm overwhelmed with choices. Here are the facts to consider:

5500 sq foot two story classical French home

Built on concrete slab on West Coast

4 people living in the home including two children 14 & 9

Very busy lifestyle so can't have high maintenance flooring

Frequent large parties so heavy traffic on floors

15 year old cat that has occasional accidents and 3 large dogs that are indoor/outdoor pets

Underfloor radiant mats to be used in a few areas of the home.

My children have allergies plus indoor animals means carpet is out. My initial thoughts were that I wanted to have travertine in the foyer and wood throughout the rest of the home. However, after reading so many great posts in this forum, I'm now concerned about dirty buildup in the beveling and noticeable scratching of the wood due to such high use from our family.

I'm not wild about using travertine throughout due to seismic activity in California and I'm worried about it looking too sterile and cold but I'm still open to it if anyone has experience with a product that has worked well for them.

If anyone has any experience with wood products that don't have issues with dirt build up or really noticeable scratching or know of any products made of other materials that might better suit a busy household but can still look high end and traditional, I'd love to know your experiences with them.

Thanks if you've read this far!

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Have you considered concrete staining or decorative concrete overlays? The options with this are endless and will outlast most other flooring types.

Here is a link that might be useful: Decorative concrete flooring

    Bookmark   March 2, 2012 at 11:53PM
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"Classical French Home"...what goes with that?

For durability in a wood flooring product, you cannot get much better than acrylic impregnated. Not too sure how much of that is being produced today. However, I still see it being used in mall stores and boutiques.

Actually, most flooring you see in commercial venues are durable products, so you ought to consider them. Decorative concrete flooring, as suggested by the previous poster, falls into that category. One flooring category that you see in commercial venues that I wouldn't recommend is plastic laminate...easy too install, easy to maintain, easy to remove, but not for an upscale home.

Then, there is genuine linoleum sheet flooring, such as Forbo's Marmoleum, that can be warm, hygienic and attractive. Borders and inlays can be done with it. You find Marmoleum in commercial interiors. And then there is Flotex Textile flooring, also distributed by Forbo, that is a hybrid product that is also warm, hygienic and attractive. Flotex can be a carpet-like material without the usual problems associated with carpet. Installed Flotex in a church hospitality area twenty years ago and it looks as good as the day it was installed. Have another church job using Flotex coming up next month.

Just some choices for you to consider that usually don't make it to usual distribution channels.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2012 at 3:13PM
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Travertine--or a porcelain lookalike-throughout would be the perfect stylistic choice. it will also be a functional one considering our allergy issues.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2012 at 3:25PM
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We put engineered hardwood in our kitchen We were concerned about wear and dirt so we selected a floor with aluminum oxide impregnated acrilic/urehane finish warranteed for 50 years (or possibly lifetime not sure which now). It had sharply square cut joints so no grooves or bevels to catch dirt. In three years there is no wear at all except where we where we dropped something heavy and made a little dent and a couple of small cuts from dropping something sharp. Also we spilled a bottle of super glue on it and didn't notice until it had dried. That has been a mess to scrape off. I already posted on this in a nearby thread.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 12:37AM
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Hi, I am setting up to fix solid 3/4" thick�hardwood�floor (Appalachian maple) in an upstairs bedroom. The sub-floor is 3/4" plywood. I am trying to decide what to put under the hardwood: rosin paper, roof felt, or aqua bar. Any opinions would be appreciated. Thank you.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 4:00AM
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I doing the TrafficMaster 12" X 12" linoleum tiles from Home Depot! Lifetime residental warranty and kind of easy to do but I been doing a lot of flooring for a while now - 15 years or more. I like the look for the kitchen. It looks just like the real ceramic tile but without the hassles of the install and cleans up very easily and easy to replace if damage!

The Building Inspector had to ask if it was real or not!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 8:04AM
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