white painted floors...

shannonazApril 4, 2012

This may be a bit out there...

my husband and I are in the process of buying a house from built in the 60s and remodeling. It has concrete floors covered in carpet and terrazzo. We have all hardwood in our house right now (BR-111 Amendoim) and it has been beautiful and held up well for the last 7 years. We enjoyed wood in our previous house also...

We don't like carpet or tile and I am not sold on concrete (it seems cold, hard and unforgiving) but my husband and I are both really digging the look of painted wood. It's not classic for our type of home or any type of home for that matter and I bet we would get sick of it.

We have probably 4000 square feet of flooring to replace in this house, so the cost adds up fast.

Could we install something dirt cheap and just paint it white? I know there are special paints etc.

What do you guys think??

contemporary living room design by other metros media and blogs Jeanette Lunde

traditional living room design by london interior designer Steeldaisy Associates

eclectic dining room design

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Sophie Wheeler

Why isn't restoring the terrazzo the ONLY choice here? It's a VALUABLE and DESIRABLE feature of any MCM home! It has panache and soul. It should NEVER be covered up by anything! To do anything else would devalue the home substantially. People go out of their way to find homes with terrazzo floors. It's a treasure!

Not only would installing wood on top of terrazzo be a huge mistake, but painted wood in anything but a colonial or beach house is a big style misstep. And expensive to boot. Painted wood is only a cheap choice is the wood is there and already worn out. If you have to install it first, it's not a cheap choice. And it's a WAY WAY harder to maintain than terrazzo. The traffic patterns lose their gloss first, and in a desert location with lots of grit, you can expect that to happen within the first year. Then you're stuck with it, because you can't go back and strip all of that paint off. You've got to paint again.

My mother had ugly brown painted floors in her bedroom in an old house, and it was an semi-annual thing to paint them again. Just part of the spring cleaning and freshening process every couple of years. And this was the days of only oil based paint. So every couple of springs, she would sleep on the couch for a week while the floor cured. White would show the traffic patterns a gazillion times faster, plus, well, it's plain WHITE, and it would be glaringly obvious that it was dusty or dirty. The only way to get any longevity out of painted floor is to have runners everywhere there is a traffic path.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 11:36AM
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Thanks Holly, that's what I suspected! Since you appreciate the terrazzo, maybe you can help me explore possible ways of keeping it :) I respect that the terrazzo is valuable and these floors are in flawless condition... but we are moving walls and can only keep the terrazzo in the rooms that aren't being disturbed...also, I am not too excited about the colors, but I can work around that. As of now we plan to keep the terrazzo in many of the rooms. One room that we don't need to disturb has a large gap in the terrazzo that is a dirt-filled indoor planter...I am not sure how to fill that it that would not look strange. I imaging matching or patching terrazzo is difficult? There is terrazzo in the kitchen- would it typically have been installed before, or after the cabinets?

The parts of the house that aren't terrazzo are carpet (it's all concrete covered in either terrazzo or carpet) we don't do carpet, so how would you handle the transitions or the flooring for the rest of the house?

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 12:05PM
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Okay, so I did a little research and since terrazzo is so widely used commercially (in my area, at least) there are companies that can successfully match and repair terrazzo...or at least they advertise as if they can...

Even if I keep all the existing terrazzo and add a little more, I have to figure out what to do in the rest of the house, I don't want terrazzo in the bedrooms.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2012 at 12:20PM
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Shannon - Where is this house? AZ? (as your user name implies)

Terrazzo with area rugs is a fabulous way to have a house in a hot climate, because they are so cool in the summer. My SO grew up in a house with terrazzo floors and they would walk in and lie on the floor to cool off.

In the winter you toss a couple more rugs down.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 2:27PM
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