is anyone else tired of wood flooring?

ma_rciaAugust 11, 2009

We have had wood floors in the last two houses and while they look very nice and have all the other advantages, they do scratch, dent, and show every drop of water etc. I know it would be very bad for resale and I guess I am going to get a lot of flack, but I will be brave and say it...I like vinyl flooring. There are very few if any seams and you can mop it all you want. It doesn't show dirt, scratches, and dents as much. We are getting ready to build a house and I am unsure about the flooring. What do you think? Am I nuts? You can say it!!

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Nope, sorry--I adore wood floors! One of the reasons we waited so long to find our house was that I wanted it to be all wood except maybe kitchen and baths, and that's what I finally got!

on the other hand, your are building a house--make it what you want!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 2:11AM
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Nope, you're not nuts. I can see why you would want vinyl if you have a lot of dogs that scratch up wood. Several people have put in Novalis wood plank vinyl flooring throughout their homes. If you google it over on the flooring board, you can find a thread with a lot of pictures. I have that flooring in my kitchen and I love it, it's so practical. One friend of mind did a very expensive vinyl wood plank from some British company throughout her entire new home. I can never remember their name. It looks very much like a real wood floor... but upkeeps like the vinyl it is. Oh, Karndeen is their name. There are others... you might want to snoop the fake wood vinyl floor options pretty hard before you make up your mind. I think every year they get more realistic looking. There are also vinyl floors that look like tile, of course.

Vinyl isn't generally good for resale. So if you want it, I'd put it in and enjoy the heck out of it, but then either replace it or give a buyer a flooring allowance when you do sell.

Up till then, it's your house! Put whatever you like on your floors and enjoy them. As long as you are happy, that is what counts.

As for me, I'm still very much in love with my wood engineered floors. I got the "hand scraped" look, fairly rustic maple in a maple syrup color. It has quite a bit of flaws look to it, so it doesn't show every little scratch. But I do admit vinyl is the easiest of any floor to keep looking nice.

You might also want to ask your question over on the flooring board, and give them a couple of weeks to answer over there.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 3:30AM
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We live in an old Victorian farmhouse and will be replacing the flooring in our kitchen soon. The kitchen is in a newer part of the house, so there's no wood under the current vinyl, just OSB. We'll be looking into the wood-look vinyl.

I'm with you, Marcia, vinyl is so easy to take care of and looks great for a long time. We don't need to worry so much about resale value as this isn't a "normal" showplace suburban home, it's much more functional since dirt and other stuff is constantly tracked in from outside.

I also like the slightly dimpled look of vinyl - it hides a ton of small flaws. Some friends just installed acres of wood-look laminate flooring but it's perfectly flat and smooth. When you enter the home, you walk down a loooong hallway towards the kitchen and living room and huge windows. Every tiny bit of dust and dirt and water spot is highlighted on the huge expanse of flat, smooth, shiny floor.

Too bad our current vinyl is so dated looking -- it must have been high quality stuff since 20 years of hard use hasn't fazed it except in spots where it's been ripped (by appliance feet) or discolored by the sun or rusty furniture feet. A quick mop with a cleaner followed by a coat of Mop-N-Glo (sp?) and it looks amazing.

If you like vinyl, go for it!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 7:40AM
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I find wood flooring a constant attention requirement. Given the choice would go with tile in Kitchen and Bath, at least water wouldn't be an issue. The hardness of both is becoming an issue though with old age creeping in.

But, people love the wood floors and depending upon the type/finish, they can take a beating. My bath and kitchen are original flooring, the rest of the house was a new installation. New doesn't show wear at all. The last house had definite wearing at the doorways and heavy traffic areas. Getting the best install is obviously the key.

Whether wood flooring will change as a decorating style should be interesting. Akin to solid kitchen counter materials. As all have said, doing your own thing is what will make your home. If you sell someday, it can always be changed.

I'm amazed at the tile/wood combination sqaures and how much it looks like tile. Has anyone used this? It looks like an easy upkeep, but water would appear to be a problem.

One of my loved sights was a house that had poured/buffed concrete floors throughout. It also had infloor heating coils. Haven't seen this used again, although they did a beautiful job on it. One has to like rustic....

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 8:04AM
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Me too. The first thing I do with wood flooring is lay area rugs and runners to cover them.

I like the way carpeting traps dog fur so that it doesn't fly around the room when the ceiling fan is on.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 8:25AM
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I am new to the "wood floor world" so i am loving them. We are doing a strand bamboo floor, so it is pretty darn durable as far as scratches and dings go...but yeah, they do seem to get dusty and in our bedroom, I notice they looked smudged up from walking on them with bare feet. I don't really notice that in other rooms of the house, it has something to do with the windows/lighting in our master bedroom.

Honestly, I am kind of "er" granite countertops, and everyone thinks I am nuts, but we are doing a waterloxed butcher block in our kitchen. I am just kind of sick of granite.

So that is the beauty of doing a house for yourself, making it what you want!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 8:35AM
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If the choice is between carpet and wood, I say wood every time. With two dogs and kids, I got so tired of having to spot clean that carpet. Wood with poly is so much easier to keep clean.

Vinyl in a kitchen might be better though. So many potential leaks--dishwashers, ice dispensers, faucets. My experience with the "dimpled" vinyl is that the dirt would get down into the dimples and was really difficult to keep clean IMP. I think the newer vinyls might not have that problem.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 9:30AM
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I must be doing something wrong because I find wood floors easy upkeep. Mine get a weekly vacuuming, a going over with the dustmop and only occasionally, a damp mopping. If we have any scratching, it's not noticeable. We do use protective pieces on all furniture legs. I've never had water spot issues, and only one *dent*, and that is where I somehow dropped a heavy iron finial when moving it from the mantel.

It's only my husband, myself and one less than 10 lb. dog. I'm sure children and larger pets could make a difference on the floor. I find my tile more upkeep than hardwood - same with carpet, which after pulling up once, I will never have that again. I don't feel like it is ever really *clean*.

That said (sorry - didn't mean to write a book!), IF YOU LIKE VINYL, then that's what you should have in your home. I do believe it will affect the resell of the house, but like someone said, if you're going to live there, enjoy it and have what YOU want.


    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 10:16AM
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I'm with you! I'm so over hardwood floors. Perhaps because back in the early eighties I pulled up all my wall to wall carpet and have been living with hardwood floor ever since. Now that hardwood is everywhere I'm getting tired of it. When I was in a carpet store, I was amazed at all the beautiful high end carpet. Around here it is either hardwood for an upscale look or builder grade carpet in some dirt color. I think its those builder grade carpets that are giving carpet a bad reputation. And carpet is soft, warm and quiet underfoot.

I like vinyl too. Its comfortable underfoot and easy to clean. I just wish manufacturers would make more colors and patterns that don't try to look like something else--wood, stone or tile. Vinyl can be any color and any pattern so why not give us more unique patterns and colors? Linoleum is nice as a (slightly) more eco-friendly alternative to vinyl and it doesn't try to look like anything but linoleum.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 10:43AM
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I guess there is no perfect flooring.

I like my wood, but it is only in one main room and hall and it isn't a year old yet. I much prefer it in the hall over carpet because the carpet looked so bad so fast there with the constant walking through the middle. Wood did get scratched a week after putting it in.

I had vinyl in kitchen, laundry, and baths and hated it. It dented under the chair legs and ripped in front of the refrigerator. It yellowed in the bathrooms.

I have tile now in kitchen, laundry, and entry and hate cleaning grout, plus a few have cracked over the years. It's about 15 years old.

I have stained concrete in an office and it has a worn spot under the rolling chair. 4 years old.

I have pile carpet in the bedrooms and it is beginning to show wear in the traveled areas, as well as dirt. 11-12 years old.

I have berber in the den which so far hasn't shown any wear or signs of dirt but it does have permanent dents from furniture. 5 years old.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 11:08AM
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I have had hardwood for two years, and love the maintanence of it. I hate dragging out the Vacuum cleaner. I had vinyl for 23 years, yes it is easy to care for to a point. Eventually like hardwood, the finish will ware off, and will need to be replaced. Yes there have been alot of different patterns over the years for vinyl, but it does eventually go out of style. I am all into doing what is right for you family. We bought an outdated home, and are gradually re-doing the rooms to our taste. The kitchen and foyers were all different types of flooring. Mary

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 12:34PM
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I love wood floors. I think (sorry) carpeting is disgusting. I can't even imagine what is growing in it. I guess I have had one too many sciences classes.

BTW, I wash my wood floors all the time. I do like vinyl in concept, and I have it in one bathroom, but that is the way the house came to us.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 1:16PM
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Had wood floors when I was a kid. "I" got to wax & polish them!!! I love carpet or rugs that cover wood floors or tile!!! In a kitchen or bathroom I want to pour clorox on the floor.....I like the idea it kills some germs.....:0) Wood floors, wood ceilings, wood on the walls....not!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 1:33PM
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Tired of wood flooring? Not even sort of. I've had hardwood in most rooms in most homes, kitchens and laundry rooms included. Easy to take care of, patina makes them better and when the finish segues past patina to worn, it can be refinished. In fact, we have w/w in our master and I WISH we had hardwood - vacumming/cleaning carpet beneath a king sized bed is not possible and I know all kinds of nasties lurk in that carpet. With hardwood and a swiffer it would be a piecs of cake.

If I ever have the chance to build, it'll be with sustainable woods on the floors.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 1:35PM
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I like wood but I picked wood look vinyl planks for my kitchen, laundry room and eating area. It's Amtico. I had vinyl before, first sheet and then vinyl tiles. I guess they were low end because they got hundreds of nicks. They were also hard to clean.

Amtico always looks good. I've had it over 4 years with out a single nick. It is also very easy to clean.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 1:45PM
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You should look at the wood plank look or woodgrain ceramic tiles they have out now! I think they look like the best of both worlds. Very small grout lines too!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 3:45PM
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ummmm, nope, love my hardwood floors and can't ever see that changing. They are just the cat's meow in my book!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 3:50PM
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There's an "I love vinyl flooring" thread here - I'm actually going to revive it because there's a couple of questions to me that I missed! :-)

oceanna, Karndean flooring is not terribly expensive - granted, it's not a buck a strip like the Novalis, but it's on par with midline sheet vinyls. When we priced it it was around $5/sf installed for their midgrade product (the Van Gogh line, IIRC; I still have the sample book upstairs because we'll probably use it for the full bath whenever it gets remodeled). They make waaaaay-cool decorative elements like inlays and borders to go with the planks and parquets (it also comes in stone and tile patterns as well as wood). The Walmarts here use Karndean flooring because of its durability. Amtico is out of England and is usually quite expensive - often considered top of the line in non-sheet vinyl flooring.

nicole, it's a fairly rare wood floor these days that requires waxing. Most modern finishes are specifically "no-wax". Also, just dumping straight clorox on the floor does jack squat for disinfecting; a 10% solution (1 part bleach to 9 parts water) is FAR more effective, although a 10% solution of plain white vinegar in water does just as well and is better for both you and the environment.

I like vinyl flooring quite a lot but I'll say flat out that I outright hate sheet vinyl. It scratches, gouges (don'tcha just love that ripply triangular gouge from someone pushing something heavy like a fridge across the floor?), discolors, stains, peels... Patches (even expen$ive profe$$ionally done one$) eventually become painfully obvious. Sheet vinyl can mask serious water damage, as has happened in our current house when the dishwasher sprung a leak - there was only a little trickle of water on the surface but the plywood subfloor has delaminated. I much prefer vinyl tiles or strips, which bypasses a lot of these problems and look infinitely better than they did even 5 years ago if you pick something nice.

My wood floors are approaching 110 years old. Of course they're scarred and banged up - but so's the rest of the house. Shiny new anything looks outright stupid in this tatty ole place! :-) However, in my previous house I DID have shiny new wood floors installed and I didn't find them to be at all difficult to maintain either. At the time we had both a cat (whoever said shorthaired cats shed less is full of it) and a long-haired, double-coated dog (aka a self-propelled ball of fluff that explodes twice a year), and hard floors are just easier in that situation IMO. Quick swipe with a dustmop to pick up the bigger dustbunnies, another quick going-over with the wood floor cleaner spray (the dealer gave us a bottle and the stuff lasted forever) on a microfiber mop, all done. I did sort of have an "ahhhhh" moment when it got the first scratch, it's like "now I don't have to panic anymore". Maybe it's just that I don't have the laser eye that focuses on every speck of dust, tiny ding, or droplet of water, or an obsession with everything being (or at least looking) new and perfect that a lot of folks here do have.

I do shudder to think what would have happened had we gone with the Karndean in the last house instead of real wood as we came very close to doing, though - we had a hard enough time selling it as it was. We knew we were going to be selling the house eventually, just not as soon as it ended up happening.

I can tell you that when we can afford to do it the upstairs carpet will be torn out and there will never, ever be w2w carpet in a home of mine again. I've taken up w2w in several houses and IMO it's disgusting stuff even with vacuuming and steam-cleaning and fuss. Hard floors and area rugs for me - area rugs can be taken out and sent to the cleaners when they need it.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 4:11PM
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Not me.

We have carpet in part of the upstairs and were just talking about changing out at least the hall to HW. The carpet is already showing wear.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 4:11PM
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I think, like others have said, it depends upon the type of floor, the finish, the install, your lifestyle and your tastes.

Case in point: I lived in an older home with wood floors in the living areas and vinyl in the kitchen. I shared this home with one other full-time adult, many part-time adults and a changing chihuahua population (a peak population of 20 but generally around 12) of all ages - from newborn puppies to seniors (so yes, some accidents happened). Maintenance / upkeep of the floors was about equal and the wood floors always looked better. Never had a problem with water spots.

I'm in a new home now which I share with my husband and our three chihuahuas (two of whom were part of the newborn puppies from the previous home). We have carpeting and vinyl. This is being ripped out and replaced with hardwood everywhere except the bathrooms (we're still negotiating what to put there).

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 4:14PM
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It depends on what you have had and are tired of. I just added wood because it is reliable. When the carpeting got old from the previous owners I was wishing I could just tear it up, but I couldn't because there was just plywood underneath. If I want to go back to carpeting in 10 years I can lay it over the wood with no problems but when the carpeting gets old, or I am so over the color, I can tear it up and replace it, or the wood is there, I won't HAVE to spend a ton of money to change it. Wood can be refinished but vinyl and carpeting can't. It adds value to your house whereas vinyl and carpeting doesn't.

I would use vinyl in the in the kitchen and maybe a bath if that is what you like, as long as replacing it when it wears or becomes dated won't be a problem. I really wouldn't use it in any other rooms. You can always carpet over it later if you want, but will still have the option of going back to it and have the added value to your house.



    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 4:22PM
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Nope, not tired of my wood floors. Easy to care for...even in the kitchen nothing shows on the red oak. As for traffic, it's just me and two cats. They love how things skitter across the floor.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 6:51PM
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Personally, no, I'm not tired of our wood floors. After close to six years I'm still wanting to add them in our carpeted bedrooms. But then I love wood in pretty much all forms. I have an album on photobucket filled with pictures of wood grains. I love wood. It's one of the most beautiful of God's creations. And when I think of how my Mom used to wax and buff the wood floors in our fifties built home I feel more than blessed to use my dyson to vacuum them and my Bissel steam mop to clean them. When they need a bit of polishing we got some great cleaner made in a near by city that with a spray and mopping it looks as good as new. If I didn't have four cats and a grandson that spills the last task is all I'd have to do.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 7:09PM
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We have stone (travertine) in public areas of the house and hardwood in the bedrooms. The bathrooms also have stone. Would not do anything differently. Why would you get bored of wood? It is gorgeous, easy to maintain (no shoes house, mostly), clean.
The travertine holds up to traffic very well. maintenance is easy. no stains or scratches.

Sorry, vinyl flooring belongs in hospitals (you asked so i am telling) :)

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 7:20PM
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I love wood floors, though ours do get scratched up despite my putting protection under all the furniture. I have learned to say, oh well . . .part of life, part of living.

We have vinyl in the kitchen (PO put it in) and while it certainly is far from breathtaking, I love that it is easy to care for. Ditto for the Formica countertops!

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 11:07PM
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Thanks everyone for your opinions. It is interesting to read other experiences with different flooring...and nice to see I am not the only one who likes vinyl. The jury is still out but you have given me things to consider.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 11:39PM
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Well Marcia, we have different circumstances in each of our homes, not to mention different tastes, so it makes sense that we prefer different floors too. It's all good. If we all had the same tastes we wouldn't have so much fun here viewing others and sharing our own homes. Right? :^)

    Bookmark   August 11, 2009 at 11:58PM
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There are people who really like deeply colored carpeting. My friend, Colleen, paid a lot of money for a deep teal carpet throughout her new house 5 years ago. When they put it up for sale 2 years later, I figured they would have to recarpet or something, but no---someone bought it at their price, even with deep teal carpet and pink floral wallpaper!
My point? Whatever you like you should do. If that's vinyl, then, do vinyl. My mom just put down new vinyl peel-n-stick tiles a few years ago and they Love it. It looks good and is nice for them. For me, I prefer the wood. And for resale, if that's your focus, you might do better with wood. But who knew that teal carpet would sell? Not me!
And on the issue of upkeep? Well, that's a personal issue that totally hinges on two things: How much Time you have to devote to floor care, and How much Interest you have in keeping something for it's beauty. Personally, I would rather spend an extra hour housecleaning, to have pretty wood floors and nice upholstery, and glass table tops. Some people would feel the tradeoff in time & attention just too much.


    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 1:08AM
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I grew up with wood floors and love them now. I'd love to have real wood throughout my home, but I have carpet in my bedrooms, tile in the bathrooms, and laminate everywhere else. I'm dog shopping and think that the laminate will do well for the little guy (if I ever pick one).

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 8:47AM
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My girlfriends mother is trying to sell her home, it has wood floors.....poorly done! The wood shrank after installing, so the builder filled the cracks with putty then polyurethened over it all!!! WOW! It looks like a mess!!!!

DH's boss had wood flooring installed, it shrank. It was a battle to get it torn out & redone. We live in a dry climate.

I'm sure those are isolated incidents.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 9:29AM
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"My girlfriends mother is trying to sell her home, it has wood floors.....poorly done! The wood shrank after installing, so the builder filled the cracks with putty then polyurethened over it all!!! WOW! It looks like a mess!!!!

DH's boss had wood flooring installed, it shrank. It was a battle to get it torn out & redone. We live in a dry climate."

Their dealers and installers were clearly NOT on the ball (I was going to say something much less nice but decided to be a good girl today, maybe because I'm wearing a snazzy swimsuit and bright purple shorts despite my fat butt LOL). Even I, an ordinary dumb Jane Doe, know that wood flooring needs to acclimate in the environment in which it is to be installed for a period of time - several days at the minimum, a couple of weeks is better - before installation so that the moisture levels in the wood can approach that of the surrounding environment, since the wood may well have been shipped in from a place with a significantly different climate. If the flooring is packed in boxes (especially if the boxes are lined or covered in plastic!) the boxes should be opened to allow some air to circulate. Upon delivery the flooring should be taken out of the boxes or bundles and restacked so that there is better air circulation to the wood - a loose "log cabin" stack is best by far but there's rarely enough space to do that in an average house. This also gives the buyer an opportunity to examine the material and check for damaged pieces, quality control issues, etc. before installation begins. We were tripping over stacks of wood for about three weeks when we had our wood floors done in the last house but it was WELL worth it. This is not rocket surgery and shame on those dealers and installers.

BTW, in extreme climates, either very dry, very wet, or with radical swings between, engineered hardwood flooring is much more stable WRT shrinking, twisting and cupping than solid wood because of the cross-grain construction. That's why we had chosen it, because NH is cracklingly dry in the winter and positively malarial in the summer. (And then what do I do? I move to an old house where the gaps between some of the pine floorboards approach half an inch in the winter and some of the widest boards - well over a foot wide - are visibly "humped" from the horribly soggy spring/summer! LOL)

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 11:13AM
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I must say I like my h/w in the living room and bedrooms. But in the kitchen - give me vinyl (sheet vinyl, full glue). When I replaced my vinyl 2 years ago, I foolishly put down 'no glue'. I promptly tore it by dragging a loveseat across the floor! The 37 yr old vinyl I had just removed could have taken that lickin' with no sweat! I have tile in the bathroom and really love it - but if you love high heels - tile is not such a good choice (too slippery).

    Bookmark   August 12, 2009 at 3:29PM
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I have mostly lurked on the GW for a while trying to figure out what floors I wanted to put down...both what you all say here and on the flooring forum. Well, I finally put down a good quality tile in my entrance, through my family room and into the attached kitchen, pantry and back door. We have a big golden retriever that sheds tons. Then, I put down prefinished solid red oak in the dining and living, down our hallway and bedrooms. Tile in Bathrooms. It came out beautiful. I chose high quality manufacturers and went through a local floor company who hires good installers and everything is warrantied. It was more expensive probably, but both the tile and wood installers commented that it was nice to have a good product that went together well, fit, etc. no warped tile or wood pieces. AND, my floors are beautiful, I love them. So easy to keep clean. I use a long twist microfiber mop and castille soap on the tile. Oh, and I used quartzloc (sp?) grout that won't stain. On the wood I use the Method microfiber mop and wood cleaner. I vacuum every day because of the doggie, but so much easier than carpet and my house smells so good now! I just couldn't keep the carpet clean enough. Hope this helps. Rachel

    Bookmark   August 13, 2009 at 3:57PM
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I prefer wood flooring to anything else. I like the look and the feel underfoot, it lasts practically forever, is low maintenance, and goes with everything.

I have tile in my entry; I don't care for the design (PO's choice) and it is slippery when wet and just too hard and glass-like for me.

I have vinyl in the bathrooms (planks in one, tile in the other) and sheet vinyl in the kitchen. The planks are fairly new, and look okay, but the vinyl tiles show grime between the edges and look very cheap (another PO choice.)

The sheet vinyl in the kitchen is in terrible shape; dented, gouged, and stained - and ugly since day one.

The wood floors in my house are about 70 years old. I think wood gets better with time, like a pair of jeans - scratches and holes add character. Time is not friendly to vinyl. Eventually, I'll have all wood in my house.

I do see a lot of new houses with very dark wood floors; most of them have that sort of bevel along the edges. If that is what you are picturing when you think of wood, I don't blame you for not choosing it. But there is a practically infinite choice with wood floors; I prefer solid wood in mid-tones.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2009 at 4:19PM
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I have never really cared for hardwood floors. They are cold and loud and I think the homes I've been in have been echo-y and feel more like a gymnasium. My mother came from the "olden-days" and says hardwood was the poor man's floor.

I love the warmth of carpet and I love walking on it. It makes a house so much more a home. Wood is good as an accent but put down everywhere it seems cold to me. Many of my friends are also changing their minds about them and going back to carpet; or stone for rooms like the kitchen.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 10:06PM
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I adore wood floors - real hardwood floors have been as low maintenance as vinyl to me. Just vacuum frequently and damp mop occasionally. Wood is warmer than tile and easier on the feet and back.

However in our current townhome, real wood was not an option. Laminate was an option but I needed to install it myself (budget) and I have seen and heard DIY laminate gone wrong - the snap crackle pop that can happen with a bad install and uneven subfloor - and we didn't like the fact that it is so vulnerable to water damage.

So we went with vinyl plank "wood". It's still not preferable to me over real wood but for the price (80 cents/sq ft, product appears to have been discontinued by Lowes so maybe it was a clearance) it really could not compare. It was so easy to install, spills and cat hairballs wipe right up, and it has actually fooled many visitors into thinking it was real wood - or at the very least, high quality professionally installed laminate. Most people think it is real wood because it doesn't feel "hollow" like laminate and it doesn't occur to them it is vinyl.

You may want to check this out, the exact product we used is no longer available but it is called Surface Source chestnut vinyl floating plank (lowes has apparently discontinued it or is out of it now - I just bought the last box at our local store just in case we want to redo the kitchen and need more flooring etc).

There are many similar products around $1.50-$4/sq ft. Armstrong and other companies make it too. I collected dozens of samples and liked this one better than many more expensive options, it was mist scratch resistant ( did the key test) and looked the most neutral and most authentic to me. You can also get very realistic tile "luxury vinyl" now. Installation should be very cheap as it is so easy to do well - I did our entire 1500 sq ft home in 4 days with no assistance or prior experience.

Pics of our vinyl plank floors, my first ever DIY flooring:

During installation - I calculated carefully to achieve a seamless install throughout each floor from room to room, like real wood. I think this really adds to the veracity.

in the powder room (baseboards were in progress here, not caulked and touched up yet)

Did I mention that it doesn't show dust and is essentially indestructible?

    Bookmark   January 6, 2013 at 10:56PM
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I love wood floors. Much softer than stone or tile. Never liked the look or feel of vinyl. The only places I don't like wood are the laundry room and bathrooms. Even imperfect wood floors are preferable to wall to wall carpet, which is impossible to get really clean. I'll never forget the first time I took my oriental rugs to the rug laundry. Although I cleaned and vacuumed often, dirt had sifted through the rug to the floor. I was horrified! That's when I added vacuuming the backs of the rugs and washing the floor under them to my cleaning routine.

My one foray into hiring house cleaners lead me to conclude that this may not be a typical thing to do. The cleaners kept wanting to clean my kitchen and bathroom, which were already clean. It was wrestling the rugs that I wanted help with! Cleaners were more trouble than they were worth. I'm no spring chicken, but rug wrestling and bending over to hand mop the floor is good for maintaining agility and arm strength.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 12:26AM
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yogacat, we pulled up old carpet to put in that floor, and it was so disgusting to see what was in and under the carpet pad!! The pad on the ground floor was glued to the concrete slab, it may have been the original padding from 1980 - it was disintegrating and full of crud. I had to wear a dust mask when removing the stuff. I hate carpet! Area rugs can be moved, cleaned under, beaten outside and aired, but I still minimize the use of rugs.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 12:29AM
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WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a

I have very, very nice porcelain tile that looks like travertine in all the living areas and bathrooms in my home, and hardwood only in the bedrooms (with rugs put over the hardwood). I had this done about 7 years ago and have never regretted not putting hardwood throughout the house. The porcelain tile is so easy care.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 3:38PM
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I have always liked (real) wood flooring. I've been wondering whether there would be a change in heart among the general populace about it though. A cyclical thing.

I have to comment on the "hardwood was the poor man's floor" comment above. I have been thinking about this too. Hardwood floors were the norm (standard option) when my parents built their middle class house in the fifties. It was a big deal when, in the sixties, they could afford to put in WTW carpeting. Which they did in almost every room. It was definitely considered an upgrade.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 6:21PM
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Walnutcreek, would love to see photos if you have any...

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 7:48PM
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I am building a new construction house in Lubbock, TX (very sandy and windy)
I just had Karndean luxory vinyl plank installed throughout the entire house. There is no other floor surface at all. This is a very expensive high quality product and expect this floor to last the rest of my life. This is my forever home and I do not ever expect to move. This house is a completely custom house to my taste. I am 46 and expect to enjoy this low maintenance floor for a very long time.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 8:09PM
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Sunday - I would love to see your type of floors in person. Is it obvious when you walk on it that it's not wood or do most people think it is? Maybe it just matters that it's pretty and not that it fools people. I found their website and I'm thinking about ordering a sample. What color is yours?

    Bookmark   January 7, 2013 at 10:00PM
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No, I absolutely love real wood floors. I have disliked every other flooring surface I have ever had. They feel permanent and natural.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 5:30AM
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Postum, I'm finding wood floors to be high maintenance, but that's because I have two large dogs. One is white and sheds all year long, they bring in muddy paw prints too. And the dust from living on a dirt/rock road.

I honestly am struggling to keep my floors clean! Don't get me wrong, I love my floors, but every speck of dirt shows up. Or dog drool. Or bits of milk from sippy cups. lol.

I am so tired of vacuuming, dry mopping, and wet mopping I could scream. I need a housekeeper. :(

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 7:49AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

We wanted low maintenance as this is our retirement home, so we went with Amtico which is a high end vinyl plank or tile product. The material was used at the Expo stores (upscale Home Depot outlets that are no longer around) where the traffic was intense and they even drove tow motors over it. We figured if it could last there, it could last here.

Foyer floor with rosewood trim around the edges of the garcia stone and the inset compass. We used the garcia stone again in the kitchen...the rest of the upstairs is the rosewood.

The compass was made of the matching garcia stone and rosewood with a light maple for accent.

We had them custom make the "brass" trim to highlight between the hall space between the DR and the library and ran the planks the other way to visually highlight the space. The squares match the coffering in the ceiling.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 8:20AM
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Tire of wood floors? Never. Easy to care for and love the look.


Added: Sorry! I didn't realize I had responded to this - back in 2009!!! Didn't mean to be repetitive - guess you can tell, I'm a wood floor fan. LOL

This post was edited by tinam61 on Tue, Jan 8, 13 at 8:33

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 8:30AM
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Glad to see pics of nice vinyl wood flooring. My exSIL had it installed in her home and I hate it. Now that I see good installation w/ nice looking vinyl I think I can chalk hers up to the many other things that were installed poorly in her new build. As well as cheep materials.

I personally love hardwood floors and the 'patina' that comes along w/ them. But I don't like all wood floors. I like these:

Source: via Tiffani on Pinterest

Source: via Tiffani on Pinterest

And ceramic wood tiles as mentioned above:

Source: via Tiffani on Pinterest

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 8:50AM
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I find hardwood floors high maintenance with a big dog but carpet was high maintenance with a furry cat, and we have both, so it's a trade-off. However, the dog does claw into the hardwood floors and one day we will have to replace them for that reason, and it's going to cost a good bit more than carpet flooring. I don't understand how everybody's carpet is so dirty under the mat, on the pad, if they are vacuuming and cleaning frequently. Mine has never been that way and the carpet people always comment on how clean mine is and I really do not know why with cats and dogs and worst offender, a husband.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 9:06AM
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Patricia - back when we had some carpet removed - I was amazed at what all sifts down through the carpet to the backing. And yes, our home is pretty clean. I had off-white carpet and like you - people would comment on them and "how do you keep them so clean?". I also had a good - high powered vacuum. I think no matter what - stuff just works its way down through the carpeting. I imagine walking on it, even vacuuming, pushes stuff down. You don't have any idea until you remove the carpeting. It just gets trapped, is all I can figure.

I'm with Foxes - there is nothing like the patina of wood floors. If I had big dogs inside and had the option - I'd opt for handscraped or some type finish that is more forgiving of nicks and scratches.

Worst offender - husband. HAHA!!


    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 9:43AM
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Never will be tired of my wood floors. Low maintenance and I know they will last. I agree with the previous two posters though, re dogs and husbands, lol!

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 10:14AM
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I love the look of hardwood, not the price or care (3 kids and 2 big dogs) So we went with allure in Cherry. I LOVE it.

I went with dark because you don't notice its not wood as much, the repeating pattern isn't as easily seen as it is in a lighter color. Also if it gets nicked and dinged, I can dot it with a black paint pen, and its looks like nothing ever happened.

Here is a link that might be useful: All the floors in my house are Allure Cherry Vinyl Plank. PICTURES

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 11:06AM
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Meant 'cheap' not 'cheep'.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 12:18PM
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"I don't understand how everybody's carpet is so dirty under the mat, on the pad, if they are vacuuming and cleaning frequently."

I was OCD about cleaning the carpet in my last home, especially since I have dust allergies. DH used a (professional style) carpet shampooer every month or so, also. Despite my efforts of vacuuming often and not wearing shoes inside, the shampooer sucked up a disgusting amount of dirt from the carpet. It never seemed to get clean, and we "cleaned" it all the time.

So, I have as little carpeting in my new house as possible. Hardwood is throughout most of my home, and I think it's beautiful. More importantly, I KNOW it's clean.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 12:58PM
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Perhaps my carpet was more tightly woven and all the nasty was sitting on the top which my vacuum cleaner often could have testified to. Probably what it was. I am a vacuum cleaner nut anyway. I always have several brands. It's just like some women having so many shoes...I am into vacuum cleaning.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 2:13PM
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We've been really lucky because none of our dog's has ever scratched the floor. Even when running while turning a corner and sliding.

Now my Christmas tree in the stand is another story. But those floor markers came in handy. lol

I keep a large Bona dust mop behind the front door that no one can see when the door's open, and I love it for a quick clean-up of white dog hair.

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 2:15PM
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WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a

Jennifer, I will try to take some pictures. Don't believe I have any since my last computer got one of those "year" viruses and I had to shut it down (and still haven't gone through all of the rigamarole to get it working again).

    Bookmark   January 8, 2013 at 4:51PM
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Well this thread has been around for a long time. It is partially a question of aesthetics. With the advent of mass production, hand made and more natural elements became more valuable, in the way that an Irish wool sweater is more expensive than a wool machine knit one. Similarly, sustainablity has become much more important to many people. In addition many people want to have houses with minimum chemicals. So wood floors for these reasons will probably not go out of style. Still it is your house to live with and you should be happy. One question you might ask yourself is what type of neighborhood you are located in. there are many areas where wood floors would be the only choice for resale and others where vinyl is acceptable.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 7:27AM
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Most people who don't like wood floors seem to object to dings and dents that occur in wood over time. They also fade, the finish eventually wears off and they have to be refinished. I like the dings and dents, and don't mind when the floors under the chairs look more worn than the rest of the floor. All that does is prove that the house is lived in by humans, dogs, cats and other living things, not ghosts :-) I would worry that a floor that looks "brand new" 20 years after installation would look completely fake in the same way that upholstery covered in plastic slipcovers does. That said, we have considered a wood laminate for our basement and I have put it off for seven years now. It would be an improvement over carpet (in DH's opinion, he hates carpet) but I just cannot talk myself into it. I guess I'm too firmlly in the wood floor camp.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 8:12AM
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we used to have carpet down a long hallway that led from kitchen to bedrooms. During remodel, changed it to hickory wood floors. It sure looks nicer, but my feet and ankles are always sore. Not sure if its just a coincidence or due to the floors.

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 10:25AM
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cyn427 (zone 7)

Maybe it is an Eastern/Northeastern mindset, but I love hardwood floors and have never lived with anything else. Grew up with them...grandparents had them in their homes...all my friends' families, too. We have two 80 pound dogs and had large dogs when I was a child as well. I don't find them any harder to take care of than the tile floors in bathrooms. We do have a few scratches near one door as a result of three dogs(grandpup visits every weekend, so he can run off energy in the yard) rushing to get out and chase squirrels, but those don't bother me at all. I also will always be a wood floor person! :)

    Bookmark   February 9, 2013 at 10:41AM
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