Laminate vs. Hardwood Flooring – What Would You Choose?
One of the most important and defining features of a house is its flooring. A lot of families prefer wood flooring as it gives a natural vibe. New constructions usually have laminated wooden flooring and whereas older traditional homes have original hardwood flooring. The laminated wood flooring gives a similar finish to natural wood, but it costs less than original wood flooring. There are several benefits and disadvantages to consider if you wish to choose between hardwood vs. laminate flooring for your house. If we compare between laminate and hardwood flooring, laminate will be less costly. But we must also consider the durability, resale value, maintaining, and installation factors.
Here we will compare some facts between hardwood vs. laminate flooring. It will be helpful for you to decide which one is more suitable for your house.
Durable material is easier to maintain and consistently looks good and decent for a long time.
Hardwood flooring durability: Hardwood flooring can remain the same for years. Though hardwood can get affected by unexpected situations like flooding can make some severe effects on the hardwood floor. It needs to be maintained, recoated, or refinished after a certain period of time, depending on how you take care of it. This process needs to be done by professionals as hardwood flooring doesn’t get scrubbed frequently.
Laminate flooring durability: Laminated flooring is made of pressed wood and is more durable and easy to maintain. It has good resistance to damage, like scratches, moisture, etc. It needs to be replaced after a certain period of time; generally, it is up to the mark for ten years. Things that deteriorate its lifespan are water leakage, marks of chair legs, excess sunlight, etc. If it is affected by any of these, the laminate wood flooring cannot be refinished, replacing it is the only solution.
So basically, the durability of hardwood flooring is better in comparison to laminate flooring. But if we talk about maintenance, both are equal.
Hardwood flooring appearance: Hardwood flooring is a premium material that gives a unique finishing making the space look very attractive. Various types of real hardwood look much better in comparison to laminate flooring or artificial wood finishing.
Laminate flooring appearance: Laminate flooring wood might look just like real hardwood from a distance, but if you observe minutely, you can figure out that it has a different finish and is not real hardwood. Laminated wood flooring has repetitive patterns, and it has a particular texture to make it look realistic, but it does not look as real as Hardwood flooring.
So Hardwood flooring offers a better appearance than laminate flooring. Hardwood flooring is way more attractive and gives a real wooden look.
Hardwood flooring resistance – Hardwood flooring can be affected by water. Numerous people choose to install it in the kitchen, but it is usually not recommended for areas that may come in touch with water. It can also be damaged if installed with concrete slabs. Instead, it should be installed with radiant heating systems as the material may shrink and end up with open joints.
Laminate flooring resistance – Laminate flooring can resist water and stain marks as well. But if the water enters the joint in the middle of planks, then that may affect the edges and fiberboard. Even laminate flooring is not suggested in wet areas like bathrooms or kitchen sinks.
So, hardwood flooring or laminate flooring, none are suitable for wet areas as they are not waterproof. But laminate flooring is comparatively better than hardwood flooring, especially for humid places. One more advantage of laminate flooring is that they have a good capacity for resisting heat.
Hardwood flooring maintenance – Cleaning the hardwood flooring is not very difficult. You just need to clean the floor and vacuum along with damp-wiping with a wood cleaner. Wood floors are sealed with polyurethane, and so they should not be polished.
Laminate flooring maintenance – Laminate floors are easy to maintain and can be easily cleaned with broom and vacuum. You can clean it with a laminate floor cleaner with damp-mop, broom, or cleaner. It doesn’t need waxing. And try to keep excess water away from the flooring.
Both hardwood and laminate flooring are easy to maintain.
Hardwood flooring cost – Hardwood flooring is comparatively expensive than laminate flooring. The normal range for solid hardwood flooring is between $4 to $12 per square foot and its standard cost is $8 per square foot. Some different types of hardwood flooring like Oak, Maple, and Ash cost from $4 to $5 per square foot. More exotic types of wood will be more expensive.
Laminate flooring cost – Laminate floorings usually cost $1 to $3 per square foot. Depending on the design, the cost may range between $10 to $12 per square foot.
If you don’t wish to spend much, then you can purchase Laminate flooring.
Hardwood flooring resale value – If the hardwood floor is of good quality, it adds significant value to your house. It is considered as a premium flooring material.
Laminate flooring resale value – Laminate flooring is not original wood and does not add much of resale value.
As hardwood floors are attractive and original wood, it will be preferred by real estate professionals and interested buyers.
Comfort and Sound:
Hardwood flooring comfort and sound – Hardwood floors are steady underfoot, and they tend to be noisy when someone is wearing heels. This flooring is very solid and generally is not used to radiant heating systems.
Laminate flooring comfort and sound – Laminate flooring is softer in comparison to hardwood as it is fixed on a foam underlayment. It is a floating floor, can bend underfoot unless it is stuck perfectly flat. The hard plastic surface of the laminate flooring can transmit the taps of shoe heels and pet toenails.
Both these floorings have similar traits when it comes to comfort and sound.
One of the major differences between hardwood flooring and laminate flooring is its texture and framework. Things like plank materials, finishing, width, and shape of the edge are some of the features that matter.
Hardwood flooring is made from original wood, and the manufacturer split the planks from big pieces of wood. After that, they grind the wood in the requested shape and size.
And laminate flooring is a manufactured material. It is prepared with all finishing done at the factory itself and is made of multiple layers with fiberboard.
Usually, hardwood planks have overlapping edges like tongue and groove or shiplap, so the board edges to cover and interlock.
Whereas, laminate flooring is already furnished with tongues and grooves which clicks together to hold the creases cozy. You may also notice a clip between the laminate floorboards to keep the planets tight together.
Whatever product you choose with any design, the manufacturer will supply you with the laminate flooring with the wood grain and color shade with a coating copy of the wood print. You can also purchase hardwood flooring, which is prefinished with wood stains. But usually, hardwood is purchased due to its original raw finishing and natural design.
Final Verdict of Laminate vs. Hardwood Flooring:
So what do you decide between hardwood vs. laminate flooring, which one would you prefer?
For those looking for a natural and warm look, they can opt for hardwood flooring. Though it may be a little expensive, it is all worth it. You can also choose some custom designs, stain marks giving the space a unique and elegant look. Those who are concerned about scratches on their floor may install a laminate floor. It is also economically better, which helps you get the aesthetic and budgetary requirements. For more information, visit Innovativedecorideas.