Popular Types of Flooring
Whether you're looking for something elegant and subtle or bold and lively, there's a floor for you. Discover the most essential details about each type to guide your decision making.
The appeal of hardwood floors stands the test of time. With shades including maple, oak, cherry, walnut, and more, it can fit any design without sacrificing durability. However, it's one of the most expensive flooring materials and requires significant upkeep. At a minimum, you'll need to use specialty cleaning products regularly and restore its finish every few years. Since it's susceptible to water damage, it's also not suitable for basements, laundry rooms, or bathrooms.
Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered wood gives you the timeless look and resilience of hardwood without the extra maintenance. Typically, it consists of a layer of real hardwood bonded over a plywood substrate. While it's less likely to warp than true hardwood, it can sound hollow to walk on and can't be refinished more than once.
Laminate is another more affordable flooring option, consisting of a particleboard base, wood or tile finish, and protective plastic coating. It's easy to clean, scratch-resistant, and available in countless different styles and colors. However, it chips easily and is susceptible to moisture damage.
Vinyl flooring has superior moisture and fading resistance and is easy to maintain. Popular options include luxury vinyl plank (LVP) and luxury vinyl tile (LVT), with both having equal durability and long-lasting nature depending on the model you buy. Their price point sits comfortably between wood and laminate.
Tile flooring is ideal for bathrooms, kitchens, and other moisture-prone areas. It provides years of life with low upkeep requirements, and is available in many patterns, colors, and materials. However, it requires intensive prep work before installation and can be cool and sleek to walk on. Pricing depends on the material you select, with porcelain being more expensive than ceramic.
Granite, sandstone, travertine, and marble aren't just for the outdoors. Inside, they can give you a bold look and unparalleled water resistance. Despite its unique flair, it's not easy to clean, and long-term maintenance could be a bit more expensive.
With attentive maintenance, linoleum floors can persist for years. It is a budget-friendly choice with many methods for personalization. However, it can readily get dented or scratched and has been known to lose its original coloring when exposed to the sun's rays. The sun's rays also lead linoleum to fade over time, and it may not be suitable for damp locations.
Of all flooring options, carpet is one of the most affordable. It lends a comfortable feel to a room and reduces noise effectively. Unlike hard floors, carpet gets rid of concerns about scratches or dents, and the extra padding is much safer for young children. However, carpet requires time and effort to keep clean, especially if you have pets. The fibrous material grips stains, dampness, smells, and allergens.
How to Choose a Atlanta Flooring Company
Choosing a floor installer is just as critical as choosing a design. To ensure you get the most value, consider each of the following criteria.
Reputation and Reviews
The most crucial thing to research about any flooring company is its reputation. You can learn more about previous clients' experiences from review sites like the Better Business Bureau (BBB), Trustpilot, Google, and Yelp. Every flooring provider will have a mix of praise and criticism online. If a company resolves complaints in an amicable and satisfactory way, it's generally a good sign. However, if you find more negative reviews than positive ones, it's better to avoid working with it.
Portfolio and References
Most flooring contractors keep portfolios of their proudest projects. We recommend requesting a copy so you can look over the crew's workmanship. Portfolios might also include references from past customers. Request their contact information so you can discuss their interactions and thoughts about the company.
Specialization and Services
No two companies have the same experience or product offerings. You should find one that specializes in the material or type of floor you're interested in. A contractor's service offerings can also make a difference. At the very least, you should choose a provider that will haul away your old flooring materials. However, providers can also offer refinishing services or design advisory.
Cost is key to consider, but it should be less important than quality in your selection process. We recommend getting three to five different quotes for your flooring job to compare pricing and workmanship. Many companies offer on-site and online estimates to streamline the process.
Warranties and Guarantees
You should look for two different warranties in your company search. A manufacturer's warranty protects you in case of a product defect, while an installer's warranty covers workmanship. While some manufacturers and contractors have lifetime warranties, most are still tied to a specific time period (often ten years.) If you'd like additional coverage, you might be able to pay extra for an extended warranty.
Time management is key to a successful flooring job. Before you sign a contract, ask for an estimated timeline and inquire about what hurdles could impact the project. If a company assures you it'll finish the job by a certain deadline, get that guarantee in writing and communicate your expectations clearly as the work progresses.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Flooring in Atlanta
How much will it cost to install a new floor in Atlanta?
See our guides to how much each flooring type typically costs:
What's the most popular flooring material in Atlanta?
What are the licensing laws for Atlanta flooring companies?
How do I decide which flooring material is right?
Other questions to consider are the following:
- Does the room see a lot of moisture or foot traffic?
- What style best compliments my walls, furniture, and millwork?
- What are the long-term benefits of choosing one material over another?
How long does it usually take to install a floor in Atlanta?
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