Popular Types of Flooring
Flooring varies greatly in price and design. Here's what to know about each type.
Homebuyers across New York City seek out hardwood flooring for its beauty and durability. It's available in several varieties to accommodate different designs, from maple and oak to cherry and walnut. However, it's among the priciest of flooring materials and requires consistent maintenance. 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 bathrooms, laundry rooms, or basements.
Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered wood offers you the durability and look of hardwood without the extra maintenance. Typically, it uses a layer of real hardwood fused with 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 scratch-resistant, easy to clean, and available in countless different styles and colors. However, it's more susceptible to water damage and chipping.
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 strength and longevity depending on the model you buy. Their price point sits comfortably between wood and laminate.
Tile flooring is another classy design that can endure for years. Like vinyl, it requires minimal maintenance and is easy to clean. As such, it's perfect for moisture-prone spaces like bathrooms and kitchens. However, it might not work well for bedrooms and living rooms since it's cooler and more slippery to walk on. The cost differs between styles, with porcelain carrying a higher price tag than ceramic.
Stone floors are among the most waterproof available. You can choose from a variety of bold design options, including granite, sandstone, travertine, and marble. However, like hardwood, it can be expensive and difficult to clean.
With proper maintenance, linoleum floors can persist for years. It is a budget-friendly choice with many methods for adaptation. However, it can easily become damaged and has been known to fade when exposed to the sun's rays. The sun's rays also lead linoleum to lose color over time, and it may not be suitable for areas with excess moisture.
Of all flooring options, carpet is one of the most affordable. It lends a comfortable feel to a room and absorbs noise effectively. Unlike hard floors, carpet removes 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 retains stains, dampness, smells, and allergens.
How to Choose a New York City 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. Check review sites like Trustpilot, Google, the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and Yelp to see what previous clients have to say. Even the most reliable flooring installers will have both positive and negative reviews. Look for how a company responds to complaints and interacts with others. If it works toward a satisfactory resolution and acts in good faith, that's an encouraging sign. However, if it's argumentative or has a high negative-to-positive review ratio, it's wise to avoid working with it.
Portfolio and References
A trusted flooring company will be happy to show you portfolios of its previous work. Take a good look at each listed project and ask questions as you have them. It's also good practice to ask for references from previous customers. Once you have their contact information, get in touch and ask about their experiences.
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. Equally important is a provider's service offerings. At the very least, it should offer cleanup and haul-away for your old flooring materials. However, if you're feeling lost in all the color, material, and style choices, you can also look for contractors with design teams.
Cost is crucial to consider, but it should be less important than quality in your selection process. We recommend getting at least three different quotes for your flooring job to compare pricing and workmanship. Many companies offer on-site and online estimates to simplify the process.
Warranties and Guarantees
Flooring services typically come with two warranties. The first one, issued by the manufacturer, covers the floor itself. The second covers the installation crew's workmanship. Depending on the installer and flooring brand you pick, warranty protection could be limited to a fixed term. In other instances, it continues for the life of the floor. Ask an installer about its warranty terms, including extensions that could give you a few more years of coverage.
You don't want your flooring work to last longer than needed. Get an estimated timeline up-front and ask about potential delays. Express your expectations clearly and get any guarantees in writing.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Flooring in New York City
How much will it cost to install a new floor in New York City?
See our guides to how much each flooring type typically costs:
What's the most popular flooring material in New York City?
What are the licensing laws for New York City flooring companies?
Could I save money by buying flooring online?
What are the telltale signs I need to replace my floor?
- Widening gaps between planks/tiles
- Severe mold or mildew growth
- Deep scratches, holes, or dents
- Patches that feel unstable
- Excessive squeakiness
- Water damage
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