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Flooring Type Comparison

Luxury Vinyl Planking

Characteristics

  • Budget friendly flooring option that mimics hardwood with a wide range of styles and options.
  • Good for high traffic areas or spaces that require an elegant finish.

pros

  • Low cost and long lasting
  • Low maintenance
  • Good option for bathrooms & kitchens
  • Usable in heavy traffic areas & commercial buildings
  • Soft, sound absorbent, good insulator
  • Moisture resistant

cons

  • Minimal Return on Investment
  • Cannot be refinished or polished
  • Can dull with wear
  • Sensitive to sunlight
  • Can easily fade or crack

cost comparison$4-$5 / sq. foot

Laminate

Characteristics

  • Synthetic wood flooring with a real wood aesthetic with a wide range of choices.

pros

  • Inexpensive
  • Water resistant (not waterproof)
  • Low maintenance
  • Incredible durability & strength
  • Resists scratches, stains and wear

cons

  • Cannot be repaired, refinished or stained
  • Once damaged, laminate planks must be completely replaced

cost comparison$3-$5/sq. foot

Engineered Hardwood

Characteristics

  • Layered products created of real thin slice of hardwood on top of a high quality plywood base.
  • Can be installed as a floating floor like traditional wood planks.
  • Appropriate for any floor in any home.

pros

  • Excellent hardwood alternative for concrete and other moist subfloor environments (ie. Basement)
  • Real wood finish
  • Versatile and available in many colors
  • Can be stained, refinished
  • Great for use with radiant heating

cons

  • Fewer choices of wood species vs. solid hardwood
  • You can sand it but once or twice lightly
  • Because the surface is thin, its overall durability is not as long as solid hardwood

cost comparison$5-$7sq. foot

Solid Hardwood

Characteristics

  • Real wood you can sand and refinish over and over.

pros

  • Real hardwood look & feel/aesthetics
  • Can withstand multiple re-finishings
  • Longer lifespan
  • Higher resale value
  • Renewable resource
  • Good insulator
  • More customizable – color/stain options

cons

  • Vulnerable to humidity, hardwood is not recommended for below-grade basements.

cost comparison$4-$10/sq. foot

Pre-Finished Solid Hardwood

pros

  • It is real hardwood
  • No on-site sanding/finishing required
  • Renewable resource
  • Good insulator
  • Easy one-day install
  • Resists more scratches than on-site finishing

cons

  • Limited color selection
  • Very difficult and expensive to refinish
  • Lower resale value than onsite finish
  • Has grooves in-between boards

cost comparison$5-$12/sq. foot

Andy Emoji