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3 Flooring Options for your Living Room

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Your living room plays many different roles in your home: it’s where you relax, entertain guests, watch films, and spend time with the family. As one of the most used areas in your home, whatever flooring you choose needs to be durable whilst also not forgetting you still want comfort. With both of these considerations in mind, here are some flooring options to consider:

Hardwood

An incredibly popular choice for many homeowners, hardwood not only looks beautiful in the living room it’s also incredibly strong and durable. A timeless choice, hardwood has an incredibly long lifespan – especially if you regularly maintain it. There’s also a nice variety of finishes available, with textured wood being a major player in recent trends. You may also opt for unfinished wood and stain them based on your own preference. If you love hardwood but want to protect it, look into getting area rugs. This will not only prevent damage, it adds a higher degree of comfort and can add to the overall aesthetic of the room. If you want your home to be eco-friendly, look into alternative, fast growing woods like bamboo and rubber.

Carpet

Carpet is another favorite for the living room, but it’s important to ensure you opt for a type which will balance both comfort and strength. The living room is a popular place, so opt for materials which have the ability to cope with footfall – nylon is one the best choices due to its ability to bounce back. Wool is also advisable as it has a natural strength, however it is on the more expensive side. You may want to consider a blend, which brings down the cost without compromising too much on quality.

Vinyl

Homeowners adore vinyl flooring because it can imitate other materials at a fraction of the price. It comes in pretty much any design you can think of – the tiled variety is easy to install and can last for a few decades (especially if you opt for the higher tier, luxury). Finally, it’s softer underfoot than hardwood and tile – you can even find types with extra cushioning to give even more comfort.

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3 Flooring Options for your Bathroom

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Your bathroom has a lot more to contend with than other, less frequented areas of your home. Not only does it see a lot of footfall, it’s also has to deal with one of the most difficult external influences of the home – moisture. In the past this meant one would be quite limited in what flooring options were available when looking to redecorate. Thankfully that isn’t the case nowadays! Let’s take a look at some of the best flooring options for your bathroom:

Vinyl

Vinyl flooring is a great option for the bathroom for a multitude of reasons – not least due to the thousands of styles available. It’s an extremely practical choice, especially if you have little ones and are worried about large amounts of water escaping onto the floor. Luxury vinyl plank flooring is fast becoming a very popular choice, but sheet still does a stellar job if your on a budget. If you opt for vinyl tiles you may well be able to fit them yourself, which helps to keep you well within budget.

Tile (Porcelain, Stone, Ceramic)

A common choice for bathrooms and with good reason, tiles are easy to maintain, durable, and have no problem dealing with moisture. You can opt for porcelain or stone depending on your preference – both deal well with water and have a long life. Ceramic is cheaper but is also more porous, so it depends on how long you’re intending the tiles to last. Consider texturing your tiles so as to avoid the slippery when wet issue.

Engineered Wood

Unfortunately hardwood doesn’t have much resistance to moisture – it swells and can be damaged by being in high humidity. Thankfully, engineered wood manages to more readily resist the weaknesses of it’s inspiration, meaning it can be installed in the bathroom without a worry. It won’t last as long as some of the other options listed here as the top layer of the flooring is still wood, but it’s still quite durable and provides an elegant aesthetic.

Half Bathroom?

If you have a half bathroom you don’t need to be as concerned with water and humidity, so you have a little more freedom when it comes to your flooring choices.

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3 Flooring Options for your Dining Room

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The dining room is a place for family and friends to get together and enjoy each other’s company – the last thing you want to worry about is if your floor can content with spilled food and drink. Then there’s the issue of furniture; if not properly protected your floor can be irreparably scratched by the constant pulling out of chairs. Take a look at some of the best flooring options for dining rooms below:

Carpet

You might be worried about stains and spills, but fear not as nowadays carpets can be protected against such weaknesses, making them the perfect partner for the dining room. Carpet adds an element of warmth to any area and come in such a huge array of different materials, styles, and textures you can easily find one to suit any decor. As the dining room can see it’s fair amount of foot traffic (as well as having furniture dragged around it) it’s advisable to opt for a more durable material ,such as nylon or wool blend, as well as a forgiving cut to the pile and possibly even a pattern.

Hardwood

Hardwood is a timeless and elegant option many homeowners enjoy having throughout the house. It’s advantages include durability and strength, as well as a long lifespan and inherent value. It’s important to protect your hardwood against scratches, so ensure to have furniture pads places on the bottom of all chairs and tables. You might also look into getting an area rug to protect the floor, remember to opt for one which will fit the entire table and chairs on with plenty of space – a smaller one will make the overall aesthetic uneven.

Tile

Tile in the dining room might not be to everyone’s taste, but if you want to create a certain style (such as modernist or Mediterranean) then this may well be the right choice for you. If you live in warmer climates, tile offers cooling properties too. Add to this it’s strength and stain resistance, and this flooring might just be your perfect dining room partner.

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3 Flooring Options for your Kitchen

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Your kitchen more than anywhere else in your home is where the aesthetic meets the functional. This not only applies to layout and cabinetry, but also to the type of flooring you choose. There’s high footfall, food, water, stains, grease…in short a lot for the flooring to cope with. With these factors in mind, here are 3 options to consider:

Vinyl

A great all-rounder, you can either opt for sheet or tile depending on your budget and preference. This man-made material is extremely durable and affordable, whilst also being able to mimic many other materials (including hardwood and stone). It’s quick to install, and if you opt for sheet there’s no crevices for moisture or grease to get into. If you want it to be a tad softer underfoot, purchase a cushioned variety.

Ceramic/Porcelain Tile

Ceramic and porcelain tiles both have several attractive features which makes them ideal for the kitchen. They are incredibly stain resistant and easy to clean, as well as strong and long lasting. Not only this, if properly installed they are incredibly water resistant – but this isn’t a DIY job for most people and you’ll likely need to hire professionals.

Linoleum

Finally we have linoleum, another strong and cost-effective option. It will need to be sealed upon installation to ensure it stays water resistant, but if treated properly it can last for up to 40 years. Another great feature to take into consideration it’s environmental friendliness, as it is made from all natural materials.

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3 Flooring Options for your Bedroom

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When it comes to bedroom decor, there are certain factors you need to take into consideration – one of the most important being comfort. Unlike other parts of your home which require durability for flooring due to high foot traffic, chances are your bedroom won’t see nowhere near as much wear and tear. This means you have a little more freedom when it comes to luxury and comfort.

Let’s take a look at the top three flooring options for your bedroom:

Wool/Silk Carpet

Wool and silk blend carpet is a big winner in the bedroom thanks to its high level of comfort. There’s nothing better than the soft, cushioned feeling of a wool/silk carpet underfoot – it combines both durability and visual appeal thanks to the blend. Add to that a huge variety of different styles available, and you’re onto a winner.

Carpets generally are a major player in the bedroom decor department, thanks to their ability to muffle sound and to retain heat – both of which make your sleep environment more pleasurable.

Area Rugs

Area rugs are a smart way to warm up your bedroom if you have tile, wooden, or composite flooring. Not only do they add a level of luxury to the bedroom, they can also be used to denote different areas. For example, have one large rug under the bed and another by a dressing area. You’re also able to opt for more decorative, ornate rugs in the bedroom due to the limited amount of footfall.

Wood/Wood Composite

A classic choice for any room, wood or wood composite is another popular choice in the  bedroom. It isn’t as soft as carpet but adding area rugs remedies that. If you have allergies and want to sleep soundly, wooden flooring might well be the direction to go in. That being said, it’s important to consider the auditory ramifications of hardwood in the bedroom – especially if you’re on the second floor.

Remember – Cut Pile

The pile of your carpet/area rug makes a huge difference to both the overall aesthetic, feel, and texture of the material. Cut pile carpet is less durable than uncut and more stain resistant, but that probably isn’t a huge concern in the bedroom as it would be in say the dining room or hallway. What cut pile excels in is comfort – the fibers make it softer and more luxurious underfoot (a major plus in the bedroom).

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Will My Dog Ruin My Hardwood Floor?

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Will my Dog Ruin my Hardwood Floor?

Having a pet has immeasurable benefits for the family, but if you have hardwood floors you might be worried about the damage your dog may cause. Hardwood is a costly part of your home which you don’t want to be replacing unless it’s necessary, so take the following steps to ensure your furry friend doesn’t ruin it!

Rugs are your New Best Friend!

Rugs make a huge difference both to the hardwood, and to your dog’s life! Most dogs don’t enjoy the lack of traction under their paws, and having a rug makes them feel more comfortable. Not only that rugs protect your floor from any scratches, and are easy to vacuum and clean. Think about installing area rugs in places where your dog often frequents or runs.

Clean your Pup Often

If your dog loves getting in a mess, make sure you clean him up before he enters the home. Mud on paws can act as an abrasive substance your hardwood (similar to sandpaper) so give them a wipe to avoid any damage.

Keep their Nails Short

Another way to make sure scratches don’t get the better of you is to keep your pet’s nails trimmed and short. Longer nails are more likely to damage flooring.

Regular Maintenance

No matter how careful you are, chances are you’ll still end up with some wear and tear – it’s normal regardless of whether pets are a factor or not. As such, ensure you treat any scratches promptly and regularly maintain your hardwood floor. You can treat scratches by using specialized products – just ensure to test them out in an inconspicuous area first.

 

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How to Measure Your Floor

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How to Measure your Floor

When it comes to installing a new floor, the first thing you have to do is ensure you’ve measured it correctly – after all there’s no point pricing up options if you’re working with the incorrect size. Let’s check out some tips on how to calculate the perfect measurement:

Shape and Layout Sketch

Your first step should be to determine the shape and layout of your room, as this will let you know how many dimensions you need to measure and give you a general overall view. You don’t have to do a scale for scale sketch, but it’s good to visualize the space and a sketch can help you to do this.

Measure

Next you need to measure the room, which is usually quite straightforward. Use masking tape to ensure you’re getting accurate numbers, and ensure to measure any ‘obstacles’ (like kitchen islands and built in furniture). Record all of this on your sketch.

Calculate

You will next need to calculate the square footage of the area by multiplying the width and length. This is very easy if the room you’re working with is rectangle or square, but if your room isn’t a simple shape, try to separate it into individual square or rectangles to make your life easier. Detail these shapes on your sketch for future reference.

Account for Waste

Finally it’s important to account for the waste factor, you always need to order a little more than what you need to ensure odd angles of the room are accounted for. It’s better to have more than enough than to run short. If you’re installing yourself, a good figure to work with is an extra 5%, however if your room is an odd shape (like triangular) then you should bump that figure up to 10%. Do a final check of your measurements and calculations, adding the waste factor in, and you’ll hopefully end up with the right amount of flooring with minimal waste.

 

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How to Refinish a Hardwood Floor

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A hardwood floor is certainly a investment, and it makes a huge difference to the overall aesthetic of your home. If you regularly maintain your hardwood floor (sweeping daily, clearing up spills as they happen) you probably won’t need to refinish it for around 20 years. After this time normal wear and tear takes place, and as such the floor might suffer from scratches, discoloration, and dullness. Give your hardwood floor a new lease of life by refinishing it using the following steps:

Sand

The first step is to sand the floor. You might want to hire a professional to do this, or if you feel confident you can rent a sander to complete the job yourself. Make sure you’re using the right sandpaper gradient and know how to operate the machinery – it’s not worth ruining your floor to save money as it will cost more in the long run to install an entirely new floor!

Clean

After sanding you need to remove all dust and dirt from the room – every single speck. Wipe down walls and moldings debris onto the floor, letting it settle for a while. You can then vacuum up using a dust filter. Then finally use several tack cloths to clean up any residue.

Choose your Finish

Next you need to choose your finish – which type you choose will be dependent on the needs of your flooring as some are more durable than others. You can opt for polyurethane, varnish, or penetrating sealer. It make the most sense to seal the wood as soon as possible in order to ensure the exposed wood is not affected by moisture. Apply evenly and use thin coats, following the directions on the container. You should wait at least 24 hours (if not longer) to move furniture back into the room.

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How to get Stains out of Your Carpet

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Carpet is a great option for many homeowners – its warm, cozy, insulating, comes in a variety of styles, and can help your home become more energy efficient. That being said, it is more prone to staining than other types of flooring, and there’s nothing worse than your newly-installed carpet being ruined in the first year!

Luckily there are many ways in which you can treat stains, making sure your carpet has a longer lifespan. Check out the following:

Act Immediately

The longer a stain sits, the more chance it will become a permanent fixture as it will begin to soak into the fibers. Try to address stains as soon as they happen to avoid this.

Blot

The next step is to blot away at the stain, as well as removing all external matter. Ensure you don’t rub – this will actually often make the stain worse as you’re effectively helping it get further into the fibers. Works from the outside in to ensure it doesn’t spread.

Wet

Next use a damp cloth to wet the stain. At this point if the stain is being stubborn, you may want to apply carpet cleaner and rinse with water. Always remember to use the same method as blotting – never scrub and move to the center of the stain for best results.

Water Soluble

Water soluble stains (cola, juice, ice cream, excrement, mud etc.) can be treated using white vinegar (¼ teaspoon) and 32 oz of water. You may swap the vinegar for non-bleach detergent, just remember to always test an inconspicuous area first.

Other water soluble

Other different water soluble stains may need more attention (these stains include blood, coffee, mustard, wine). You’ll need to mix one tablespoon of ammonia with one cup of water.

Fat, Oil, and Wax

Place a paper towel over the stain and put the iron on the lowest setting, and it should hopefully come up.

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Choosing the Right Floor for the Right Room

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If you’re in the process of redecorating, you might well be struggling when it comes to choosing flooring. Sure, aesthetics are important – but when it comes to floors you have to consider several other factors in addition to this which might alter the type you settle on. Let’s take a look at some tips to help you make the right decision:

Traffic

One of the main factors to consider when choosing your floor is the amount of foot traffic it will see. If the flooring is going to be installed in a high traffic area that sees a lot of footfall, it’s advisable to opt for a durable, strong option that can contend with the constant wear and tear. You might consider tiles, bamboo, resilient flooring (such as sheet) or hardwood if this is the case.

Humidity and Dampness

Another big consideration for homeowners is the amount of humidity and dampness the flooring will be contending with. If you’re in the process of redecorating your basement for example, it’s vital you choose a floor that is able to cope with the damp. Viable candidates include concrete, luxury vinyl, porcelain tile, concrete, and certain types of laminate.

Durability

If you have pets or children, chances are you don’t want to flooring that stains easily or can be scratched. Consider installing a flooring that won’t be easily damaged, such a plank vinyl, tile or even carpet. Remember if you want to protect your hardwood floor from scratches, you can always use an area rug.

Budget

Finally an important consideration for many homeowners is the price point. If you’re on a budget, some of the high ticket flooring (such a porcelain tiles and hardwood)  may not be attainable for you. Luckily there are many affordable alternatives thanks to modern technology. If you don’t want to replace your flooring regularly, it’s makes more financial sense to opt for higher quality which will cost you less in the long run.