We are reflooring the entire ground floor of our house in the next year and have already started to look for flooring ideas, namely wood effect flooring or some kind.
In our last house, we had real wood floors all through our hallway and I have to say…it was an absolute nightmare to maintain. When we moved to the new house, the entire ground floor is now floored with wide planked laminate and I’m amazed at how easy it is to look after in comparison. So what are the main differences between laminate and real wood flooring?
Real Wood Flooring
Picture credit: Pinterest
Real wood flooring looks very effective. It’s natural and as such it’s seen as a luxury and can be quite costly to lay.
We found real wood to be quite ‘soft’. It was easy to mark or scratch and you better make sure everyone takes their shoes off at the door, because it also stains very easily…so not all that practical at doorways or in the kitchen, especially light colours. As a young family with a buggy to bring in the house, I was always concerned with the dirt on the wheels marking the floor and after 18 months, there was a very distinctive dark patch at the front door that no amount of steam cleaning would shift. As an avid wearer of heels, there was the odd impression fro my shoes too.
It requires regular maintenance, such as sanding and coating, to keep it looking freshly laid and therefore can last longer than laminate flooring.
Laminate flooring has come on leaps and bound over the years. It is a cheaper alternative to wood that now comes in a variety of widths and colours and as such can give you the effect of a real wood floor, at a fraction of the price.
In the new house we have found the laminate flooring to be really hard wearing in comparison to our previous real wood floor. Even paint drips come off no problem!
I’m all for getting the look for less and laminate flooring gives me this option. It is by far more practical for our young family, who for the next few years will be traipsing in dirt on welly boots from the garden, as well as buggy wheels in the months to come.
As we are flooring through the kitchen, we would opt for a laminate flooring to repel stains from dropped or splashed cooking sauces. As we will also be covering both front and back doors, laminate flooring will also be easier to clean and maintain for young families like ours.
What’s your experience with flooring? Do you have a preference between real wood or laminate and what works best for you?