DIY Flooring this year? Don’t rip up your floors before asking these 5 questions!
New Years’ celebrations and resolutions always go hand in hand. Something else that should be included is renovations! The flooring industry is growing rapidly, which means there are a lot of floors being installed from both professionals and DIY homeowners alike. To put things into perspective, there are over 400 Billion floors sold globally. With so many floors sold, it can be difficult to know just what type of flooring you should select, or what options are even available to you.
The first thing you will want to do, is decide if you’ll be hiring professionals to install your new flooring, or if you will be making this your DIY debut? If you’re choosing DIY flooring, keep reading for the top 5 things to keep in mind before you start ripping up your floors!
One – what is your DIY flooring budget?
Flooring options range in price from $2 to $100+ per square foot. That range makes it difficult to know what is a good price, and what is within budget for your project. When you are choosing to DIY your flooring installation, it’s easy to forget a supply here or there, making a few extra trips to the hardware store, with your total bill quickly adding up. Here are a few items to keep in mind when figure out what to include in your budget:
Materials – obviously the flooring boards/tiles/sheets/etc. Whatever type of flooring you are using, make sure you have enough for your entire project PLUS a little bit extra – just in case you make a mistake and need to rework a piece. You don’t want to be without flooring materials in the midst of your project.
Supplies – spacers, rubber mallets, adhesive, etc. Have extras, and make sure you are prepared with having read the instructions for how to use each item.
Time – aside from the time needed to actually lay your new flooring, plan in the time needed for setting and finishing before you can move furniture back into that space. If the project should take 2 hours, plan in time to go slowly and ensure you have enough time to pay attention to the details. Your labor should also be calculated into your budget, so you can determine if choosing the DIY route is the best option for you.
Two – What type of flooring will you be installing?
With such a large industry booming across the globe, it’s easy to get lost in the variety of flooring options available. Here are a few options depending on the room they will be in:
Kitchens – due to the high traffic area that are kitchens, it’s important to pick a flooring that will be able to sustain all types of usage. Options such as linoleum, ceramic tile, and hardwood flooring all have their pros and cons. Many people choose hardwoods for the warm, homey feeling that is created. While others choose linoleum is inexpensive and easy to clean, and comes in dozens of different designs so you can really get the vibe you want.
Living Rooms – carpet might seem like the easy go to choice for the softness, warmth and sound-proofing, but carpet stains easily, and can require more cleaning than other alternatives such as laminate wood flooring. You can find boards with varying widths, character marks, grains, stains, and more.
Bathrooms – rightfully so, bathrooms see a lot of moisture from showers, baths, and little ones leaving the water running too long. Much like kitchens, bathrooms function best with ceramic tile or linoleum, and some people even use vinyl tiles which offer a more affordable option for DIYers looking to increase their home’s value down the line.
Three – Do you have the supplies and knowledge to install yourself?
Watch some videos online for how to install the flooring option you have selected. It’s easy to find full installation videos on YouTube these days, so you will know if this is a project you want to undertake. Next make sure you have the right tools. Floor installation isn’t something you can jerryrig working with some other tools that have other intended uses. The basic tools (aside from the flooring itself) you’ll be needing include:
Tapping blocks (these keep the pieces nice and tight together)
Laser level and chalk line
Multiple rubber mallets (these will get used quite a bit, so it’s a good idea to have more than one)
Someone to help
Once you have all of your supplies ready, the room/space is prepped, and you have some patience, it’s time to get down to it. Follow instructions on the flooring boxes, or follow along to the videos you watch for how to utilize spacers to ensure the floor has room to expand. Spend time focusing on the details as you lay down each board. Working too quickly can lead to problems with rows further down, so it’s important to correct any issues you see.
Four – How much maintenance do you want?
It’s obvious that different flooring types require different maintenance and cleaning routines. Carpets are often cleaned more often than hardwoods are sanded and varnished, but part of your required maintenance is determined by the material you are laying. Many carpet options now offer stain-resistance, and wood planks offer stain-resistance, scratch-resistance, and other aspects that make them more appealing to utilize in multiple rooms. Stone and ceramic tiles have their own requirements as well, so keep in mind what the long term needs are going to be.
Five – How much could you save with hiring a professional?
Sometimes hiring a professional is the most cost efficient method, and that’s completely fine! The flooring installers you hire should be licensed, insured and bonded. Don’t work with a company that isn’t. This is true for more than just floor installation! Ask what options are available. You don’t want to have your heart set on a specific Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP) only to find out your floor installer doesn’t carry and can’t custom order that brand or grain. Many flooring companies have showrooms that you can browse every flooring option they have available, including taking some samples home to color match with the rest of your home.
No matter if you choose to hire professionals or DIY it through your flooring renovation process, it’s important to understand the pros and cons of the flooring you are choosing, and what usage the flooring will get depending on the room it is in. You don’t want to spend time and money installing new floors, only to have bathroom moisture cause the planks to come up way too soon, costing you more money and time, or realize years after installation that you need to get your hardwoods sanded and varnished, consistently over time.
Flooring remodels can dramatically change the feeling and flow of a room, and can increase (or decrease!) the resale value of your home overall. But floor installation mistakes are common when people take on a project they aren’t equipped to handle, and can be solved by hiring qualified professionals such as Floor World. Stop into our showroom, browse our selection, take home some of your favorite samples, and let us help you complete your DIY flooring project. We are here to help with advice, knowledge, or full installation!