Inexpensive Flooring Materials To Consider – Forbes Advisor


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REMARK: The first half of 2021 saw an unprecedented labor shortage as a side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, the demand for materials and construction jobs has skyrocketed. Therefore, material prices may be higher than shown in this article, and delivery times may be longer than usual for labor and materials.

If you are looking to make improvements to your home but are working on a tight budget, you may want to consider making small changes like repainting walls, replacing cabinet hardware, or varnishing furniture. However, there are some things you can do to make a bigger impact without having to break the bank. One of these options is to replace your flooring.

There are many types of flooring available to suit almost any price point. If you are considering installing new flooring, a little research will help you determine which material will give you the most bang for your buck, while still meeting your lifestyle needs. Here are five inexpensive flooring options and a few pros and cons associated with each.

1. Vinyl sheet

Sheet vinyl costs an average of $ 0.50 to $ 2 per square foot, making it a great affordable option. Sheet vinyl is a popular flooring choice among homeowners because it is comfortable, durable and economical. Plus, it’s available in a wide variety of colors and patterns to suit almost any style and need.

That said, the quality of vinyl sheets can vary from brand to brand, or even within the same brand. If you are looking to save money, sheet vinyl is a particularly good option as it is usually quite easy for most homeowners to install on their own, so it is possible to skip the installation cost. However, it can be difficult to remove, so if you come to this point in the process, it is recommended that you bring in a professional.

2. Linoleum

The typical price for linoleum flooring is usually between $ 2 and $ 3 per square foot, which makes it slightly more expensive than sheet vinyl. It is often confused with vinyl because they are visually very similar. This type of flooring is a good option because it is low maintenance, durable and environmentally friendly. It should be noted that it is water resistant but not waterproof, and if it is completely submerged in water damage will likely occur.

Linoleum installed in rooms with high sunlight can turn amber, which is when the surface begins to turn yellow. However, this can be avoided with proper maintenance like waxing every two to three years (if the floor is not already coated). It is possible to install linoleum flooring yourself, but if you are working with an uneven sub-floor you may want to bring in a professional.

3. Laminate

Laminate flooring typically costs between $ 1 and $ 6 per square foot. It’s a great choice for those who want a flooring option that looks like hardwood floors but can be installed for a much cheaper price. It is easy to clean and maintain and is quite durable. That said, laminate cannot be refurbished or resealed, so if damage does occur, it usually needs to be replaced.

If it is not properly sealed and water or moisture seeps through the cracks, it can easily be damaged and deformed. Laminate is a good option if you’re looking to save money on installation, as it’s decently easy to install without a professional. However, it sometimes has a reputation for looking fake and hard underfoot, so if comfort is a top priority for you, laminate might not be the best choice.

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4. Carpet

Depending on the quality and material of the rug you are looking to purchase, prices can range from $ 2 to $ 7 per square foot. Carpeting is an extremely soft and comfortable flooring option, so it offers a level of security that makes it a particularly attractive option for households with children.

Rugs can be found in a wide variety of colors, styles, and materials, so chances are you can find something to suit your style. Because carpet installation is a project that is done without a professional can easily go wrong, DIY is not recommended.

Plus, since it’s not an easily wiped surface, cleaning and maintaining carpets is slightly more complicated and expensive than hard flooring. Plus, hard surface flooring options are on the rise when it comes to style and trends, so rugs can actually decrease your home’s resale value.

5. Polished concrete

The price of polished concrete floors varies from $ 2 to $ 8 per square foot, which makes it a relatively inexpensive flooring option. Since concrete must be mixed and prepared to a specific degree before it can be properly installed, it is usually best to have the installation done by a concrete professional. Any incident that occurs during the casting phase will have an impact on the final product and will be difficult, if not impossible, to correct.

That said, once the floor is laid and polished, cleaning and maintaining waxed concrete floors is extremely easy and inexpensive. Plus, if properly maintained, waxed concrete floors are extremely durable and can easily last a lifetime.

However, as a flooring option, concrete can be particularly cold, hard, and uncomfortable. While density is an advantage in terms of durability – since it is a material that does not get damaged easily – it is a disadvantage in terms of safety, as falling on it can be extremely dangerous.

Final result

Installing new flooring doesn’t have to be expensive, if you know where to find the right materials and what material you want to use on your floors. If in doubt, consult a flooring installation company, who can help you find the lowest prices and install the flooring for you.

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