New Flooring the Top Dollar Rehabbing Way
Two inevitable truths in the Real Estate world are that styles change, and things wear out. Do you remember that remodeling item you invested in 15 to 20 years ago? Take a good hard look at it now, it long ago stopped being new, and now it may actually be ready for another replacement. Honestly, it reminds me of that day a couple of months ago when I went through my closet and discovered how many “cool” shirts I bought in the past that have now been boxed up and taken to charity. In this article we will address flooring specifically, and your best choices for durability, convenience, and style longevity.
In the 1980’s and 1990’s, popular floorings that were considered upscale were berber carpets and ceramic tiles. The berber carpets were in mildly warm tones, and very durable. Popular colors for ceramic tile were also warm tones, with sandstone, and muted apricot being very popular, and accompanying colors around the house tended to have a slightly southwest flavor to them. Warm tones ruled, and the ceramic tile was designed to be easy care, and to last forever.
Unfortunately, anything that has an incredibly long lifespan is likely to go out of style. Designers must make a living every year, so they lead us into new styles, and the public, including home buyers, let their tastes follow along with the designers. Around 2006, about the time that the real estate market topped out and started to head for a crash, designers started shifting from warm tones to cool tones, and by about 2011, having warm tones in your home was as good as telling the world that you are out of style.
In 2020, and moving into the next several years, people do not put warm tones in their homes, and the homes that sell for top dollar follow a template of cool colors in upscale materials. For flooring, the three top choices for flooring are:
- Hardwood—in neutral brown, preferably with grey undertones. There is a hardwood that, to me, looks like driftwood, it looks like it used to be brown, but it has been sun and water worn until now it looks like a little brown with grey and white. It is amazingly popular and can be used in every room in the house if you choose to do so, and is easy care, although damage from water and other liquids can be a concern.
- Ceramic Tile—The acceptable colors are white and grey, both cool colors. If the tile has any additional color added, it could have some flecks of dark grey, black, maybe even gold as an accent, but predominantly grey and white. This would be a flooring choice primarily for kitchens, bathrooms, and hallways. Being impermeable, this flooring is also easy care, and liquids would be less of a danger.
- Plush Carpet—Berber, and other textured carpets are still used, but they are not as elegant seeming, so they are more popular for rental properties. Plush carpets in grey, or possibly taupe are popular in bedrooms, family rooms, offices, and playrooms. These need to be retail grade carpets with retail grade pads to have durability.
Whether or not you plan to sell your property soon, it may be time to some updates. Consider that as you do, you are not just getting some new colors, you are also getting more recent materials that can be big improvements on things that you installed a long while ago. Sorry to tell you this, folks, but if you bought some of these items in 1985, that is 35 years ago. I have daughters that have not reached 35 yet, who have children who are in school!!!! Do you really think that your flooring should have to last through 2 generations? Yeesh, I hope not! We do not want to become too stuck in time.
I do want to share with you that we understand that we understand sometimes our available budget does not allow us to spend the highest in every area. I mentioned that hardwood is the most desirable flooring especially for resale, but it may be too pricy. With installation, hardwood can run $8-10 s/f. there are some incredible vinyl tiles that can save you around half, they are waterproof, easy care, so they are even more durable than hardwood. Two versions are called Stone Polymer Composite and Wood Polymer Composite, and they combine the benefits of being both rigid and resilient.
But explore the possibilities, be open to change. Go pick up some sample squares from your local home store, or bring in a professional to look at, and estimate different possibilities for your home. Even improving the flooring in one or two rooms of your home can make you feel like a new person. Just stick with neutrals if you do plan to sell your home in the future, and cool neutrals are what almost every buyer is looking for. Think about it this way, if you want to walk around with bare feet, or in stockings, what do your feet deserve? I know my feet love having a nice surface to walk on, and amazingly, when my feet are happy, it also brings a great big smile to my face.