Worthington Ohio real estate


Laminate Flooring. When does it make sense?


Info on flooring from a flooring professional in New York. 

Laminate has it's place.

Thanks to Debbie Gartner for allowing this information to be Re-Blogged.


First, let me state for the record I prefer hardwood.  Second, let me clarify definitions.  Often my customers get laminate, engineered hardwood and vinyl confused.   It's not their job to know which is which...this is my job.

Laminate - This is fake.  It usually looks like hardwood (but some are made to look like tile).  These floors click into place and are usually floated.  Often, they can be placed on top of an existing floor without needing to remove it.  These are made with recycled wood that is left over in the manufacturing process

Vinyl - There are many forms of vinyl, but the most common types are sheets (12 ft wide) and vinyl tiles.  Vinyl is usually either waterproof or highly water resistant, pending on the type and quality.  For high quality and stylish vinyl see my recent post on Luxury vinyl - is it an oxymoron?

• Engineered hardwood - is real hardwood constructed in layers.  The term sounds fake, but I's not.  There are many benefits and reasons to use these wood.  For more info see my post on Engineered hardwoods.

Okay, so now that we are straight on definitions when does it make sense to use a laminate (vs. a hardwood)?

1.  If you need something more scratch resistant vs. hardwood.  I love hardwood, but it definitely can scratch.  So, if you are concerned about this for any of the following reasons - kids, pets, heavy traffic - laminates are often a safer bet.

2.  If budget is the main consideration - In general most laminates are less expensive than hardwoods.  As with any product, there is a range of quality, but if money is the key consideration, laminate is usually a better choice. 

3.  If staging/selling  a home - If the client needs to/wants to save money (which is often a key consideration when staging (i.e. how can we improve the look/quality without spending too much so the investment is worth it).  This is often a super option for a kitchen that has vinyl.  The laminate looks much nicer than vinyl and can usually be floated on top of the existing vinyl.  And, it's usually LESS expensive vs. replacing vinyl due to lower floor prep.

4.  If you are renting and constantly replacing the carpet for every tenant - In general, carpet is the least expensive surface - at least short-term.  But, it gets dirty and wears down easily.  So, if you have tenants moving in and out every 2-3 yrs and keep replacing the carpet, it will actually cost you much less in the long run to trade up to laminate flooring.  It will cost more initially, but it can easily last 15-25 yrs.  In addition, it makes your unit more appealing which means you can either charge more rent or find a tenant faster or both.  All you need is a potential renter to have 1 person in the family with either asthma or allergies and then a carpeted area won't work for them.  So next time consider trading up to laminate flooring.

When to avoid using laminate flooring

1. If moisture is an issue, do not use laminate flooring.  Laminate flooring uses leftover hardwood shavings (extras from the manufacturing of hardwood).  It is not waterproof.  It is just like hardwood - water is its enemy. 

2.  If floor isn't level.  If your floors are uneven, it's hard to install any type of hard surface (except vinyl which is flexible).  With a laminate floor (which is floating), if it's uneven it will make noise and shift/move when you walk on it.  If floors are very uneven, it's even possible for the floor to crack.  It's always best to level out the floor before installing any hard surface.  But, sometimes, this can be cost prohibitive. 

For more info on laminate or flooring in general, you can visit our website.  Or, check out our new flooring selector - see samples of carpet, hardwood, tile, laminate - 2,000 choices.

Debbie Gartner, Floor Coverings International in Westchester/Western Fairfield

Feel free to download our free flooring guide.  Or, visit our flooring selector - almost 2,000 options for hardwood, carpet, tile and more.

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This post provided by Maureen McCabe HER Realtors*

Contact Maureen McCabe of HER Realtors* - 614.388.8249

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Information is deemed to be accurate but should be verified to your satisfaction.  Information provided herein is supplied by several sources and is subject to change without notice.  Opinions expressed are solely those of Maureen McCabe.



Comment balloon 5 commentsMaureen McCabe • July 25 2010 06:38AM


Thx so much for reblogging.  I'm still trying to add the pictures (to clarify), but having internet connection challenges so they aren't attaching.  I'll have to try again later.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) almost 10 years ago

This is useful information for consumers.Thank you for reblogging the post.

Posted by Gita Bantwal, REALTOR,ABR,CRS,SRES,GRI - Bucks County & Philadel (RE/MAX Centre Realtors) almost 10 years ago

Good information for home owners. Thanks for sharing.

 New friend from my walk yesterday.

Posted by Roy Kelley (Realty Group Referrals) almost 10 years ago

i own a fraternity house. every 2 years i used to replace the carpet. 6 years ago i put in laminate. i haven't replaced it since and it looks like new.

Posted by John Armstrong (Coldwell Banker Heart of America) almost 10 years ago

Thank you for the post. Especially with rentals, it sounds like laminate is a good choice.

Posted by Ellen Dittman, #1 Stop for NE FLA-JAX/OP 904.535.1199 (TEXT OK) r (Watson Realty Corp.) almost 10 years ago