What You Need To Know About Replacing Carpet With Hardwood Flooring
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Deciding to replace your old carpet flooring with hardwood is a huge call to make. After all, floors play one of the crucial roles in your home design and usability. Not to mention that it's a project that requires a lot of time, money, and attention.
But we're not here to scare you. Our job is to help you understand why installing hardwood flooring is an excellent idea, and how to do it both effectively and efficiently. Before we get to that, though, let's clarify a few things.
Firstly, hardwood floors usually come in three varieties - strip, plank, and parquet. Secondly, you can choose between solid and engineered hardwood. The first is, as the name suggests, a solid piece of wood with no layers. The latter, on the other hand, consists of hardwood and plywood layers.
But let's not get into excessive technical differences, and let's get straight to the point. Here's what you need to know before you replace your old carpet with hardwood flooring.
Why Replace Carpet With Hardwood
Don't get us wrong. Carpet flooring is still a great choice. It absorbs sounds, improves indoor climate, and is extremely comfortable to walk on. Still, despite these benefits, replacing it with hardwood makes logical sense.
Increased Resale Value
First and foremost, hardwood is a fantastic home upgrade to consider before selling a house. It provides you with the best resale value, as according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), homeowners can recover even up to 106 % ROI of installing wood flooring.
Besides an excellent return on investment, hardwood flooring may increase your home value by 2,5 %. Moreover, according to the NAR's survey, 54 % of responders said they would pay more for a house with hardwood floors instead of carpet.
Home Buyers Prefer Wood Floors
It doesn't matter whether you're selling a house for cash in Louisiana, Pennsylvania, or Florida. Buyers across the country usually prefer hardwood flooring ahead of carpet floors. Why is that, though?
The first reason is definitely the design. When looking at different flooring options, hardwood is the most stylish one. Secondly, you don't need to replace it as often as carpet. We'll cover the pros and cons later, but it's good to have a general idea of why people may prepare hardwood.
Now, let's talk about money. Unfortunately, you should prepare yourself mentally for quite an investment when it comes to replacing carpet with hardwood. Hardwood doesn't come cheap, both in terms of cost per square foot and installation.
Sure, there are some alternatives like cork or laminate, but they can't compare to hardwood's natural beauty. Of course, the costs will vary depending on the space you wish to cover and the company you choose to install it for you.
Cost Per Square Foot
The first thing to know is that the hardwood floor price range is relatively wide. Depending on the wood type, the cost per square foot can vary from $3 to even $15 for more exotic wood types.
To put things into perspective, the carpet floor price range varies from $2 to $12 per square foot. As you can see, the difference is not that significant. What makes the difference is the installation cost.
Average Installation Costs
The average cost of hardwood installation in the United States is $4,541 per home. Usually, the labor costs between $3 and $8, depending on the wood type and company. You can calculate the overall cost via the HomeAdvisor calculator.
Also, keep in mind that you may have to pay for carpet removal. The other costs may also vary depending on factors such as location or ease of installation.
Ways to Save Money on Hardwood Installation
One of the most significant advantages of carpets is that you can easily install carpeting yourself. With hardwood flooring, the case is much more complicated. However, it doesn't mean there's no way to save some bucks on the project.
For instance, you can consider:
- Pulling up the carpeting yourself
- Installing some parts of flooring on your own
- Looking into faux wood flooring options
In general, if you feel confident about DIY, you can save a lot of money on installation. And if you don't, well, then you have to pick the tried and trusted retailer that won't charge you exorbitantly for the installation service.
Pros and Cons of Hardwood
We've mentioned before why so many home buyers prefer hardwood floors to carpet ones. But there is much more to it. As with everything, the situation isn't plain as a day. Sure, many pros are coming with hardwood flooring, but you should also consider some disadvantages.
Sometimes, the case might be that such flooring won't suit your lifestyle, causing potential problems. That's why thinking about the pros and cons is crucial when choosing hardwood. After all, it's quite a significant investment.
Let's take a closer look at them, shall we?
The most significant advantage of wood floors is, of course, their look. What's more, they work great with all interior design styles. It doesn't matter whether you're going for modern or traditional design. A hardwood floor will make every room look ravishing.
Another thing about hardwood floors is that they are extremely durable. Sometimes, you can find 100-year-old homes with original floors. Of course, there's a catch. If you want your hardwood to pass the test of time, you need to maintain it correctly. Fortunately, it's not a difficult task.
All you need to do to take care of your wood flooring is to sweep and vacuum regularly. Occasionally, you can also clean it with a wood floor cleaner.
Of course, as great as hardwood is, there are some cons you need to take into consideration too. We've already covered the high costs of installation and materials, but there's a little more than that.
For instance, hardwood floors tend to get scratched and scuffed with time, especially in high-traffic spaces. Because of that, you need to refinish your floors every now and then. The costs of such a service usually vary between $1 to $4 per square foot. You can also do it yourself if you feel confident.
It all depends on the floor type, colors, room layout, etc.
Another disadvantage you need to think about is the noise. Hardwood floors can be squeaky, annoying your neighbors (if you live in an apartment complex), and frankly, every home resident, including yourself.
An easy solution can be placing an area rug over the floor. Nevertheless, it can cause inconvenience.
Where to Install Hardwood Floors
As great as hardwood is, you can't cover your entire home in it (as tempting as it may sound). Why? After all, we've said that a wood floor can make any room look fabulous. Well, it can, but hardwood isn't the most practical of floor types.
Sure, it will work excellently in your living room or bedrooms, but there's a reason why almost every kitchen and bathroom is covered in tiles. Wood planks aren't waterproof. Of course, there are hardwood floors resistant to water, but they usually have exorbitant prices.
However, if you want to give your kitchen or bathroom the touch of hardwood, there are many types of tiles offering an astonishing wood grain pattern.
Wood Flooring Maintenance
Replacing your old carpet with hardwood is one thing. Ensuring it withstand the test of time, though, is an entirely different story. Sure, we've mentioned that hardwood maintenance isn't too difficult. However, doing it properly may require more effort.
The best way to do that is by creating the flooring maintenance routine. For instance, you should:
- Sweep the dust regularly
- Clean up any spills and stains immediately
- Avoid strong chemicals
- Put down mats and area rugs
- Move your furniture with caution
- Be careful with wet mopping
Besides these rules, you also have to keep in mind that every hardwood type requires refinishing every 7-10 years, even the most durable one.
We know that's quite a lot to process. Without these precautions, though, your floor may lose its color, ruining your home design. Sure, you can always cover it with carpeting, but that would make the whole project pointless, wouldn't it?
Replacing your old carpet with hardwood flooring is certainly a significant task and quite a huge investment. However, considering how many benefits wood floors bring to the table, it shouldn't surprise why so many people love them.
Of course, there's another side to the story. As great as hardwood floors are, they aren't always a perfect choice. Without proper maintenance, they will scratch, fade, and dent, forcing you to spend more on necessary repairs.
Let's sum it all up, though.
Deciding to replace carpeting with hardwood will make your life much easier in the long run. It's durable, stylish, and reliable, and if you take care of it properly, a hardwood floor will serve you for many years to come and increase your home value if you intend to sell it.
Consider your options, calculate the costs, and use our tips to make the best choice possible. We believe in you. Good luck!
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