No matter what type of flooring you're looking to purchase, know that flooring is the foundation to any home. It is an investment that will last for years and may even stick with you until you purchase a new home. Flooring prices will vary across retailers and regions, so it is important to remember this as well. So before you get started browsing around, determine which type of floor you'd like and how many years you plan to get out of it.
The most expensive are ceramic floors that include granite and marble floor tiles. On the low end, you can expect to pay $0.78 per tile, but some tiles can be as much as $2.25. While the cost of this project can get high quickly, ceramic floors are meant to last an extended lifetime and show little wear and tear, if any, over the years. They are low maintenance and healthy for the home, with no need to worry about spills, stains or scratches. Generally speaking, ceramic floors are best for kitchens, bathrooms and walkways.
The second most expensive option is hardwood. Solid wood floors are beautiful and offer striking grain patterns. In general, these flooring prices range from $5 to $15 per square foot depending on the type and quality of the wood. Remember to factor in the cost of installation, as solid wood floors need to be installed by a professional. Some glue the floorboards directly to the concrete, while others hammer and nail them in. With the intense labor and extended timeframe, labor can cost more than the material itself.
With the high cost of solid wood floors, many homeowners are shifting their focus to engineered wood. These floors have a plywood center and veneered wood top. They are cheaper to begin with since they are not made from solid wood and can be installed on your own. Engineered wood uses a snap-and-lock system that snaps the boards together with no nails or glue. Another cost-effective solution is laminate, as these floors use the same snap-and-lock installation method and cost between $1 and $6.
The advantage to laminate is that because the top layer is a photograph, you can enjoy laminate that looks like real wood, stone or marble. It's an excellent way to get the upscale flooring you want for a fraction of the cost. Vinyl has also come a long way and can offer the seamless look that you want to achieve throughout the home for less. Sheet vinyl has no separation between the tiles so it looks more natural, but is more difficult to install. Vinyl tiles on the other hand, are self stick and easy to install.
In order to get the best flooring prices, you'll need to look through both wholesalers and retailers. Wholesalers have great prices that allow you to pay less than $1 for the materials per square yard. Just make sure that you know how to install the floors and that you are getting quality materials for the cost. If you need help with installation, go through a retailer that can 'bundle' the services of installation and materials for one low price.