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'Lots to consider' for hardwood floors

UK property owners planning the installation of hardwood floors have been advised of the large number of considerations they should take into account when deciding what is the best option to meet their needs.

Tom Jennings, chairman of the World Floor Covering Association Services, said people need to be aware of how the flooring will be installed, as this will have an impact on the most appropriate choice for homeowners.

Solid or engineered planks is another consideration, as is the type of finish that is desired, as well as the level of scratch-resistance.

Mr Jennings also noted hardwood flooring may not be the most appropriate choice for every room in the house.

He commented: "Since wood is inherently the most sensitive flooring type when moisture is present, it is typically not recommended in a bath area where there is a tub or shower present, as these will generate an excessive amount of humidity. This can cause the grain to open and the planks to swell."

Mr Jennings added that other decisions that need to be made include choosing the hardness and pattern of the wood's grain, as this will impact on the overall aesthetic and also longevity of the flooring.

Furthermore, property owners should take into account the credentials of a flooring vendor when deciding what is the right material for them.

According to Ed Korczak, executive director and chief executive officer of the National Wood Flooring Association, it is important that people make the right choices when installing hardwood floors, as if done correctly, these fittings can be a major benefit to interior design and even property value for many years to come.

He argued: "Hardwood floors that are installed and maintained properly can last for hundreds of years. There are many examples of wood floors in Europe that are 300-plus years old and still beautiful." 

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