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Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Flooring

Updated: Mar 8

A living room with hardwood floor.

Every year homeowners across Washington state upgrade the flooring of their residential homes. But why? The most common reasons we hear are said to be from changing the design of the home to improve the living conditions for the residents, but there should be more to it than that. 

At Fresh Floors & Surfaces, we want to help homeowners in King County make informed decisions about their flooring needs. But how can one know when the right time is to upgrade the floors of their residential properties and identify their needs? After conducting some in-depth research on these questions and drawing our conclusions from them, we have compiled the top ten reasons why you should upgrade the flooring in your residential homes. We hope this list will provide helpful information for you and let you think about whether your flooring should be changed soon based on these reasons. 


1. Better Insulation 

Imagine waking up in the morning during the winter. The weather may be cold outside, but at least you feel warm from under the covers. You get yourselves off your bed and stretch your legs as you are about to leave your room to begin your day. But as soon as you get onto the floor, your feet suddenly feel cold when they touch the hard surface of it. 

The scenario above can happen to you if you live in a cold climate. It doesn’t matter if you wear your socks and/or slippers, your feet will still feel chilly on the hard surface of your floor. A simple solution would be to just turn up the heat. But what if you are someone who wants to save money on electricity? After all, utility bills can get expensive during the fall and winter seasons since many people want to have their heat on so they can warm up their houses. 

Different flooring materials can affect the temperature you feel in your house. Hard surface floors can cool you down during the hot summer. However, carpets can add an extra layer of insulation to the house and can even absorb the heat. If you always feel cold during the winter, you should switch from having hardwood floors to carpet. This can help keep your feet warm without having to turn up the heat and you can reduce energy costs. 


2. Save Time on Maintenance 

Your current flooring might be the reason why your cleaning chore is tedious and exhausting. Hard surface floors are notorious for attracting dust and debris, which can not only spread throughout the house but also cause both scratches and discoloration to the boards. Not to mention stains can damage the boards if they aren’t cleaned right away. Meanwhile, carpets need to be vacuumed frequently to get rid of trapped particles on the fibers and prevent the spread of bacteria and dust mites. Not everyone has the time or patience to maintain their current flooring. Living with someone who frequently makes a mess can add an extra level of stress to their floor cleaning routine. 

So, if you are tired of dealing with this, perhaps you should switch to a low-maintenance flooring option to save more time on cleaning. In addition, upgrading your flooring can help you save money on utility. For example, if you are someone who regularly vacuums but wishes to lower the cost of your electricity bills, then you should upgrade to a different type of flooring where you can sweep it with a broom instead. Some homeowners replaced their carpets with hardwood floors for this reason, which can regulate temperature and reduce energy costs throughout the year. 


3. Upgrade the Home's Aesthetic 

When it comes to redecorating, floors are commonly the first thing that comes to mind since they are the largest interior surface of the house. However, we find that a change in your flooring aesthetic can also affect how people think about your lifestyle. This is because an interior design is meant to reflect a resident’s personality and style. If you ever have guests coming over for a visit, the last thing you want is to be judged based on what the inside of your house looks like. Your current flooring might be an outdated style that not many people have in their homes anymore. Not to mention, it would have a smelly odor and a large amount of dust trapped on the surface if left unchanged, which can disgust your visitors.  

Your taste in interior design can change as you get older. And you can't have your guests walk inside your house only to find the rooms to be untidy or lack style. So, if you ever plan on redecorating and providing a good first impression, why don’t you start by giving your floors a fresh, new look? When picking from a wide range of flooring options, try to find one with the right style that can complement your home aesthetics. It is your home, so you should decorate whatever fits you personally.


4. Enhance a Room's Functionality 

Whether you live alone or not, certain types of flooring are practical for a specific room. You should pick the right flooring type that can be beneficial for your everyday activities around the house and can withstand wear and tear. Softer floor surfaces, like carpets, are commonly installed in rooms that can provide a comfortable environment for the occupants to walk and stand on for extended periods. Damp areas, like kitchens and bathrooms, would have tile floors that are resistant to moisture to prevent issues like mold and mildew. And since it is the most used room in the house, the common flooring type for a living room is hard surfaces, like hardwood, to provide a wider space. 

Consider the amount of foot traffic, which is the number of people frequently walking in your house, as well as any heavy loads like furniture. Depending on the quality of the materials, some flooring types can wear off quickly if they can’t withstand an additional amount of weight that is on the surface. An increase in foot traffic like a new person or pet living with you would require an upgrade to more durable and easy-to-clean flooring. 


5. Reduce Noise Level 

Whether you live alone or not, it can be frustrating if you constantly get unwanted noises that echo throughout the house. Most people would blame their thin walls and high ceilings since the noise their fellow occupants made would be transmitted right through them. However, we find that it’s not just the ceilings and walls that need to be sound-absorbed. 

Echoes commonly happen when sound waves bounce between hard surfaces in a room. It doesn’t matter what size the room is. Hardwood floors are the common cause of this since soundwaves can bounce up into the ceilings and walls which can reverberate back, especially in empty spaces. They won’t stop until they land on a softer surface that can absorb the sound. It can also happen if there is too much foot traffic in the house. People who wear shoes inside the house would cause a much louder echo in every step they take on the hard surface floors. 

Certain flooring types with sound-absorbing properties can enhance the overall comfort and tranquility within the home. If you prefer keeping your hard surface floors in your house but want to reduce the echoes, you should consider adding sound-dampening underlays that are made from foam, fiberboard, or rubber. You should even place as many soft materials like upholstered furniture and area rugs in a room as possible to reduce the sounds that bounce from the floors. But if you are someone who wants to upgrade the entire floor of a room, then choose a softer flooring type like carpets. They won’t reflect the sounds and would instead absorb them. Whichever flooring option you want, you should find one that can create a more peaceful living environment for your house. 


6. Improve Indoor Air Quality 

A home should provide a positive living environment for the residents. However, certain materials used for a flooring type can negatively affect your indoor air quality, especially if it’s damaged. There can be serious health issues for everyone inside the house caused by your old flooring if you don’t upgrade it as soon as possible. 

Soft surface flooring can trap dirt and other particles onto the fiber. However, they can’t last forever and will eventually wear out near the end of their lifespan. If they don’t get changed, it can lead to an increase in allergens and smelly odors released from the surfaces. As for hard surface flooring, it can be a breeding ground for mold and mildew growth from underneath the boards, especially if they get water damage. These fungus and bacteria can release spores into the air and cause respiratory issues for the household. 

When flooring is worn, cracked, or water-damaged, it can create spaces where dirt and debris can build up and become airborne when disturbed. This circulating dust can exacerbate respiratory issues, allergies, and other health problems, especially for individuals with sensitive immune systems. However, it can even compromise the integrity of the building's structure. This can potentially expose occupants to hazardous materials like asbestos or lead that may be present in older flooring materials. So, if you don’t upgrade to a fresh, new floor as soon as possible, then it can create a cascade of issues that negatively impact air quality and everyone’s health inside the house. 


7. Provide an Eco-Friendly Living Environment 

Switching to eco-friendly flooring can have benefits for your home. Typical flooring materials contain harmful chemicals, such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs). When VOCs from the surfaces are released into the air, they contribute to indoor air pollution and cause respiratory irritation to the occupants. Eco-friendly flooring, though, lacks toxic chemicals since they are made out of sustainably recycled sources. This allows them to minimize waste and reduce environmental impact, which further contributes to their extended lifespan.

If you are environmentally conscious and want to upgrade your flooring, here are our recommendations on the best sustainable flooring options that you can pick from our three flooring installation services.

  • Hardwood: Bamboo, black cherry, cork, maple, and oak.

  • Carpet: Jute, linoleum, seagrass, sisal, and wool.

  • Tiles: Ceramic, cork, linoleum, porcelain, and terracotta.

By opting for environmentally friendly flooring, you can play a role in reducing carbon footprint and promoting a more sustainable lifestyle overall. You can even help support ethical labor practices and reduce the environmental impact of the manufacturing process. This includes reducing the demand for new resources and helps in preserving forests.


8. Increase Safety for Residents 

It’s not just the health and functionality of the house that requires a flooring upgrade. There’s also the safety of the residents to consider. If you are someone who doesn’t regularly wear shoes in the house and prefers either going barefoot or wearing socks, you must be cautious while walking on the surface. They can become slippery not only by spills but also by dirt and grime if they aren’t maintained properly. Because of this, many homeowners would want to upgrade their flooring to a softer and safer surface, such as carpets. 

However, even if you already have a safer flooring option in your house, we advise that you also check and make sure all your current flooring doesn't have any damage or cracks. If your hard surface floors have cracks and are unleveled, someone might accidentally lose their balance and fall if they accidentally get their foot stuck between the floorboards or tiles. And despite carpets being commonly described as a safer flooring surface to walk on, they can become dangerous if they start to wear out and become a tripping hazard for the occupants.

Accidents can happen, so you need to upgrade your floors to reduce the risk of serious injuries within the home, particularly in high-traffic or wet areas. 


9. Raise the Property Value 

This reason is mainly for readers who are planning on moving. When looking at real estate listings, you might notice that many houses are being sold at a high price while some are being sold lower. Did you ever wonder what’s up with the difference in value? You are planning to move to a new house, but how can you quickly sell your current one and get people interested in buying it? Well, the secret behind this is the house’s flooring. 

While a house’s exterior may be beautiful to look at, what’s inside the house can affect the decision of the potential buyer. Most houses that are listed have pictures of what the rooms look like without any furniture. People want to see if you take good care of your home over the years before you put it on the market. So, they would easily judge the floors from the pictures they saw. If they notice your flooring has an outdated style or looks damaged, then they won’t be interested in buying your house and will move on to the next one.

If you ever plan on increasing your home’s value, you should consider changing your flooring. However, we advise that you should think about your potential buyer’s needs before calling a specialist. Hardwood floors are said to be the reason for a home’s increase in value. However, it’s not ideal to have hardwood floors in every room of your house if you are planning on selling it. People want to find a new home that can fit their everyday lifestyle and make it feel like they haven’t left their previous one. So, try to find the right balance of flooring types for your house.  


10. Your Current Flooring is Near Its Prime 

While this final reason sounds obvious, what you may not know is that certain flooring types have a life expectancy. The following is the average lifespan for the three flooring types we are currently providing. 

  • Hardwood floors: 30 to 100 years. This depends on the type of wood used for the boards and the weather it’s in. Solid hardwood can last for 100 years, while engineered hardwood can last only 50 years. Foot traffic also plays a factor in the lifespan of both. 

  • Carpet: 5 to 15 years. This, of course, varies between the types of carpet you have as well as the fiber quality. Just like with hardwood floors, it also depends on foot traffic and the number of residents in a household. 

  • Tile floors: 75 to 100 years. This depends on the quality and the material of the tiles themselves. 

When you look at the numbers, you might think you shouldn’t be worried about it. But you should. The average numbers were calculated from various homeowners who regularly clean their floors. If part of your house chores is to vacuum the carpet and/or sweep the floor, don’t slack off from doing it. Just because a change of flooring type can save money on utility bills, it doesn’t mean you should do only the bare minimum of cleaning.  

Your current flooring can’t last forever. They can get damaged over time and if you don’t do regular maintenance for them, it can shorten their lifespan. These are the signs for when your flooring is damaged and in need of replacement. 

  • Hardwood floors: There are constant squeaking sounds as well as visible scratches and cracks on the boards. Hardwood floors are also sensitive to high humidity and moisture. In other words, it’s not water-resistant. Water damage can lead to the boards suffering from molding, cupping (the edges are higher than its center), crowning (the center is higher than its edges), buckling (being pulled up from the subfloor), discoloration, and swelling. 

  • Carpet: There are unremovable stains that can leave a foul smell in the house. Allergic reactions can occur to the residents due to the carpet trapping various particles onto the deteriorated fibers. Carpets can also get discolored due to exposure to sunlight as well as losing their softness if there's a large amount of foot traffic. 

  • Tile floors: There are visible cracks, chips, tents, unremovable stains, and scratches on the tiles. Unlike hardwood floors and carpets, tile flooring is water-resistant. However, water damage can occur under the tiles if you’re not careful. This can lead to stains in the grout lines, one or more tile(s) coming loose, molding, and discoloration. 

Most homeowners manage to have their current flooring survive for another decade of its lifespan because they choose to have durable flooring types and clean them frequently. This increases the longevity of the floors, reducing the need for frequent replacements and maintenance. 

With proper installation and maintenance, a change in flooring can transform a home into a more functional, comfortable, and inviting space for occupants to enjoy. 


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