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Fantastic Flooring: What to Choose and Why
Flooring is important. In fact, the addition of new flooring is by far one of the most effective methods of beautifying your house.
Materials
Like any other addition to your home, flooring materials should be as practical as they are beautiful. To ensure that you make the right decision, here are six popular choices to point you in the right direction.
Carpet
Carpet is a popular flooring choice for a variety of reasons, chief among which is comfort. Laying down on hardwood or stone just isn't the same as relaxing on a plush, carpeted floor. Carpet stays warm in the winter, cool in the summer and acts as a great sound absorber -- both room to room and between floors.
Ceramic Tile
Many homeowners are opting for tile over more elaborate alternatives. Not only does tile offer an enormous variety of styles and designs, but it's easy to clean (and repair) as well.
Stone
Stone floors are the top choice for breathtaking beauty. Although stone is an excellent (and attractive) choice, the upkeep associated with these floors is constant. Granite and marble, while much tougher to crack than ceramic tile, are more vulnerable to water damage and other stains. Polished varieties of stone also require daily maintenance to ensure that dirt and dust don't damage or dull the finish.
Hardwood
You can't beat the beauty, warmth and elegance of a hardwood floor. While hardwood is less durable than other materials, the application of a urethane finish will help to prevent the inevitable scratching that comes with this type of flooring. Also, refinishing your hardwood (multiple times if necessary) is an easy way to breathe life back into your investment (something that isn't possible with most other materials).
Laminate
Laminate floors are quickly becoming one of the most sought after materials on the market. Laminate can mimic almost any surface, though different hardwood varieties are by far the most popular. Also, laminates are virtually impossible to scratch and highly stain- and water-resistant.
Vinyl
Vinyl is perhaps the most durable and cost-friendly flooring solution on the market. It doesn't turn eyes, but you can't beat a linoleum floor when it comes to practicality and price.
Specialty Materials
You don't have to limit your flooring options to standard materials. Rubber flooring is tough and long lasting when applied in the right setting. If you're looking for a green flooring solution, consider bamboo. Bamboo is as durable and beautiful as hardwood, but made from a renewable resource. Talk to a flooring professional to get a complete list of great flooring materials.

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