Living Room Flooring
Flooring is the foundation for any home design. Sometimes considered the ‘fifth wall,’ flooring can be bold or neutral depending on your design goals.
Choosing flooring that is best for your living room will depend on a few key factors.
As a room that sees plenty of foot traffic, the flooring has to be durable and functional. High-traffic areas make floors more prone to scratches and scuffs, so a tough material is a must.
Living room flooring should also be comfortable, so your family and guests are happy to spend hours together in one space.
Finally, your living room flooring should exist in harmony with your furniture and décor. When your flooring is right, the rest of the room shines, too. A well-designed living room will make you happy and calm every time you walk into a living space that is all your own!
Next, we’ll walk through the pros and cons of some of the most popular living room flooring materials to help you create a living space you’ll love.
Hard-wearing carpet is a classic, time-testing living room flooring choice. Carpet is traditionally made up of fully synthetic fibers or a blend of synthetic and natural fibers. A carpet that is 80% wool and 20% man-made fiber will be plenty resistant to foot traffic and easy to maintain.
Broadloom Carpet Pros:
- Comfortable underfoot
- Often inexpensive
- Many color and style options to choose from
Broadloom Carpet Cons:
- Natural, visible wear and tear over time
- Needs replaced more frequently than hardwood or tile
Natural Carpet Options
When you think of natural flooring for living room spaces, you probably envision hardwood floors or even stone tile floors. But natural carpet is becoming more and more popular. The appearance of natural carpeting brings the outside in, creating a soothing, spa-like effect in your living room.
Natural carpet fibers like wool, sisal, seagrass, and robust coir are the most common options for living room flooring. The design experts at National Design Mart can advise you on the best natural flooring choice based on your design preferences and the amount of foot traffic you expect in your living room.
Natural Carpet Pros:
- Excellent at hiding dirt
- Certain flooring materials, like wool, are very durable
- Can be flame retardant
Natural Carpet Cons:
- Best for higher budgets
- Stains more easily than synthetic carpet
- Some varieties can be less comfortable underfoot
As a third carpeting option, tiles make carpet installing a breeze. Rather than spreading out large rolls of carpet, carpet tiles allow you or an installer to simply place square sections of carpet to the subfloor for a quicker (and often less expensive) installation.
Additionally, carpet tiles tend to produce less waste when installing, making them slightly more eco-friendly than broadloom carpet. Thanks to their small, versatile size, they are also a great choice for carpeting irregularly-shaped spaces.
Carpet Tile Pros:
- Easy to install
- Easy to maintain and repair
- Good for irregularly-shaped spaces
- Comfortable underfoot
Carpet Tile Cons:
- Lower-quality options can leave visible seams
- Uneven wear
Living Room Tile
Tile may be more common in kitchens in bathrooms, but lately, this stylish and durable flooring option has been popular for living rooms, too. The color and style you choose will make all the difference in terms of style, comfort, and strength.
Depending on the look you’re going for, you can use tile to mimic the look of hardwood floors with laminate or vinyl flooring. Or, go bold and create patterns with living room tile. You could border the room with a second color, creating a tile ‘rug.’ If you choose ceramic tile, place a few accent tiles for playfulness and charm.
Living Room Tile Pros:
- Wide variety of colors, styles, and materials
- Extremely durable
- Options for every budget
Living Room Tile Cons:
- Can be cold
- Requires some maintenance
Hardwood flooring in living rooms is a classy and timeless choice. Wood is a breathtaking yet neutral baseline for the rest of your decor, no matter what wood species or stain you choose.
Solid hardwood floors differ by species in durability. Oak, walnut, ebony, and maple are the most durable wood species and best suited for living room floors.
For durability against moisture, engineered hardwood floors are the best option. It’s also important to consider the finish you use on your flooring–they can make your flooring more durable against scratches, but also less flexible to the normal movement of wood.
Hardwood Floor Pros:
- Species like oak and walnut are very durable
- Easy to clean
- Long-lasting investment
Hardwood Floor Cons:
- Occasionally needs sanded and refinished
- Certain species scratch easily
If you’re investing in hardwood floors, consider protecting and embellishing them with a high-quality area rug. National Design Mart carries Ohio’s best selection of designer area rugs, so you can find the perfect rug to fit your design style.
Area rugs are one of the best, low-risk ways to add bold touches of personality to a space. Without any permanent changes or renovations, you can transform the entire look of your living space!
Pros of Area Rugs:
- Endless colors, patterns, and sizes
- Section off smaller areas in large spaces
- Easy to maintain
Cons of Area Rugs:
- Can slip and slide without rug pad
- Can accumulate dust
- Lower-quality rugs may wear quickly
Functional Flooring for Living Spaces
While living room flooring is absolutely a style decision, it is important to choose a material that will be practical for your lifestyle and your family. After all, living spaces serve so many functions–family movie nights, playtime for kids, entertaining guests, and relaxing at home–that durable, functional flooring is a must.
Need help deciding on the most functional and stylish flooring for your living space? Reach out to the interior design experts at National Design Mart. An experienced designer will guide you through our wide range of flooring options, including hardwood flooring, carpet, and area rugs.
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