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Value Propositions: Wood Flooring

When you’re building a new home, there are so many items to select, you will literally make hundreds of decisions as you go through the process. Having a firm idea of your budget is critical.

 

Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 1.18.49 PM Enlisting the aid of a designer or architect will make the process of narrowing choices easier and help ensure you get the most for your money. Logs aside, some of the other big-ticket items in your build include windows, doors, flooring, roofing and stone masonry. Here’s a look at some of the factors that determine costs of these materials, what you get for the money and how to make smart choices.

Wood Flooring

Costs vary widely, but hard wood is generally more expensive than laminate reproductions. However, price should be just one consideration when choosing a flooring material: aesthetics and durability are just as important. For many log home owners, the look of natural wood can’t be beat.

Value Laminate wood flooring, $1 to $2 per square foot

Pros:

  • Fairly easy for DIYers to install
  • Very inexpensive
  • Does not require polishing
  • No fading or color change from exposure to sunlight

Cons:

  • Can’t be refinished when damaged
  • Shorter lifespan than well-maintained solid-wood flooring
  • Grain patterns tend to repeat, revealing it as a fake

Splurge Reclaimed antique rustic heart-pine flooring, $8 to $13 per square foot

Pros:

  • Interesting grain patterns and patina
  • Able to be refinished several times, prolonging lifespan
  • Available in a wide range of plank widths
  • Can be repaired

Cons:

  • Significantly more expensive than laminate
  • Finite resource
  • May need to be finished onsite (if it’s not available as a pre-finished product)
  • Susceptible to scratches, stains and fading

Cost of ownership: A laminate wood floor’s lifespan will most likely be shorter than real wood, but its cost can be much lower. Authentic wood flooring may be expected in a high-end log home — at least in the main public spaces.