For homeowners, choosing between carpet and hardwood floors can be a difficult decision. They both possess strengths and they both possess weaknesses. It ultimately comes down to which one is best for you and your family at the present time. However, breaking down the individual perks can help make the decision just a little bit easier.
The Cost of Flooring
When it comes to cost, carpet tends to have an edge over hardwood. In short, it’s cheaper. Carpet averages around three to five dollars per square foot installed. Compared to the cost of hardwood—which is around nine to twelve dollars per square foot installed—almost double the price of the carpet.
Still, it’s important to remember that hardwood lasts much longer than carpet. In many cases, hardwood will last decades and decades. Carpet, on the other hand, will not—though proper care can extend its longevity. Thus, some of the money you may shell out for hardwood can be attributed to its status as a solid investment.
Both carpet and hardwood require cleaning unless you plan to never actually walk on your flooring. And, in regard to tidiness, both have strengths. Hardwood is easier to clean, often requiring little more than soap and water. But it also requires more frequent cleaning; because the carpet is good at hiding dirt, it can last longer between scrubbings.
Whether or not you have pets (or children) may impact your decision. Animals—particularly if they aren’t fully housebroken—and children—especially toddlers—have the ability to take pristine carpets and make them anything but. Cats may also use your carpet as their personal scratching post. For these reasons, hardwood floors may be a better option for you.
Overall, carpet is easier to install than hardwood. This may matter to you if you’re doing the installation yourself. The installation of carpet is also much faster which, at least in part, helps contribute to the high price of hardwood.
Allergens and Flooring Choices
If your family is prone to allergies, hardwood may be a better option for you than carpet. Per the Mayo Clinic, hardwood floors are recommended for anyone sensitive to allergens, especially asthmatics. If carpet is still your style of choice—or the only thing within your budget—you can still decrease allergens by purchasing low-pile carpet rather than high and vacuuming weekly with a cleaner that has a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter. You should also shampoo carpeting regularly.
The Ambience of Hardwood Floors
Hardwood floors and carpets produce different types of ambiance. According to Bayou City Lumber, a company that has affordable Fiberon Decking available, hardwood tends to produce a cleaner, more rustic look while the carpet is warmer (both in ambiance and on bare feet). The carpet is also quieter, as walking on hardwood can be noisy.
The Resale Value of Your Home
If you’re planning to stay in your home for decades to come, the resale value may be of little concern to you. But, if you’re considering selling in the next few years, resale value may be something for you to take into consideration. Hardwood floors are in higher demand, which equates them with a higher overall resale value.