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Unconventional Flooring Materials for your Home

September 30th, 2010 · 2 Comments

When a consumer thinks of the possible flooring materials that can be installed in a home, there are probably about three products that come to mind: carpet, wood and tile.

But today, since the market for flooring materials has greatly increased, it has given consumers more options to choose from when they are looking for new floors for their home. Gone are the days of having wall-to-wall carpet, tile or wood in your home. As more materials emerge onto the scene and consumers being to experiment with these new types of flooring product choices, word is spreading quickly about the available options that can be used in residences.

Creativity and thinking outside the box has led to a rise in using more eco-friendly and natural building products and materials in consumer’s homes. There has been a recent spike in the use of bamboo, concrete, glass tiles, cork and river rocks as flooring surfaces, as more consumers learn of these materials’ aesthetic – and sometimes budget friendly – appeal.

A highly visually appealing and natural material which has been around since the dawn of time is making an emergence into the flooring scene. The use of river rocks and natural stones in homes is becoming more and more popular – especially in bathrooms. The look of the stones is very relaxing giving bathrooms and other areas in homes an open, natural feel. As they are a product of nature, most stones will have natural flaws that will give a unique and artistic look to the floor, as opposed to tile which generally has a uniform look.

According to an article on Findanyfloor.com, when stone flooring is properly installed and maintained, the surface can last several lifetimes. Most stone surfaces can be placed both inside and outside, opening up the possibilities of where the flooring can be used. As stone is a naturally porous material that will hold water and small particles, the final surface needs to be sealed properly and treated occasionally to prevent changes in the floor’s appearance. Doing the process often enough will ensure that your floors maintain its initial look and ensure a longer life span.

Although the thought of installing stones as a flooring surface may sound intimidating, many stores sell the stones in sheets that are very easily installed. However, Findanyfloor.com recommends that unless you are an experienced installer you should hire a professional to do the job.

Another earth friendly material that has grown in popularity is cork. Made from a cork tree, cork is a durable, low cost alternative to traditional flooring materials. A major plus to using cork is that the floors are made from refuse of cork bottle-stopping production, making it a recycled product.

There are many benefits to installing cork flooring. Other than having a natural and visually appealing quality, cork is also highly durable and easy to install. Cork has an added softness to it as compared to hardwood floors, giving high traffic areas a longer life span and decreases the need for repairs. Cork flooring is a great insulator and also reduces the amount of sound. Visit Corkfloor.com for a complete look at the benefits to cork flooring.

Glass is another material that shows up in almost every home you can think of. Whether it is used in the home’s windows or doors, it is a popular building material for residences. But of recent times, glass tiles are being used in showers and kitchens, added splashes of color to surfaces.

According to Glasstileoasis.com, installing glass tiles in backsplashes of kitchens is a common practice. But with more use of the product, consumers are also experimenting with using glass on floors. Although not recommended for the entire surface as it is a less durable product than other materials, glass tiles make great accent and border pieces. They generally come in square sheets that are easy to install and the variety of colors and designs are practically unlimited.

Whether you are interested in the above options for your home or are looking for a different alternative, doing the research and finding the material that best suits your needs is key. Take the time to read the pros and cons of each material and weigh out your options. An educated buy makes for a good buy.

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