Choosing the right flooring is one of the most important things to think about when decorating your home. Since the 1930s, carpet has been the material of choice, and while wood flooring did become more popular in the 1980s and 1990s, carpet has always come out on top for a number of reasons:
1. It’s Soft and Warm
One of the main benefits of carpet is that it’s soft and warm. Particularly suitable for living rooms and bedrooms, it’s ideal for creating an area for relaxation and comfort, and can even be used in bathrooms, providing it’s water-resistant. As well as being comfortable and soothing beneath bare feet, carpet is great for cushioning falls, making it perfect for children’s bedrooms and play areas, and it’s much warmer than hardwood floors. Not only does it act like a blanket for your feet, but it also insulates the room by keeping warmth inside.
2. It’s Cheaper to Maintain
Unlike carpets, hardwood floors can be damaged by stiletto shoes or fallen objects. Repairing damaged wood can be expensive and time-consuming, involving a great deal of sanding, revarnishing and polishing. With carpeted flooring, you have peace-of-mind, as there is less chance of injury and broken objects from a trip or fall.
3. It’s Cheaper to Buy
At an average of just £3 to £6 per square metre, carpet is considerably less expensive than wood, and a top-quality carpet can last between ten and 15 years. Frequent vacuuming and steam cleaning once a year can extend its life even further, making the long term cost of carpet much cheaper than many hardwood materials.
4. It’s Easier to Install
Laying down wooden flooring involves a great deal of nailing and gluing, meaning it’s a much bigger commitment. As carpet is easier and quicker to install, changing styles when redecorating is much more feasible.
5. There’s More Choice
Whether you want a luxurious shag pile carpet or a more practical flatweave, there’s much more choice when it comes to styles and designs. As well as making rooms look cosier and more welcoming, patterned carpets can make a real design impact.
6. There’s Less Cleaning
Because carpet hides dirt, it doesn’t need to be cleaned as often as wood. It’s recommended that a family of four should vacuum just once a week and products like Scotchgard Carpet Protector can help to prevent stains. What’s more, carpet has the added benefit of not aggravating asthma and allergies as it traps airborne dust particles which can be easily disposed of by vacuuming.
7. It’s Quieter
One of the most common complaints about hardwood floors is that when they are installed on upper levels, every footstep can be heard below, and some even squeak in certain spots. Carpet solves this problem as it provides padding which muffles sound and it is often used by people living in blocks of flats who want to be considerate of their neighbours.
Carpet may not be cool but it certainly does the trick for so many reasons. Think about it.
Brian Wales is a home improvement specialist and interior designer. He provides insights and commentary on industry trends via his blog.