They’re Not in Your Budget
There’s no doubt about it—hardwood floors are beautiful. They are also pricey. Hardwood is among the most expensive flooring options, more than double the cost of carpeting. So, if your budget is tight, you may want to skip the hardwood.
You Have Pets
Pets—particularly dogs—are rough on hardwood flooring. They track in mud and dirt from outside, and their nails scratch the finish. Pets are also prone to accidents, especially when they’re young, that leave stains and smells that are very difficult to remove. If you share your home with pets, you may not want to put hardwood at the top of your flooring list.
You Have Kids
Kids, especially little ones, run a close second to pets on the hard-on-hardwood-floors scale. Children tend to drag cleats, tap shoes, scooters, and all manner of other floor-damaging paraphernalia around the house, in the process nicking, scraping, and scratching those beautiful boards. As well, hardwood floors are not that comfortable to roll around and play on.
You Don’t Want the Maintenance
Hardwood floors are not low maintenance by any stretch of the imagination. They require regular sweeping and cleaning to prevent surface damage and to keep them looking nice. And you need to clean them with products that won't damage the finish, and be extra careful with water. If you don’t have time to take care of hardwood, look for a different flooring solution.
You Need Some Soundproofing
Your Joints Can’t Take the Stress
Hardwood flooring does not have nearly the give of carpet or vinyl. Standing on a hardwood floor for a lengthy period can be uncomfortable, especially for those who suffer from joint issues. If your physical needs require a more cushioned flooring surface, look to something other than hardwood.
It Can Feel Generic
Maybe it's because they get so much play on real estate and home improvement shows, but hardwood floors have become so popular that they're seen as must-haves in new home construction. For this reason, they're starting to seem generic. If you really want your home decor to pop with originality, hardwood floors may not be the ticket.
They WILL Squeak
No matter how expensive or new they are, or how well they’ve been installed, all hardwood floors will eventually squeak. It’s the nature of the beast. Unfortunately, the fix is not always easy. If a little squeaking down the road is going to drive you crazy, think about carpet instead.
They Won’t Necessarily Increase Your Home’s Value
Don’t install hardwood floors just because you think they'll make your home more valuable. That's often the case, but there are no guarantees. Because they’re almost expected in new homes, they’re not as highly valued as they used to be.
Let’s face it: Hardwood floors get dirty fast. You sweep in the morning, and before the day's over you can see your footprints in the dust that’s settled since. If you want your hardwood floors to look good all the time, you have to keep up with them every day.
Related: 8 Cleaning Mistakes Everyone Makes
You Still Need Area Rugs
Yes, you still have to buy rugs, even if you have hardwood floors. Rugs help absorb sound and bring visual and actual warmth to a room. An undressed wood floor can be cold and uncomfortable, particularly if you like to stretch out and relax on the floor. So, if area rugs are not your thing, then hardwood floors probably won't be either.
Related: 10 Area Rugs You Can Actually Afford
The Hard Truth
Hardwood floors are beautiful, but they're not the right answer for everyone. Luckily, there are plenty of other excellent flooring options out there.
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