DREAM HOME WITH A BUDGET
If you ask any woman, she could probably tell you on the spot at least five interior design characteristics of her dream home. I know mine would include distressed exotic wood floors in all common areas, solid surface countertops, natural stone floor baths, glass mosaics backsplashes and uber soft carpet in the bedrooms. All of the home improvement magazines boast articles of beautiful homes built with these types of finishes and are loaded with advertisements of premium products so no wonder we all want them, right? Problem is… these trends can only be afforded by 10% of the population. So what’s realistic for the other 90%? It pretty much comes down to three things:
1. Simple Looks
We’ve noticed that when people select flooring and countertops for their homes, they tend to opt for neutrals and stick to a simple look, avoiding too many patterns, bold colors and the like. Some designers might call this “boring” but it makes perfect sense to the majority of homeowners. Why? Because neutral doesn’t go out of style – it has staying power! Flooring and countertops are semi-permanent things. They are expensive (although an investment) and a lot of trouble to replace. There’s moving whole rooms of furniture, removing and replacing millwork, prep work… the list goes on. Selecting neutrals and avoiding the latest fad delays the need to update saving money in the long run. Not to mention a fairly neutral slate is blank slate to everyone; meaning it’s good for selling and resale. A unique look can still be created with accessories, paint, furniture, etc.
To create interest with floor tiles, try using larger sizes such as 20 x 20’s or 12 x 24’s. These larger sizes are more unique and cost just a little more than standard sizes and are typically the same cost to install.
For a kitchen backsplash, select a simple tile and install with a pattern.
2. Long Lasting Product
Our customers want longevity. Most of selecting a long lasting product is knowing the right application to use it in. For example, a long-yarn frieze carpet is luxurious and beautiful, but if you put it on a stairway it’s going to look like a trampled mess in no time. Or, if you buy a shiny wood floor and there’s or going to be an 80 pound dog living there, the money was wasted. So, when exploring flooring options, it’s best to consider traffic patterns, and who is going to be using the room and what is the room used for. Designers and homeowners should educate themselves on the product and ask questions! It’s the best way to get every bang for your buck. By the way, low pile or cut loop is the answer for stairs or high traffic areas. The higher the pile (or length of yarn), the more matting will occur.
Long Lasting Ideas:
Laminate floors and luxury vinyl tiles. These products have come a long way. There are floors that look so close to real wood or tile that it takes a professional to tell the difference. The wood looks have graining and texture; the tile ones even have grout if you want it. Bottom line, they cost less, look just as good, and can last a long time. They are also easier to maintain than tile, natural stone especially. Great options for busy families with young children or pets.
Granite countertops. I know it might seem a little radical since we’re talking about a budget but granite prices are significantly less than other solid surfaces such as Cambria or Silestone. It’s an expense up front but what you’re getting is a naturally indestructible product that will stand the test of time. Not only that, but it’s beautiful and timeless. Homeowners love granite countertops.
Some people say that quality and value go hand in hand. I’d say that in most cases it’s true, but when you’re on a budget, you have to weigh your expenses and choose the best investment you can afford. Getting the best value can also mean downgrading in one area so you can upgrade somewhere else… a vinyl floor is a vinyl floor, they all are pretty darn “resilient” if you ask me. However, when it comes to carpeting, don’t skimp because the type of yarn and composition makes all the difference under your feet and for durability.
Formica 180FX: I thought I’d bring this up incase you didn’t like my granite idea. 180FX is a laminate countertop that is designed in a very large pattern with veining and natural flaws just like granite. (Why didn’t they think of this sooner?!) And, it’s only a small upgrade from the standard laminate countertops compared to real granite.
Written by Katy Kiekbusch, employee at Village Floor