WHY HARDWOOD FLOORS ARE AWESOME (AND HOW TO KEEP THEM THAT WAY) February 20, 2023 | Home Maintenance , DIY , Cleaning Tips , Home Decor | floors , living room , bedroom , office Finding the perfect look for your home can take a lot of experimentation before everything comes together. Maybe a new shade of paint is the missing ingredient for your living room, or perhaps it’s a new set of countertops that would result in the kitchen of your dreams. While there are many changes that can radically alter the look of a room, there is almost no change as impactful as switching to hardwood floors. For many new homeowners, installing hardwood floors is at the top of their to-do list. While carpet can provide a feeling of warmth and comfort for a family, any new occupants may see old carpeted areas as a den of decades-old germs and allergens ready to strike. If you haven’t made the switch already, here are a few benefits of hardwood floors, along with some strategies to maintain them. Advantages of Hardwood Flooring For any style or color scheme, hardwood flooring is extremely versatile. While interior design can boil down to a matter of taste, nothing matches the dynamic that hardwood floors can bring to a room—and designers swear by them! While certain woods lend themselves well to certain styles, stains and refinishing options can make your hardwood floors fit any concept. As mentioned earlier, a constant concern for homeowners is the quality of their air. Carpets are known to easily trap dust, dirt, allergens, germs, and other particulate matter. These substances can accumulate and settle, reducing the quality of air within the home (especially for a family with pets). Even flooring options like laminate and tile have grout lines that hardwood floors don’t. Comparatively, hardwood floors are easy to clean and require less maintenance than most other alternatives. For some homeowners, they may be hesitant to commit to hardwood floors due to their steep price tag. Hardwood floors cost more to install than carpet or tile. However, homeowners that make the switch can benefit from its advantages and may actually save money over time. Hardwood flooring (when well-maintained) has a much longer lifespan than carpet. Depending on the wear and tear experienced by carpet, homeowners will likely need to replace their carpeting every 10 years or so. This also assumes that the carpet won’t be permanently stained and need to be replaced even earlier. Meanwhile, well-maintained hardwood floors can last over 100 years. Depending on the specific type of wood, hardwood floors are famously durable. Though they can scratch or dent in areas with heavy traffic, this damage can be easily repaired. Worn sections can be re-stained periodically, and the need for full replacements are extremely rare. Between all of these benefits and the resale value added, every homeowner should consider hardwood floors for their next home upgrade. The Hardwood Floor Care Routine The best way to take care of your beautiful hardwood floors is to develop a consistent maintenance routine. Incorporate these tasks into your regular home maintenance schedule to keep your hardwood floors looking brand new! Daily - Dust your floors every day to work towards preventing scratches and scuffs that gradually grow with regular wear and tear. Dusting reduces the presence of allergens and dust that can lead to sickness. Weekly - Clean your floors with a damp mop and use a cleaner that works with your stain and your wood type. Overcleaning can dull your stain, and cleaners that are too acidic can damage your finish. Be sure to research before selecting the best cleaner for you! Every Three Months - Polish your floors to reduce minor damage and add a renewing shine. Be sure to sweep or vacuum first, and target water-based polish to avoid introducing toxins into your home. Once Every 10 Years - Refinish your floors to restore their original appearance. This is the key step for longevity! A few additional tips: scratches are the number one battle that homeowners with hardwood floors need to combat. High heels and pets with untrimmed nails can cause dings and damage if not regarded with caution. In addition, rugs and placemats can protect highly-trafficked areas or entryways where moisture can collect and cause wood floors to swell. Remember to schedule an inspection with NPI before any major remodel! Only a certified inspector can ensure that your home is in good condition for that next home improvement project. Call National Property Inspection today to be paired with a professional in your area!