The Best Flooring for Living Rooms

Many homeowners or interior designers overlook the importance of choosing the right flooring for a specific space and its purpose.  While cork floors might look nice in a bathroom, tile would be better suited for the high-moisture area.  And even though the look of polished concrete is in vogue, it doesn’t exactly help a living room feel, well, livable.  

Living rooms are sometimes the trickiest rooms to find the right flooring for.  Depending on the existing interior of your home, your geographical location, and the size of the room itself, some flooring options will trump others.   

Carpet: This is a no-brainer, especially if you have young children.  Wall to wall carpeting, or even a large area rug, are both great options to cozy up a living room.  Carpet provides a soft surface for children to play on and when properly cared for, can last many years.  This is also a great option for any size room, as well as any climate.

Wood Flooring: Where carpet lacks, wood flooring prevails.  Wood is easy to clean after spills and other mishaps.  It can also be versatile when switching out any rugs sitting on top of it.  Aside from functionality, wood floors are a classic choice for a living room and may add to the value of your home.  However, there are a few types of wood that will look best:

  • Wide Planks:  No matter the stain, wide planks decrease the amount of seams and can make for a flawless, warm look.  This is definitely a flooring to try!
  • Whitewash:  If there’s any room where whitewashed floorboards will look their best, it’s a living room.  The lighter flooring gives homeowners flexibility as far as wall color, furniture choices and rug patterns. 
  • Dark Stains:  And, like lighter floor stains, traditional darker ones are always a popular choice.  They add warmth to a space and can be dressed up to match any room designs. 
  • What to Avoid:  It’s recommended to avoid flooring with busy grain patterns.  While they work with plain or mild patterned throw rugs, they don’t give homeowners much flexibility if they choose to redecorate.

Laminate:  Love the look of wood flooring but hate to see it ruined over time?  Opt for laminate flooring instead.  Many laminate floorings can be made to look like your favorite authentic wood grain, but stand up better against scratches, dents, spills, and life in general. Because of its durability, laminate floorings are also a great choice for families with young children or pets.

Pavers: Believe it or not, pavers are an excellent option for living rooms, especially patio style living areas.  It adds a rustic and organic feel to a room and can be enhanced with the room décor.  To warm up a room with brick or stone pavers, throw rugs and comfy furniture are a must.

Rugs: Whether over carpet, wood floors, laminate or pavers, rugs easily add more character to a living room.  Layering them or choosing bold prints is a great way to bring more drama to a space without fully committing to a trendy wall color.  If you err on the traditional side, a large-scale oriental rug instantly adds a grandiose touch to a living room.

With all of these great flooring options, it’s easy to see how a homeowner might have trouble picking just one.  As always, a flooring professional in your area can help you to find the best flooring for your living room – or any room for that matter!