When it is time to remodel and replace the flooring in your home, many homeowners are thinking green. The number of green flooring products available continues to grow, and that growth brings us to the subject of this blog — Which floor products are green, sustainable and economical? Let’s get started.
Cork — The Bark of a Mediterranean Species of Oak
We’ve used cork for centuries as a means of keeping wine in a bottle. As a textile, it made its way into homes by becoming a product for walls. As a flooring product cork is awesome. Not only is it beautiful and full of character, it provides a softness and warmth to any room in which it is used. Cork is highly sustainable. It is the bark of a species of oak tree. The bark is stripped and it regrows in about three years time. You can find cork in the $3 range per square feet. So it is affordable and the economy of cork is achieved by the value it adds to your home.
Bamboo — It’s Actually a Grass
If you have ever grown bamboo you probably realize that it grows like a weed. That is because it is a grass. Bamboo fiber is also very strong — on the same tinsel strength as steel. Because of its super fast growth rate, bamboo is highly sustainable. It is also a product that is making its way into many areas of industry, including as a prime green flooring product. Economically speaking bamboo is priced in the $2-$3 per square foot range. The difference between bamboo and cork is that bamboo fibers grow in a very linear way. It is much more uniform in pattern whereas cork provides a very beautiful abstract pattern. Both flooring products are amazing in the right setting.
Other Choices for Sustainable Flooring Products
Wool carpet is a very sustainable product it runs in the $9 per square foot price range. It is not as economical as bamboo, but for the most part, it is affordable when used as an area rug rather than carpeting.
Reclaimed hardwoods offer something unique and that is their grain patterns. Many of trees that were used in creating the lumber for these floors were old growth trees. The grain pattern is very beautiful and because old growth means lots of growing time, you don’t find the grain quality in new growth trees. Still, using reclaimed hardwood is a green action, it is not economical, even though it is valuable. If you are interested in reclaimed hardwoods but afraid of the price, consider using it as trim for around your floor as an inlay. Either option creates a beautiful floor and adds value to your home.
Hardwood Flooring is also sustainable and green. Hardwood floors run in the $8 per square foot range. They add a lot of value and when installed properly last for generations.
As a comparison to high-end green flooring products, these four options provide homeowners with a lot of room to improve their homes without breaking the bank. A good example of why these products are economical, we can look at reclaimed hardwood flooring which runs in the $40 plus per square foot price range.
When it comes to green flooring, homeowners have options. Some offer affordability and others offer a unique opportunity to embrace sustainable products. Either way, high-quality floors add value to the quality of home life and value to your home. Give us a call today to schedule your free in-home consultation!