January 14, 2014

My House | Engineered vs. Laminate Flooring

When selecting finishes for our new house during the building phase we selected basic "contractor grade" flooring.  The carpet is basic, the lino is basic, and so is the little bit of tile that came with the house.  We did this because we knew we would upgrade the flooring ourselves... if we were to have the builder do it it would have been over $15,000!  A total rip off in my opinion! 
This project was on our 5 year plan... but in just over a year the carpet looks horrible!  Granted I know I have two little boys and one dog... but still I would have to have this carpet cleaned every 3 months to keep it looking good!  SO I have talked the hubs into pricing out wood floors!
And yesterday we when shopping!

These are our favorites... but {like some other items in our house... IE the coffee table} we are in a small stand off!  There are 3 options when selecting a hardwood floors; real solid wood, engineered floors, and laminate.  Since I live on a concrete foundation the first option is not available.  Real hardwood needs to be nailed to a sub floor and be able to breath underneath... not doable with concrete.  So we can choose from engineered or laminate, both floating options.  
Both have their pros and cons but here are our pros and cons:  

Laminate Pro: price point, durability                          Laminate Con: Hallow Sounding, fake looking

Engineered Pro: Real looking, solid sound             Engineered Con: Price Point, scratches more easily 

These are our top three... can you tell the difference?  One is laminate and 2 are engineered.

Here is a depiction of what the floors would look like with our cabinets.  I wanted a medium brown tone with some variation in grain, and no red... I know what my favorite is! 
So what do you think?  Laminate or engineered?  What one do you like?


Patty Hibble said...

We installed Pergo laminate in our kitchen about 15 years ago. One selling point was that it was pretty indestructible. It has held up nicely. Even though it was top of the line back then, it doesn't look real.
Two years ago, we installed engineered wood flooring on our entire second floor. At the flooring store, their display had been installed for several years and looked amazingly well. Not the wear and tear you'd expect under such circumstances. After two years, ours still looks good. Minor scratches aren't noticeable, but could be touched up easily with a crayon or marker. The ONLY regret I have is that we got a beautiful dark mahogany color - which shows EVERY SINGLE dust particle, cat hair,and the like. As beautiful as it is, I would have chosen a different color that wouldn't make EVERY SINGLE housekeeping issue so obvious!
I hope you get good feedback from others to help you in your decision making. Good luck!

Laura@Elegant Nest said...

I have had both...in different homes. I always prefer the real wood option...laminate is just too hollow sounding and fake looking...even with the current/updated styles. As far as scratches...I prefer a slightly distressed look so wouldn't mind a touch up here and there. I also love a dark wood look...but fear the comments above...sweep every day...no thanks! Good Luck.

Elizabeth @ The Little Black Door said...

I can't tell the difference but I think I like the one on the right best. What a change that will be in your house!

Patty Hibble said...

One more thing....no matter which you choose, I have found that using Bona hardwood floor products work best! Nice sheen and no streaks.

Vel Criste said...

I will be biased on this Tiffany since I recently installed laminate in my kitchen, and looks exactly like the ones your choosing from. I really love it, super easy to maintain and clean. Good luck on your decision dear!

Shauna@Satori Design for Living said...

Laminate has come a long way. With busy boys, that may be your best bet. Save the stuff that scratches easier for when you're empty nesters!