So you’re looking for good floors to replace your old ones and you’re wondering what to get. You’re also wondering how much money you’ll have to dig out of your pocket for this investment in your home.
Laminate flooring is frequented as a purchase by many homeowners, and we see this quite clearly in Metro Vancouver. It’s affordable and durable. You get the best of both worlds.
With a little more research, you’re bound to find the sweet spot with a product that fits your needs, is affordable and can match the area it will go in.
So in this blog post, we’re going to talk about costs and specifically, the cost of laminate flooring.
What is Laminate Flooring?Table of Contents [show]
First, let’s talk about laminate flooring very briefly. Laminate flooring is made up of 4 layers. We’ve detailed that in past blog posts on the Diverse Flooring blog. In a nutshell, laminate flooring is photographed images of wood grains adhered to a melamine layer and a fibreboard layer. The top layer is the wear layer.
Laminate is durable enough to be used in a variety areas. We tackled the idea of whether laminate flooring could be used in kitchens in a blog post.
We’ve even talked about how to clean your laminate floors. (In short, proceed with caution and adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendations)
Heck, we’ve even compared different types of flooring, including laminate in past blog posts. Remember our Vinyl Flooring vs Laminate Flooring comparison? Or maybe you read our Engineered Flooring vs Laminate Flooring comparison?
Needless to say, we know laminate pretty well. So we know what good laminate entails and what bad laminate entails, especially from a cost perspective.
What Does Laminate Flooring Cost?Laminate prices can range between $1.50 and up to just under $7.00 per square foot. But there are clear determinants to the cost of flooring. The number one of which is quality.
There’s one thing we notice when we see issues clients have with laminate they’ve purchased from other stores. It’s the quality of the laminate. They saw laminate on sale and pounced on that opportunity. Then, they find issues with it down the road.
What Constitutes ‘Bad’ Laminate Flooring? Cheap Laminate.We’re going to be as clear as possible for you. That term “you get what you pay for” goes hand-in-hand with the flooring industry.
When you see low laminate prices, that’s a rough translation for it being made with cheap materials. It may not always be the case but there are reasons why a manufacturer is able to bring costs down.
Remember Lumber Liquidators? They got into big trouble when their laminate products had traces of formaldehyde in them. Even their bamboo flooring products have had issues.
If you bake a cake with bad ingredients, it probably won’t turn out too well. Similarly, if you’re using cheap substitutes in producing your floors, it can have a detrimental impact on quality and potentially, your health.
Laminate from Big Box Retailers: What They Make You Pay For.We’ve seen some ugly stories of people coming to us having purchased flooring that was ‘on sale’ at a big box retailer. We won’t mention their names but these are big stores you probably encounter when you go to the mall.
If you’re in the research stage of buying new floors, you may have gone to a big box store. Sure, they’ve got low prices, but how good is the laminate? We talked about cheap flooring and inexpensively-made laminate.
If you’re having to replace these floors a few years down the road, are you really getting cost-effective flooring? Remember they cost the same to have professionally installed but they simply do not perform the same. Generally, most laminates look good when first installed but it’s about how they perform in the long term that you need to be concerned about.
There are other questions you need to consider when you go to a big box store that don’t have to do with the quality of the product:
- What kind of buying experience are you going to get?
- Are there experts around to answer your questions?
- Do these staff members have decades of experience
How to know if your Laminate is ‘Good’So what you’re probably looking for are the factors that exactly determine how good what you’re looking at is. Let’s lay these out for you (no pun intended). You need to know how good the quality is of your laminate options. This will determine the price you pay.
Consider the following factors:
- Who is the manufacturer/vendor of the laminate?
- Where do they manufacture their flooring products?
- Have they been in trouble before for issues with their products?
- What are other people saying about the vendor’s products?
- How long has the manufacturer/vendor been in business?
- Is the manufacturer/vendor a major brand name? (consider companies such as Uniclic, Balterio, Mannington, Armstrong, Mohawk and Kronotex- be careful with Kronotex not all Kronotex is created equal, see a flooring specialist)
Got any other questions about laminate? Leave a comment below and we’ll be happy to answer you.