Gone are the days when a carpet or big rug were used to cover the floor. Today, floor treatment is as important and part of the decor just like the walls.
When thinking of flooring, there are a couple of things to consider including the durability of the floor, how easy it is to clean, as well as how safe it is for children to run around.
The options in the market are many but wood flooring is proving to be the current trend.
Wooden floors have certain advantages over tiled and cement floors mainly due to their smoothness, brightness, stability, high resistance, insulation qualities and flexibility. They also give a natural beauty.
They are also warm compared to tiled floors which can be cold.
Amos Kibaru of Floor Décor Kenya says it is important to buy flooring from a reliable supplier or the factories to avoid phony items.
“There are a lot of products in the market that are imitations and many buyers are falling prey to such products, so it is good to test the product before a purchase is made,” he says.
Wood flooring has grown in popularity, because it may be easier to install and maintain than more traditional surfaces such as hardwood flooring. These floors are termite free and have a life span of 15 to 30 years.
One of the benefits of wood flooring is that they interlock therefore requiring less skill to install, unlike parquet flooring, which uses glue to stick it to the floor.
The floors also have a pad underneath the floor that act as sound proofs when walking and also as a moisture barrier. The floors do need some care including sanding and vanishing once in a while depending on the activity in the house and the type of wood used.
Wood appeal has lasted centuries and that is not about to change in fact wood is more popular now than ever.
Emmanuel Njoroge the director at Ken-vents Renovators says that the last 5 years has seen tremendous growth in the wood flooring sector as many move from the conventional tiles to wood blocks.
“Many people have a tendency to completely overlook wooden flooring, because it is initially more expensive than carpet; however, you reap many great benefits which outweigh the initial additional cost,” he says.
In one of its reports, FAO states that bamboo flooring is a quality product that can be used widely and has a large, global consumer market.
Bamboo Flooring has several benefits including its relatively easy upkeep, the strength of the wood and its overall adaptability.
They highly withstand moisture very well since they grow in mushy areas however bamboo flooring is not scratch proof. They come in four shades for one to choose from.
The cost of bamboo flooring is about Sh4000 per square meter.
This is flooring made from highly compressed wood materials that are mm thick. They wood materials range from Natural Oak, Mahogany and different Pine trees among others that come in 20 shades.
These floors highly withstand scratch as the top layer is coated with melamine to help protect against fading, stains and surface burns.
Laminate flooring has grown significantly in popularity, perhaps because it may be easier to install and maintain than more traditional surfaces such as hardwood flooring.
The cost of laminated flooring is Sh2,800 per square meter.
Most of the areas where wood flooring is put up is in dining areas, living rooms, corridors and bedrooms but not in wet areas like the kitchen.
Cleaning of these floors is only done with a damp mop to prevent water from sipping into the floor. However, Mr Kibaru says that one can unlock the planks of wood and dry them in the sun if flooding occurs in the house.
Another benefit of the interlocking system is that they can be installed over tiles without damaging these tiles and can be removed when one is moving out.