Timber floors are a great choice in any home as they're very durable and attractive and can work with any decor. However, they can be a costly investment; note some commonly asked questions about timber floors so you can determine if they would work well in your space and are sure to get the right type of timber for the installation.
Can hardwood be installed over a home's current flooring?
In some cases, hardwood can "float" over a current floor. This is when the slats of the hardwood are attached to each other with a tongue and groove design and don't need to be glued to the flooring underneath them. If a particular room has concrete floors, tile, or other such surfaces, this might provide a level enough space for floating hardwood floors, which are often cheaper and easier to install than other options and can mean less waste from having to tear up the old flooring.
How often do hardwood floors need to be refinished or waxed?
Sanding down the surface of hardwood and then repainting it or adding a stain can make it look like new, but there is no one answer about how often this needs to be done. The everyday wear that your floors suffer as well as the type of hardwood you choose will determine how quickly it gets worn and needs maintenance.
If you have kids, pets, or will otherwise expose your floors to heavy traffic, invest in a durable hardwood that may be more expensive to install but which will stand up to this rugged wear. The same is true for waxing; everyday traffic, water spills, and other such damage will determine how often a new coat of wax, varnish, or other sealants may need to be applied.
Is a solid hardwood more durable than an engineered hardwood?
Engineered hardwood refers to a sub-layer of plywood or another type of cheaper material with a layer of solid wood added to the top. It might seem as if hardwood is more durable than any flooring with plywood or particle board, but in truth, that plywood or other material under the top layer can actually be stronger than solid wood. These engineered layers are made with wood and adhesives to create the plies of this material, and this can mean less absorption of humidity so less risk of shrinking and expanding over time. If you need something very durable for your home's flooring, engineered hardwood can actually be the better choice.