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Best Type of Flooring for a Beach House

As an established Vancouver flooring company, we have a diverse base of clients who live in various parts of the city. With certain living in coastal areas with beachfront homes, we commonly receive requests for our advice on which type of flooring is the best suited for their home.

If you’re wondering the same, you’ve come to the right place. Not all floors are created equal, and what may work well for a city home, may not be the best option for a beach house. For example, a home by the sea will often have to deal with sand and water, which can have a highly negative impact on the same wooden floor that might work wondrously in a house nestled in a town center or the countryside.

In summary, the ideal flooring for a beach house will provide the following features:

  • Water resistance
  • Durable construction
  • Easy to clean.

The following types of flooring have consistently demonstrated these characteristics, and thus tend to be a popular option for beachside houses:

  1. Ceramic Tile

Ceramic tile is both easy to clean and water resistant, and provides an almost endless variety of styles, designs and colors to suit every interior. However, one crucial consideration for ceramic tiles (and with most tiles in general) is the need to seal it adequately. This task is best left to the professionals, who will provide a service of the highest degree of thoroughness and efficiency.

The main advantages of ceramic tiles are as follows:

  • Requires minimal maintenance (glazed tiles);
  • Boosts the resale value of your beach house;
  • Keeps the temperature cool during summer;
  • Provides a wide range of options.
  1. Vinyl

Vinyl, and luxury vinyl in particular, is worth considering for beach houses because it offers a softer underfoot and offers a highly pleasant aesthetic. By providing a look similar to wood that avoids the high price associated with wooden flooring, it can be a great way to achieve a natural vibe while benefiting from the durability offered by vinyl in a beachside setting. Although there aren’t as many options for styles, patterns and colors compared to ceramic tiles, finding one that suits your beach home still shouldn’t be a problem.

Vinyl has a significant variety of specific advantages:

  • Possible to install it yourself (if you have time in your hands);
  • Easy to clean and maintain;
  • Water resistant;
  • Relatively affordable.

Can I Use Hardwood Flooring for a Beach House?

If you’re very taken with the idea of wooden flooring for your beach house, there are ways in which it can function successfully in this setting. While it isn’t the most practical choice, there are steps that can be taken that allow wooden floors to be incorporated in a beachside home with highly positive results.

There’s no denying the many advantages of hardwood as a material, as aside from its aesthetic value, these floors are also much easier to clean. You just need to vacuum or sweep the floors, and you’re all set.

However, there are a few crucial things to be remembered before settling for hardwood flooring. To start with, while a beach house floor won’t get as much traffic as a city home, the damage that it may have to deal with can be quite intense. Salt, sand and moisture can all cause a great deal of damage to wood.

To delay or prevent this damage, we highly recommend that you go with a polyurethane finish when using hardwood flooring near the ocean. Providing ample protection to the surface of the wood, this finish allows it to withstand a lot of abuse. It’s worth remembering, however, that the color of oil-modified urethane can turn amber over time when exposed to direct sunlight.

It’s also essential to consider the issue of humidity, especially in the summer. While engineered hardwood flooring may have a better chance of surviving humidity fluctuations, there are also certain woods that can better withstand these conditions. Douglas Fir, American Cherry, and other dimensionally stable species are all known for these advantageous properties.

It’s also wise to avoid wide planks, which have been found to be more vulnerable to moisture-related movement than planks thinner than 5 inches. Finally, don’t forget to provide proper care to your floors once they are installed. This will prolong both the quality of their external appearance and the health of their internal structures, allowing them to serve you successfully on a long-term basis.

About Bonita Gregg

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