At home With La Maison Chic

The right flooring for your home – Part three — wood and hard floors

Hardwood floors

Hardwood floors are a classic choice for many homes, and they work with most kinds of décor. However they are sensitive to climate changes and may expand and contract throughout the year. They are also susceptible to water damage and need constant maintenance, however if you opt for an oiled floor, especially oiled oak floors, they can be resistant to water for up to a week. Remember that oak floors have been used throughout Europe for the past 500 years in castles and period homes and are still in the same houses nowadays. Finally, like all in interior design, some very light or dark woods can be very fashionable for a few years but become suddenly old fashioned.

Laminate floors

With the advent of the Internet the buying and selling of goods has been revolutionised; today most products can be purchased online and in many cases for less than in a bricks and mortar store. Laminate flooring is no different — it can be found on the Internet for amazingly low prices. The reason is simple — Internet based companies without a bricks and mortar store front operation do not have the enormous overhead costs of large sales buildings, their maintenance, the utilities to run them, and most importantly large numbers of sales people! One of the greatest aspects of shopping for anything online is that you can do so at your pace, on your time, and without ever leaving the comfort of your home or office.

There are two basic types of laminate flooring — the old laminate flooring, which requires glue, and new laminate, which does not. The main difference between these types of laminate flooring is the difficulty of installation. Installing the glue less forms of laminate flooring is rather easy and can be done by almost any home or business owner. However installing laminate flooring that requires glue can be more difficult. The installer must use clamps and other devices to hold the laminate panels or tiles together until the glue dries. This makes it much more difficult to install by the average home or business owner.

Cement resin

This comprises a cement polyester resin and an aggregate (crushed stone or sand ). It can be laid over a concrete or a timber base. It provides a hardwearing non-slip surface, which has a slight texture.


This is a composite material made up of cement and marble aggregate, it is mixed and poured in situ onto a concrete base. It is then waxed and polished. It has a mosaic look. It is very hard wearing, and if it is polished or wet it is very slippery. It is a suitable product to be used with underfloor heating.

Laurent Billiet [email protected]

Member of the Irish Association of Interior Designers



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