For remodelers, floor renovations can present valuable opportunities to highlight design prowess and knowledge, as sleek, stylish flooring sets the property’s tone. Fortunately, recent innovations in flooring materials have increased the possibilities for a luxurious yet affordable remodel. To maximize these project opportunities, it is essential to stay on top of the latest trends and techniques to offer new ideas and bring your clients’ visions to life.
The following five trends are a great place to start when mapping out any flooring project.
Prints Over Price
With new digital printing advancements consistently expanding flooring options, flooring looks that previously required premium materials or significant installation costs are now achievable with fewer labor hours and a smaller monetary investment. These design technologies eliminate boundaries between flooring materials and seamlessly produce customizable tiles and planks in whatever style, color or finish your clients desire. Take for example, owners who adore but cannot afford a true natural wood or marble floor. Instead, they can enjoy the same style and ambiance through nearly identical alternate materials.
As flooring technologies and products continue to evolve, The Home Depot remains committed to driving innovative new ideas that reduce stress for remodelers while delighting homeowners and renters. Our merchants work with leading manufacturers to develop durable and advanced laminate, vinyl and porcelain tile without compromising on aesthetics. This means amplifying realism. If your clients desire a natural look, it’s easier than ever to offer them rich designs ranging from knots and ripples in wood to wavy colors in marble.
Did you know that today’s floor printing machines even reduce the number of repeat designs on tiles and planks? Ensuring the same pattern does not appear in multiple spots within a given room produces a more natural feel, and adds realism that will make it harder for owners, renters or visitors to detect a difference in material sourcing.
Longer Planks, Shorter Install Times
Manufactured wood and stone are becoming more popular, and property owners are reacting with large-format tiling and planks. As you likely know, flooring materials have steadily increased in size during recent years – squares can measure as wide as 16 inches, planks have hit four feet in length, and rectangles are sold in sizes as large as 18x36. The advantage is two-fold, and homeowners benefit from a space that appears more open and inviting.
While larger flooring materials are bulkier and require more careful planning to install, the benefit for remodelers is that they require less time, allowing resources to be spent on other projects. To ensure a seamless, gap-free design, use a mortar specifically engineered for heavier tiles or planks. Custom Building Products’ Natural Stone and Large Tile mortar, for example, reduces lippage and produces a more level installation.
Like tile, laminate flooring has recently evolved to a more eye-catching form. Laminate planks now feature a thick, sturdy design and durable finish that deters scratching, offering a stability advantage for owners and quality assurance for remodelers.
The Home Depot specifically worked closely with Pergo to develop Outlast Plus, a next-level laminate capable of withstanding water for up to 24 hours, far exceeding the industry standard. This creates new opportunities to bring the look of wood flooring into bathrooms, kitchens and other water-centric rooms previously considered off limits to notoriously moisture-intolerant materials. Available exclusively at our stores, this product also includes an attached underlayment that reduces sound and makes installation faster, simpler and more affordable.
Another result of the flooring design evolution is the resurgence of vinyl, elevating a material previously considered outdated (think sheet tiles from the 1980s) into one that is trendy and coveted. Just like laminates, vinyl is 100 percent waterproof and versatile, making it an ideal choice for updated flooring. Your clients can select from a deep portfolio of colors and designs to fit the flow of any room. The Home Depot’s exclusive LifeProof luxury vinyl planks, for instance, offer customizable options in 42 potential colors.
Renovation teams can also benefit from modern vinyl flooring’s easy to apply and maintain composition, with tiles and strips able to go directly over existing vinyl, tile or laminate surfaces without the need to remove the subfloor. Lifeproof vinyl planks use drop and lock end joints that fall perfectly into place and reduce installation cost and time. Featuring an innovative rigid PVC core that delivers strength while remaining lightweight, Lifeproof planks are an excellent choice to offer your clients a durable and attractive floor.
Flooring design trends are influenced as much by the location as the clients themselves. Sources ranging from direct conversations with clients and fellow pros to social media channels can keep you and your team on the cutting edge of emerging local design.
At The Home Depot, we have seen unique preferences for different styles of flooring across the country. In Texas and the Southwestern region, darker grey and brown flooring with a more distressed tone are preferred. While properties in more oceanic regions, such as the East and West coasts, not surprisingly go more for lighter grey, white and cream colors that feel cool and casual. Conversely, in colder areas, such as the Northeast, residents may feel drawn toward subtle accents ranging from beiges to tans.
When it comes down to selecting a floor material and design, depending on property dimensions and your clients’ tastes and plans for the property, the depth and extent of any flooring renovation will greatly vary. However, staying on top of the latest trends with an open mind for creativity can result in a floor that is brilliant, easy to install and a value driver for any home.