Hardwood Flooring and Whether to Self-Install
The old saying ‘one man’s meat another man’s poison’ is particularly applicable in the current downward economic trend, where the ‘meat’ of purchasing power is very much reduced across the country and the world. But it does mean that homeowners in the market for new hardwood flooring are in an excellent position to negotiate favorable raw material prices and/or installation costs.
With many hardwood floors sanding companies competing for business, it may well be that now is the right time for the consumer who is looking to re-floor a room or even an entire home within budget to employ a band of specialist wood flooring professionals at an agreeable price.
Choosing the best deal for you
If the above describes you and your current situation it is worthwhile obtaining a no-obligation quotation for flooring installation before deciding whether or not to go ahead and self-install. With the sluggish economic situation looking set to carry on into 2014 at least, the canny consumer can make this work to his advantage to source the best and most cost-effective flooring deal on the market. Even if self-installation is decided upon then floor-purchasing consumers are in a strong position to bargain the cost of raw materials.
If you are physically fit and looking for a challenging project then laying your own floor from scratch may be a welcome task. However be prepared to spend many hours on your hands and knees, in cramped and awkward positions. It is also desirable to have at least a little knowledge of joinery and DIY in general.
Installing a hardwood floor is not something you can risk botching. So it really needs to be laid correctly from the onset. Fixing a botched flooring job is likely to be expensive, so if in doubt call in the professionals to do the job from the start.
Before any aspect of floor paying is undertaken it is good advice to read everything you can find on the subject, watch DIY videos, ask questions of those in the know and, most importantly, go through the process stage by stage. Never be tempted to cut corners, no matter how tight time (or money) might be. Make sure you have all the tools required for the entire job. If tools are required which you do not have to hand then you can either purchase or hire then for the duration.
Set aside plenty of time for the work so there is no need to rush. Make sure health and safety is always adhered to and keep children and animals out of the room you are working in. Adequate ventilation is essential as are ear-defenders, protective clothing, gloves, goggles and knee pads.
Work systematically by laying the sub-floor first (if an under-floor is not already there) and then run the plank lengths across the joists to fix securely in place using nails or a tongue and groove fitting. Never be tempted to lay hardwood flooring directly onto a concrete base. A sub-floor is essential for the longevity and the aesthetics and comfort of your floor.
Hardwood flooring – always win-win
A recent survey carried out by the National Wood Floor Association (NWFA) suggests that in addition to looking beautiful and lasting for many years, a professionally installed hardwood flooring is a real selling point for any type of home.
Hardwoods popular as flooring include walnut, oak, mahogany and teak. If money really is no object one can opt for the most expensive wood there is: Zebra Wood. However, Zebra Wood, so named as the natural grain resembles zebra stripes, comes from an endangered tree species so it is probably a good idea to admire a Zebra Wood floor from afar whilst purchasing a good quality oak or mahogany for your floor. With its burnished beauty and timeless elegance, even simple oak will enhance any room for a long time to come, making hardwood flooring a worthwhile investment for homeowners everywhere.