As with any other major component of the new kitchen project, the kitchen flooring options need to be assessed and valued in terms of: budget, utility/serviceability and aesthetic appeal. Given the extreme demands put upon a kitchen floor, you want to get the best value (short and long term) for your dollar while maintaining the intended theme within the kitchen space. This may seem like a casual task–and one you have already faced several times, by this point, in your kitchen endeavor–but it does require its own special type of scrutiny and evaluation. Hopefully, the following discussion will assist you in sorting through some of the variables and the decision of kitchen flooring may not seem so difficult after all.
Let’s Take a Look at Your Budget
Inasmuch as the flooring tends to be the last major decision made in a kitchen overhaul or initial design, it sometimes has to be addressed with a smaller budget number than was initially intended. Lighting, appliances, hardware and cabinets often consume a larger portion of the general budget than expected and this can throw the budget out of balance a bit. If more dollars aren’t available to replenish the budget, then you’ll have to do the best that you can; and you can accomplish this without the worry of too much concession. If you followed the relatively common ‘third-third-third’ rule of kitchen budgeting (1/3 for cabinets, 1/3 for counters, 1/3 for flooring), then you’ll be just fine–even if you cheated along the way in one of the other areas. This ‘rule’, if kept intact during the process, will allow you to ‘shop’ most applicable flooring options; and as this budget is pared, the percentile is only minimally reduced. You’ll become more at ease when you realize just how many options that will be available to you, within each respective flooring finish category.
Once Again, Examine How You Live and How You Clean
No one ever wants to be a slave to maintaining their kitchen space, especially the flooring aspect of the kitchen. This situation can be largely avoided by a homeowner being honest about how they live and how they routinely maintain their living space; and, in particular, their kitchen. A wise homeowner will understand their own behaviors and choose flooring products that work in accordance with their lifestyle norm. If, for example, a choice is made that includes the statement, “I promise to sweep twice-a-day” when behavioral history shows that ‘twice-a-week’ is even a stretch, then it’s likely the wrong flooring option is being considered. Like anything in the home, all flooring products have their own, unique maintenance regimen–some are more forgiving than others. Choose a flooring material that most closely coincides with the way you live right now; but also be willing to put forth a little extra effort on the maintenance end if you absolutely have to have that glamor effect!
Subdue the Décor of the Floor
Of course you want your guests to notice your new floor; and you want them to envy that floor to the same level that they marvel at the balance of the kitchen, but let’s put things in a more candid perspective. Having the color, texture and correct decorating effect within the kitchen floor is essential – it has to work with the balance of the kitchen in all of these notable measures.
However, it’s not a good idea to make the floor the ‘showpiece’ of the kitchen. You want your guests to be taken-in by the glow of the cabinets, lure of the countertops, stateliness of the sink area as well as noticing every little detail you’ve used for embellishment, style and tasteful décor along the window and counters. Then you want them to stand back and admire how the entire ‘picture’ just works so fabulous together; and, perhaps, they will comment, “beautiful floor”, somewhere in their accolades. This will be the signature moment that suggests you did your homework! It’s usually best to keep a flooring surface as more of a ‘chameleon’ surface: one that is neutral enough to adapt to changing or evolving décor schemes. Flooring tends not to be replaced in a kitchen very often; and usually only when it’s absolutely necessary. This stands to reason as ‘flooring replacement’ constitutes a limited or non-existent access to the most traveled room in the home for the homeowner. Anything else in a kitchen can be removed and replaced with less interruption than the flooring. This is why your flooring decision has to be made with the caveat that it’s going to be around for a long time – so, choosing your flooring wisely is a wise choice to make!