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Living Room Flooring Guide

As Australia's flooring specialists, we know how important flooring is when you're looking to create a certain look and feel in your home. Our ultimate flooring guide tells you everything you need to know to help you decide which flooring is right for you.


Living Room Flooring Guide

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Living Room Flooring Guide

All you need to know about living room flooring

We call it a living room for good reason; itss the main room of our house where we read, eat, watch TV, play games, talk and sometimes nod off. It is a multi-purpose room where we do most of our living, formal or informal, alone or with others. So a living room has to bend to whatever our needs are at a particular time, but the main thing we look for in a living room is comfort.

We've created a quick and simple guide to provide you with the important pieces of information to bear in mind when thinking about your living room flooring; to help you make the right choices for the one feature that will pull your whole living room design together.

Types of living room floor

There's a wide range of flooring options out there which are all worthy of your living room space. Two of the most common are wood and carpet:

Wood floors

Living Room Wood Floors Design Ideas

Wood is the king of flooring: It’s solid; it’s high class; it’s versatile; it’s pretty and; most of all, it’s natural. It’s easy to keep clean as well, just a broom or a cloth will do, and that means it’s healthy too, less dust, less germs, good for allergies, good for pets. It’s durable and, you know, it’s stylish: maybe as cool as it gets.

So, for a living room, wooden flooring ticks all the boxes. A lot of what you need to know about different types of timber flooring is in the finish. Knowing your wood finish is really useful if you want to turn your existing untreated floor boards into flooring you can show off, or otherwise transform the whole look of your room.

Wood, or timber, flooring can be refinished multiple times to achieve different looks and to strengthen the grain. All wood needs to have a surface finish to protect it and there are many kinds to choose from:

  • Wax finishes give a low lustre, amber colour. The process of waxing is more than just aesthetic - wax is poured into the pores of the wood where it hardens to provide protection and strength.

  • Water-based finishes have a clear appearance and aren’t known for yellowing over time. This makes them great for a durable, lasting finish.

  • Moisture-cured finishes are the most resistant to water and damage. They dry in 2-3 hours and the result is a living room floor with a rich, amber colour.

  • Oil-based finishes have an orange colour to them, which can give an additional feeling of warmth to a room but can take away from the natural colour of the wood more. Still, as finished go, oils are very durable.

  • Acid-cured finishes range from clear to yellow in hue and while they are known for their strong smell while wet, they dry in 2-3 hours and provide a lot of durability.

Carpet flooring

A carpeted floor is the last word on comfort. If you are going to be spending any time sitting on your living room floor or walking in bare feet, this is the perfect option. But bear in mind, in a lot of cases, living rooms with heavy footfall might not be best suited to carpets as they are much less durable than wooden floorings.

Here are some of the different kinds of carpets that are popular for living rooms:

Living Room Carpet Flooring Design Ideas
  • Sisal carpet comes in a range of textures and patterns and is very durable.

  • Frieze carpet is a luxurious, informal pile, with fibres that can move in many directions. It is available in variations of thick, thin, short and long pile.

  • Twist pile results in a luxurious, smooth surface with a finish that is less likely that other piles to show wear and tear.

  • Plush pile carpet has a soft, velvety feel and is great for formal living rooms. Because it shows tracking, it is not always ideal for high traffic areas.

Have a look at the range of carpets on our site just to get a taste for the different options available and to help identify the right carpet for you.

Choosing your living room flooring

The toss-up between wood and carpet is a lot about your personal preference. But it is also a lot about how you use your room and how much you want to pay. Carpets vary a lot in value and are generally much cheaper than wooden flooring. But wood shouldn't be dismissed on cost alone - it's durability means that it will outlast carpet easily, you might have to shell out to replace a carpet a good few times before a wooden floor even starts to show a bit of age.

So think about what you want out of your room. If you err on the side of comfort then carpet is probably for you, but if you want a very social living space, which will see a lot of footfall, you are probably more suited to something a bit more hard wearing. The possibilities are very much down to your own tastes though. For instance, there's nothing stopping you from getting a wooden floor and decking it out with soft rugs to get the best of both worlds.

Of course you aren't just limited to wood and carpet in the living room. There are a whole range of modern alternatives to both including bamboo, concrete and laminate. The real choice is between hard and lasting or soft and less-durable. So when it comes to flooring, the choice is all down to the balance between comfort and style.

Whatever kind of flooring you choose for your living room, don’t forget to do some research and find out the best way to care for it. This will ensure years of value and enjoyment.
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All you need to know about living room flooring - Darren Palmer

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