Flooring for Resale Value


The flooring in any property is extremely important as it’s one of the main finishes used. Typically this covers almost all of the interior so it’s one of the most important decisions any homeowner can make.

Recently we chatted with someone who is in the market for new flooring in their home. They told us that their contractor advised them that they should use hardwood flooring because it’s better than luxury vinyl tile (otherwise known as LVT) for resale value.

But how true is this statement? Is this the right call? 

In this article, we’re going to take you through our thought process on the topic and discuss flooring for resale value.

Sherwin Williams Forever Green paint color

What’s Your Goal?

When designing a client’s home, it’s always important to understand what their goals are for the home. In the scenario we mention above the contractor is concerned about resale value, but is that your true concern when it comes to flooring?

It’s really important to think about how long you envision yourselves being in the home for. Is this your 5-year house, 10-year house, or forever home?

If you only plan to be there for 5-10 years, then yes, absolutely make design decisions to maximize the resale value and squeeze every penny out as possible while still being functional. You will most likely get that money back, and as long as you’re strategic about the color selection and plank size, it should still be relevant by the time you need to sell.

It starts to get interesting if this is your 10+ year home, or forever home. Color trends run 10-15 years and the Midwest is at the end of the cycle. If you go to sell in 10-15 years time, it’s likely that the LVT will start to put a timestamp on your home. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, just something to be aware of. The value you’re receiving is by the reduced maintenance of the material over the time you live in the home.

Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT)

We work on projects all over the United States and see LVT everywhere, and in homes of all different price points too. We even put it in a $3M home in Dallas we designed! LVT has flooded the market.

After being an interior designer for two decades, I can assure you that what goes up must come down. LVT will eventually become undesirable, just like laminate flooring is less desirable today. That’s not a reason to not have it, but if you’re looking for a classic and timeless choice, hardwood is going to be it. 

Similarly to LVT, luxury vinyl plank (a.k.a LVP), you need to pay special attention to the construction and wear layer. When we have put this in client’s homes we have often used a commercial-grade LVT as the wear layer is better and is constructed to withstand more abuse.

Hardwood Flooring

As we briefly mentioned earlier, hardwood flooring is a classic and timeless choice that you can almost not go wrong with. At no point in history has hardwood gone “out of style” or not been a selling point with a property. Colors and plank size preferences have changed over time, but generally speaking, it has staying power.

The thing to keep in mind with hardwood flooring is that all wood species are not equal. They are different and therefore have various levels of durability. Denting and scratching will depend on not only how you treat the floor, but also the wood species and cut of wood you have.

You can also get pre-finished flooring which means you can walk on it immediately. The factory finish often has a better warranty, wear layer, and will stand up better than field-finished hardwood flooring. The upfront cost is usually a little more for this, but the length of time required before needing to refinish is often worth it.

Engineered Wood Flooring

There is a third option which the contractor and client didn’t mention earlier on. And that is engineered wood flooring. This is a fabulous secret! 

Engineered wood flooring is a high density wood product that’s factory made, factory finished, and highly durable. A high-quality engineered wood can be refinished in the future too. Often the finish has guarantees on it, but if it’s well cared for you can get lifetime use from the flooring. 


So which flooring is best for resale value?

Well, as we mentioned at the start of this article, it depends on what your goals are and how long you plan to keep the home for. This will influence the best choice for you, along with taking into account your family and lifestyle.

If you have kids and pets and don’t plan on staying too long in your home then LVT would be the perfect choice.

However if you’re in your forever home, or don’t see yourselves moving any time soon, then hardwood or engineered wood flooring should be considered to get the true authentic look and timelessness from the finish.

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