New Floors on a Budget - 10 Tips
Whether you've just moved in or simply want to give your well-loved home a little facelift, flooring is often the first place to start. Let's face it, though, decorating your home can be expensive. Installing a new floor, however, can change the feel of the whole room before you've even given the walls a lick of paint. That said, it's an unfortunate fact that flooring is amongst the most expensive investments in home decor.
Budgets are always a little tight in this climate but, by being a little savvy, you can have the floors you want without straining your bank. Here are some tips to help you...
Measure carefully and do your sums
Making sure you buy enough flooring will help you keep the cost down. Our handy guide to knowing how much flooring to buy is a great help for measuring. Don't forget to take into account wastage and remember, many types of hard flooring will be sold in full boxes only, so keep this in mind when calculating. Remember to look at the price and the square metre per box. Just because a box is cheaper in price, it may cover less floor space and so work out costlier on the whole project.
So you don't encounter any unpleasant surprises along the way, make sure you buy enough flooring. Pay attention to the suggestions in Tip 1 to avoid having to buy extra flooring at a later date. This will not only be frustrating but buying smaller quantities later will cost you more; not only will you lose out on bulk discounts, but you may also have to pay more delivery charges. What's more, if you run out halfway through a fitting, you could get charged twice by your installer.
Buy in Bulk
High street retailers are often more expensive, so shop around and look for retailers offering a bulk discount, like Flooring Megastore, will be a great help. Often it’s a case of the more you buy, the more you save, so take advantage of deals and refer to point one – do your sums!
Look at quality, not just price.
For real value for money, remember to look at the quality of the product, not just at the price. Check the specifics on your flooring, as a higher quality flooring may cost a little more than the basic product, but will likely last you much longer – saving money in the long run.
Make the most of free delivery options
Look out for savings when it comes to the delivery of your new flooring. You'll find our delivery costs often benefit from flash sales throughout the year.
Opt for Engineered Wood
Choosing engineered wood rather than its solid alternative can dramatically bring down the price without affecting the look if it’s a gleaming finish you’re after. Underneath that, you could opt for Laminate as this can be a much keener alternative to Engineered wood. If these are still out of your budget, vinyl can be the ideal choice, providing surprisingly realistic effects for much less of the cost.
If some of your floors are liveable for ‘right now’, then prioritise buying and laying your floor for those rooms which are more urgent. Although you will possibly miss out on some bulk discount, taking a room at a time will spread the cost out, for which your wallet will thank you.
Using underlay below your flooring is essential to help with durability, insulation and more. However, if you’re really watching the pennies then consider compromising on the thickness and quality in lower traffic areas of the home. Use the really good stuff on areas such as the stairs and hallway to offer more protection and lighter-weight underlay in rooms such as the bedroom.
Do it Yourself
If you’re pretty handy at DIY, fitting your flooring yourself is an obvious way to save some money. When it comes to laminate, many of the flooring options come with a Uniclic joining system, making them relatively easy to fit. See our guide to installing laminate flooring or advice on getting to grips with it. Vinyl floor tiles are definitely doable for the aspiring DIY-er; our handy guide offers some tips to get you started. Meanwhile, carpet can be a little trickier, but with the right tools, it’s achievable if you’re determined to keep the cost down.
Check your Tradesman
If you decide to hire a fitter, shop around to get a good price. Read up on sites such as NICF or Checkatrade to ensure your money not only goes far but is well spent.