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4 Flooring Trends for 2018

1. Cool Colors

As you browse the market for flooring materials, keep cool tones in mind. Flooring in shades of blue, green, and grey harmonizes nicely with most interiors and lends a tranquil ambiance to the space. These colors are also adaptable to multiple design schemes, from rustic to industrial. 

2. Hardwood Alternatives

Although genuine hardwood never goes out of style, there are plenty of other solutions that offer the same look and feel. Both vinyl flooring and porcelain tiles may be fashioned in planks that resemble the appearance of hardwood. These alternatives also carry the benefits of being moisture resistant and easy to install. 

3. Mats & Area Rugs

Even as full carpeting falls in and out of favor, mats and area rugs are here to stay. They provide a quick and easy way to add softness and color to your hardwood, tile, vinyl, or other solid flooring surfaces. Mats and rugs also assist in tying the decor together. 

4. Rough Textures & Fun Patterns

Rough textures are more popular than ever this season in home flooring. Distressed, wire-brushed, and hand-scraped styles of flooring are more interesting than smooth options, yet just as versatile. Patterns such as chevron, herringbone, and diagonals, are also widely sought after.

When you’re ready to update your home with all-new flooring, put your trust in the materials and labor from Best Buy Carpet and Flooring.

Toby Courville
Styles & Types of Carpet

The two most common carpet types are cut pile and loop pile. There are various style options within each respective construction type:

Cut Pile:

This carpet gets its durability through the fiber used, the density of the tufts, and the twist of the yarn. There are four popular styles to choose from: textured plush, Saxony, frieze, and cable.

•         Plush: This has a smooth and even finish, providing a more formal look.

•         Textured: This style uses low density fibers of uneven heights. The resulting look hides dirt with an informal look, but it is not suited for high traffic areas.

•         Saxony: This has a smooth and even finish, but the fibers are longer than a textured plush, and the fibers have a twist. Though this is the most popular style of carpet on the market, it has a tendency to show footprints and other marks more than other carpets.

•         Frieze: This carpet style features long fibers with more twists, so the resulting texture is informal. It hides foot prints and other marks easier than other carpets, but is generally not suited for high traffic areas. If the piles are longer, it is called “shag.”

•         Cable: This style of carpet is made with thicker and longer fibers to provide a more “cozy” feel to the carpet when walked on.

Loop Pile:

Loop pile carpets do not cut the yarn tips, making the loops visible. They are durable in construction, and are considered an “all-purpose” carpet.  There are various styles to choose from including: level loop, patterned multi-level loop, and cut and loop.

•         Level Loop or Berber: This carpet style features packed short looped fibers. This provides a durable surface for high trafficked areas with an informal appearance. Some color flecks in the fiber may make it easier to hide dirt, but the height of the fibers may make the seams more visible.

•         Patterned Multi-Level Loop: This carpet style features loops of varying heights to create a texture and or pattern.

•         Cut and Loop: This carpet style is a mixture between cut pile and loop pile fibers. The variant makes for a textured appearance that is ideal for highly trafficked areas. As an added bonus, this type of carpet also hides dirt and stains.

How to Determine Carpet Quality

Carpet quality is determined by a variety of factors including: the weight, fiber type, fiber construction, and density. There are some manufacturers that refer to carpet by grade, but there is no universal grading system in place for carpet. The “grades” assigned to carpet by the manufacturer are generally used as a marketing tool. Though traffic ratings are important, one company’s “high traffic” rating may be better than another.

Weight

The weight of a carpet is important as it shows how many fibers are present. The more fibers, the heavier the carpet; the heavier the carpet, the better. The face weight of the carpet is usually provided when selecting the right carpet for a home or business.

Fiber Types

The durability, look and feel, and price of carpet are partially determined by the fiber used to make it. The most common fiber types are: nylon, olefin, polyester, acrylic, wool, and blends.

•         Nylon: This is the most popular fiber type used for carpeting. There are two different kinds of nylon used to make carpeting: nylon 6, and nylon 6,6. Nylon is present in roughly 60% of all carpets sold in the United States. During manufacturing, dye is added to produce a variety of colors. Nylon is a highly durable fiber, resistant to wear and tear. It is generally not a stain repelling fiber, though treatments are available to help protect it against staining. It is a conductor of static electricity, and when left in direct sunlight for long periods of time, will fade.

•         Olefin: This fiber is not as resilient as nylon, but it is less likely to fade. It is a strong fiber that is resistant to wear and tear. This is an ideal fiber for any outdoor carpeting use because it is resistant to mold and mildew. This is not a comfortable carpet to walk on with bare feet. The seams of the carpet fibers may be more visible than with other fibers.

•         Polyester: Polyester is increasing in popularity because it is a more cost effective option than other fibers. It is not suitable for highly trafficked areas, because it is less resilient than nylon fiber and is more likely to show damage and fade. If used with a thick cut-pile construction, it has a soft feel.

•         Acrylic: Acrylic is not a widely used fiber, but it provides the look and feel of wool based carpets, without the expense. It is not a major conductor of static electricity, and is resistant to mold and mildew.

•         Wool: Wool is the most expensive fiber in the carpet market today, because it is the only natural fiber used in carpet production. It feels good against bare feet and is highly durable. It is stain and dirt resistant, but will fade easily in direct sunlight.

•         Blends: Blends of these fibers are used to improve the overall quality of carpet in terms of look and feel, and durability. The most commonly used blends are wool and nylon, and olefin and nylon.

Fiber Construction

The durability of a carpet relies heavily on the fiber construction.

•         Bulked Continuous Filament: Otherwise known as BCF, Bulked Continuous Filament is yarn made from one strand of fiber. Texture is added to the yarn to add to the bulk of the carpet which helps to make the twist more permanent, increasing durability and the life of the final carpet. All Build Direct carpets are made with this construction.

•         Staple: Staple construction is fibers made into short pieces of yarn, which inevitably causes the carpet to shed, and the fibers must be removed by vacuuming.

•         Twist: Carpet fibers are twisted around additional fiber to strengthen the final carpet. It makes it more resistant to wear and matting, and texture changes.

•         Heat Setting: Heat setting “locks in” the twist, to keep it from unraveling to strengthen the final carpet.

•         Tufting: The finishing step to produce carpet, the fibers are pushed through needles and tufted to the backing. This is the step that determines the density because of the amount of yarn and how close the tufts are.

Density

Density is important to the life of a carpet because it shows how many fibers are used in the pile and how close the fibers are tufted together. The rule of thumb is: the denser the carpet is, the better quality it is. Test the density by running fingers through the carpet to determine if it possible to feel the backing. If it is hard to feel the backing, the carpet is dense.

How to Choose  Carpet Colors and Patterns

Colors and patterns are available in all kinds of carpet, regardless of construction, fibers, and type. There are enough colors and patterns available to suit any decor. Light colors make a room seem larger than it is, but they will show dirt and stains easily. Medium colors will hide dirt and stains a bit, so they are ideal for areas near the entrances of a building. Multiple colors may make a room look dated if the colors are not carefully chosen because they are not as common. They will also hide dirt and debris. Patterns are a great choice for children’s rooms because they come in a range from geometrical to floral.

 

 

 

 

Carpet Myths

Carpet is one of the most beloved floor coverings in existence, but like any other popular product, it has also at times been the subject of inaccurate information. Below are five of the most common carpet myths, along with the facts to help clear up any misconceptions. 

Myth #1: Carpet is too difficult to maintain.

Fact: There are simple steps you can take to extend the longevity of your carpet. One of the most important things you can do is to vacuum high-traffic areas on a frequent basis. This will keep soil and other dirt particles from sinking and settling down below the surface the pile of the carpet. In addition, it is highly recommended that you get your carpet professionally cleaned every 12-18 months to preserve its appearance.

Myth #2: If you clean your carpet too often, you’ll ruin it.

Fact: Interestingly enough, the exact opposite is true – you can never clean it enough! Frequent cleaning will uphold its appearance and keep it looking new.

Myth #3: Carpet gives off harmful chemicals that can be hazardous to your health.

Fact: There’s a lot of talk about VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) in the flooring world right now, so it’s important to learn how to separate fact from fiction. Many people claim that the famous “new carpet smell” is actually just harmful chemicals such as formaldehyde being leaked into the air. This phenomenon is popularly known as “off-gassing,” and it has been the subject of countless ominous news headlines, some of which are embarrassingly inaccurate. Formaldehyde is not even used in the carpet manufacturing process at all today, and hasn’t been since 1978. Before then, a small amount of formaldehyde was used as a resin hardener, but even if you have pre-1978 carpet in your home, whatever might have been left of the chemical would have dissipated a long time ago. The truth is that carpet is one of the lowest emitters of VOCs in the household environment, ranking lower than wall paint in multiple tests. The EPA has conducted extensive research regarding this topic, but no evidence has been found that links carpet VOC emissions to adverse health effects.

Myth #4: Carpet aggravates your allergies.

Fact: Multiple EPA studies have thoroughly debunked this myth. If you suffer from airborne allergies, carpet can actually be one of your biggest allies. Research shows that carpet does an excellent job of trapping and immobilizing allergens, keeping them out of the air and out of your lungs. Now when you vacuum or sweep, those allergens can be stirred up, but their effects can be largely curtailed through the use of a HEPA air filter in your vacuum cleaner.

Myth #5: The thicker the carpet, the better.

Fact: Without a doubt, a thicker carpet will provide a softer, more cushiony feel underfoot, but that doesn’t translate into better durability. If you want a high-quality carpet that lasts a long time, you should focus on density, which is the amount of yarn per square inch. The more dense the carpet, the more resilient it will be regardless of its thickness.

With so much conflicting information out there, it can be difficult to separate fact from fiction when it comes to carpet. At Best Buy Flooring, our flooring professionals have decades of experience in helping homeowners choose the right carpet for their building or remodeling projects. We pride ourselves on giving our clients accurate and thorough information regarding their carpeting choices, and we have extensive experience with all aspects of carpet selection and installation. So whether your project is carpet installation for a home in Baton Rouge or an office building in New Orleans, we are here to help. Contact us today to see how our flooring experts can help make your next project a success!

Toby Courville
Best Floors For House Flipping

What is the Best Flooring for Flipping Houses?

Well, that depends on a lot of things. There are A LOT of questions to consider before choosing a flooring, but let me break it down a bit for you.

  • What neighborhood is the house in?: This may not seem important, but it is! If the average market price of your neighborhood is, say, $200,000, investing a ton of money into the flip and trying to sell your remodeled house for $300,000 might be near impossible.
  • What is your market-value goal?: Like before, find reasonable expectations for the market-value of your purchased flip. What do you hope to resell it for? That will help determine what flooring you want to invest in.
  • What is your budget?: The thing about flipping is the more you spend, the less ROI you might get. You want to establish a budget and look for flooring that falls within it. It might be worth it to splurge on flooring, though. More on that later!
  • What rooms do you plan on flipping?: Realtors say the two most important rooms for buyers are the kitchen and the bathrooms. Think about it, when you start a house tour where does it start and end? Usually in the kitchen. If you can’t afford to flip the whole house and want to focus on two places, those might be the best places to start.

Hardwood Floors for House Flipping

Does your flip already have hardwood? Is there hardwood hidden underneath the carpet? If so, you struck a gold mine! Everyone wants hardwood in their home. If you have it already, even better. Your best bet would be the sand and refinish the hardwood to make it beautiful again.

If you don’t have hardwood, is it worth it to invest in it? Maybe.

Whether or not you want to buy hardwood for your house flip depends on the answers above. The truth is, hardwood will always raise the value of your flip and will make buyers more keen to make an offer; however, hardwood flooring is expensive.

If your budget doesn’t allow for it, or if hardwood floors are uncommon in the area you are flipping, it may not be worth the investment.

Cost of Hardwood Flooring

For your convenience, I did some math for you. Hardwood flooring comes in a range of prices depending on the species of wood and thickness, so I lowballed the number a bit with $8.00 a square foot. Keep in mind, this does not include installation cost, but it will give you an idea of what fits into your budget.

Average Cost by Sqft

500 sqft

1000 sqft

2000 sqft

$8.00$4,000$8,000$16,000

Carpet for House Flipping

 

Carpet is a big no-no in the house flipping world. Adding carpet to a flipped house probably won’t increase your ROI. Truth is, not a lot of people want carpets in their houses anymore. Those buyers that are going to view your flip? Yeah, they’re just thinking about how much it will cost to rip-out your brand new carpet and replace it with something else. Pity.

However, replacing old carpet with new carpet is always better than leaving the old carpet in place. If you can’t afford to upgrade the flooring to something other than carpet, at least replace it and you’ll break even

An exception is bedrooms. Bedrooms are still a popular place for carpet flooring. If you do want to put carpet in a house flip, stick to the bedrooms.

Cost of Carpet

Average Cost by Sqft

500 sqft

1000 sqft

2000 sqft

$2.00$1,000$2,000$4,000

Engineered Wood Floors for House Flipping

If you have the budget for it, engineered wood is great for a house flip. It has a high-end hardwood look because it is real wood! Engineered wood is constructed in layers to offer more durability and moisture resistance. These floors won’t have potential buyers daydreaming about ripping up your floors.

It is often more expensive than say, laminate, so it might be best to choose this for higher-value houses to make sure you earn a good ROI.

Cost of Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered wood flooring also has a range of prices. You can find engineered wood flooring as low as $2.72 and as high as over $10.00. Of course, price and quality tend to go hand in hand. Here, I’ve averaged the price to $6.00 a sqft.

Average Cost by Sqft

500 sqft

1000 sqft

2000 sqft

$6.00$3,000$6,000$12,000

Laminate for House Flipping

Laminate is very popular among experienced house flippers. One reason being it gives houses an expensive look without the expensive investment. Laminate can also come in a variety of looks, so the choice is yours (though we would recommend more neutral colors if flipping).

Laminate is a great choice if you have a lower budget but still want a good ROI when you sell.

Cost of Laminate Flooring

Laminate is one of the most affordable types of flooring on the market. It’s great for getting you a high ROI. It looks beautiful, and it’s cheap flooring.

Average Cost by Sqft

500 sqft

1000 sqft

2000 sqft

$2.50$3,000$1,250$5,000

Luxury Vinyl Floors for House Flipping

 

Luxury vinyl flooring is the new flooring of choice for experienced flippers. While laminate is still popular for flipping, high-end vinyl flooring has more perks at close to the same price. You can buy vinyl flooring in planks, tiles, or rolls, so you can control the look of your flip easily. High-end vinyl flooring also comes in a variety of finishes including wood look-alikes and natural stone.

Additionally, you can buy WPC vinyl flooring, which is 100% waterproof. This makes it a great choice for a continual flooring from living room to the kitchen. It can even be used in the bathroom!

Best yet: vinyl offers a great ROI.

Cost of Luxury Vinyl Flooring

The best part of luxury vinyl flooring is that there are so many types. You can get luxury vinyl in tiles and planks of different sizes. Don’t forget luxury vinyl that has a waterproof core! Different options come with different prices, so take a look around to see what works for you.

Average Cost by Sqft

500 sqft

1000 sqft

2000 sqft

$3.00$1,500$3,000$6,000

Tile Floors for House Flipping

Tile has great versatility for flipping. You can use tile anywhere in the house because it is durable and waterproof. Not only that, some tile mimics the looks of planks, wood, or other stones. It also has a great price-point, with ceramic tile being slightly less expensive than porcelain.

Travertine is a popular look right now in the flipping world, and you can find that both as a porcelain and ceramic tile at a low price-point. This earns you a great ROI.

Cost of Tile Flooring

Pricing for tile flooring can be tricky because there are two main types: porcelain tile and ceramic tile. Porcelain tends to be the more expensive tile, but you can still find it for under $3.00 a sqft if you search.

Average Cost by Sqft

500 sqft

1000 sqft

2000 sqft

$3.50$1,750$3,500$7,000

 

 

 

Why Choose Granite Countertops

5 Reasons to Choose Granite for Your Countertops

Granite Countertops have exploded in popularity—and for good reason. Not only are they beautiful, but they also have a number of other advantages over the other leading options. Here are five reasons to choose granite for your countertops:

Durability

Granite is extremely tough and durable. If it is properly installed, granite will last your your lifetime. It is resistant to chipping, scratching and cracking. Your granite countertop will look like new for years! It is also resistant to heat, which is a great feature for convenient cooking practices. 

They Last

Over the course of 30 years, the average laminate countertop needs to be replaced three times. A wood countertop has to be replaced twice over the same period of time, as well as requiring refinishings multiple times in between replacements. How many times will you have to replace your granite? Zero. Granite also lasts twice as long as other popular stones materials like quartz or soapstone.

Value

Studies show that granite countertops can significantly increase the value of your home. Not only do they improve the look of the kitchen, often a deciding factor in new home purchases, but they are hold their value for decades. Often, it’s possible to recoup up to 100% of your investment upon the sale of your home.

Low Maintenance

A properly sealed granite countertop is easily the lowest maintenance material you can choose for your countertop. It will resist staining and bacteria build-up and can be easily cleaned using soap and water.

Natural Beauty

The most basic and desirable feature of granite is it’s stunning beauty. Natural appearance and subtle hues are the hallmark of a granite countertop. Arguably, there is no material that can match the amazing aesthetic qualities of granite.

 

Granite countertops are an excellent choice for any kitchen or bathroom. The key is to have them professionally installed by someone with considerable experience. The leading provider of granite countertop installation in Southeast Michigan is Cutting Edge Granite.  Contact Us today and learn more about how granite can improve your home!

 

 

Toby Courville
Hardwood Color Trends

1. Dark and cool tones

Yes, the trend towards darker colors keeps growing and growing. It’s been on the rise for the last decade or so.  We seem to find two types of customers – 1) ones that prioritize style over maintenance and they tend to go darker and darker (these customers tend to be households without kids (either “pre-kids” or kids that have gone to college) or wealthier households that have extra help to keep the floors extra clean) or 2) those that absolutely love dark floors but want to go a bit lighter so that the floors are easier to maintain.

 

Either way, one thing is consistent:  Cool tones are strongly preferred.  There is a strong move away from warmer tones (e.g. reds, red/brown blends or yellow undertones) and a preference towards browns that are more pure and cooler (i.e no red undertones).  Cool tones are preferred both the walls (especially grays) and floors, and these work hand in hand together.  I even see some customers blending in a touch of gray to the dark browns (both to lighten it a bit and to add coolness and depth to the color.

 

For those looking to go darker and darker, they are generally blending ebony/dark walnut (i.e. a 50/50 blend), ebony/jacobean or trying out the new true black.  True Black is the newest stain from Duraseal, and as the name implies, it’s truly the blackest stain you can use – it’s more opaque for a darker look and more modern feel as it hides most of the graining you find in oak.

 

The picture to the right is True Black.  It’s often a good solution if you find that you have a mixture of wood species in your home as it camouflages the differences more.  But, true black floors do show every bit of dust, so be aware of this.

 

Darker floors are a bit more challenging to clean and maintain.  For those looking to go dark, but a bit lighter (either due to preference or for easier maintenance), try dark walnut, antique brown, coffee brown or special walnut (or a blend of these).

 

2.  Gray, gray blends and white washes

Yes, gray, gray and more gray.  Gray flooring has been on the rise, and you can see it everywhere you go – in wood, tile that looks like wood, and gray vinyl planks that look like wood.  I think I started to notice the trend and demand for gray hardwood flooring around 2010 or 2011.  First, I really only saw this in pre-finished (or factory made wood), and it wasn’t until 2012 or so when I started to get lots of local customers ask us to refinish their existing floors and turn them gray.

Over the last 2 to 3 years, we’ve been seeing more variations on the grays where people will blend in some browns for a gray/beige (or griege) look.  White washes have also grown in popularity (but they are also harder and more expensive to achieve with real hardwood).

 

3.  Light, natural and muted

Yes, on the opposite extreme to dark, the 2nd most popular floor choice is light – i.e. going natural.  But the theme is a consistent one.  There’s a preference to drown out the yellows and go for cooler tones. 

 

Toby Courville
Carpet Myths

Carpet is one of the most beloved floor coverings in existence, but like any other popular product, it has also at times been the subject of inaccurate information. Below are five of the most common carpet myths, along with the facts to help clear up any misconceptions. 

Myth #1: Carpet is too difficult to maintain.

Fact: There are simple steps you can take to extend the longevity of your carpet. One of the most important things you can do is to vacuum high-traffic areas on a frequent basis. This will keep soil and other dirt particles from sinking and settling down below the surface the pile of the carpet. In addition, it is highly recommended that you get your carpet professionally cleaned every 12-18 months to preserve its appearance.

Myth #2: If you clean your carpet too often, you’ll ruin it.

Fact: Interestingly enough, the exact opposite is true – you can never clean it enough! Frequent cleaning will uphold its appearance and keep it looking new.

Myth #3: Carpet gives off harmful chemicals that can be hazardous to your health.

Fact: There’s a lot of talk about VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) in the flooring world right now, so it’s important to learn how to separate fact from fiction. Many people claim that the famous “new carpet smell” is actually just harmful chemicals such as formaldehyde being leaked into the air. This phenomenon is popularly known as “off-gassing,” and it has been the subject of countless ominous news headlines, some of which are embarrassingly inaccurate. Formaldehyde is not even used in the carpet manufacturing process at all today, and hasn’t been since 1978. Before then, a small amount of formaldehyde was used as a resin hardener, but even if you have pre-1978 carpet in your home, whatever might have been left of the chemical would have dissipated a long time ago. The truth is that carpet is one of the lowest emitters of VOCs in the household environment, ranking lower than wall paint in multiple tests. The EPA has conducted extensive research regarding this topic, but no evidence has been found that links carpet VOC emissions to adverse health effects.

Myth #4: Carpet aggravates your allergies.

Fact: Multiple EPA studies have thoroughly debunked this myth. If you suffer from airborne allergies, carpet can actually be one of your biggest allies. Research shows that carpet does an excellent job of trapping and immobilizing allergens, keeping them out of the air and out of your lungs. Now when you vacuum or sweep, those allergens can be stirred up, but their effects can be largely curtailed through the use of a HEPA air filter in your vacuum cleaner.

Myth #5: The thicker the carpet, the better.

Fact: Without a doubt, a thicker carpet will provide a softer, more cushiony feel underfoot, but that doesn’t translate into better durability. If you want a high-quality carpet that lasts a long time, you should focus on density, which is the amount of yarn per square inch. The more dense the carpet, the more resilient it will be regardless of its thickness.

With so much conflicting information out there, it can be difficult to separate fact from fiction when it comes to carpet. At Best Buy Flooring, our flooring professionals have decades of experience in helping homeowners choose the right carpet for their building or remodeling projects. We pride ourselves on giving our clients accurate and thorough information regarding their carpeting choices, and we have extensive experience with all aspects of carpet selection and installation. So whether your project is carpet installation for a home in Baton Rouge or an office building in New Orleans, we are here to help. Contact us today to see how our flooring experts can help make your next project a success!