Basement flooring can make all the difference when you remodel your basement living space. Although you're pretty much free to choose any type of flooring materials you like for the upper stories of your house, the basement presents different challenges which must be met using appropriate materials. Since you are laying this flooring over a porous concrete floor, you need to have flooring that will withstand moisture without developing mold, mildew, and musty smells. There are still many delightful products on the market which are perfect for basement applications.
For starters, you need to consider whether you really need to add another floor covering over your existing concrete floor. Contrary to popular misconceptions, concrete floors don't have to be cold, damp, and unappealing. You can buy colorful concrete overlays which can be used to paint warm, interesting designs on your concrete floors. You can basically create any look you want to achieve by using an overlay, and the material will be resistant to moisture. Having an overlay installed will run you between $3 and $7 per square which is considerably less expensive than wood floors or carpeting. This material has the advantages of being durable and very easy to maintain.
Although carpeting is not recommended as flooring for basements, if you prefer the look and feel of carpeting, there are brands on the market that will resist the moisture often found in basements. However, you don't want to use any type of carpeting unless the moisture in your basement is under control. Excess moisture will rot all carpet fibers given time. Synthetic fibers will hold up better under basement conditions than jute-backed carpets will. Another plus is that most basements don't have a lot of exposure to sunlight which will fade synthetic carpets.
For obvious reasons, real hardwood flooring isn't a good choice for basements. Real wood works out better when conditions are dry and stable. There are a variety of faux-wood products available, however, which will suit your purpose much better. These look like the real thing, but they cost less to install and will require less upkeep.
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