Top 15 Flooring Ideas, Plus Costs Installed & Pros and Cons in 2017

Installing new flooring is a big decision. Because the floor is often the largest uninterrupted space in a room, the look and feel of the flooring can set the tone all by itself: is this a warm room, or a cool one? A place to hang out and relax, a place to eat, or a place to work?

On top of this ability to dominate the mood of a room, the installation of new flooring is often a time-consuming and expensive project. Generally, people choose flooring with the intention of keeping it for many years. No one wants to hate something they’re going to look at for the next decade, so below, you’ll find a list of the best flooring ideas for 2017, along with a rough estimate of how much each type of floor would cost to install.

  1. Hardwood

Hardwood flooring is one of the hottest flooring options this year, even in places where you wouldn’t traditionally see wooden floors: for instance, wood flooring has become the most popular kitchen flooring choice. This is especially the case for open layouts, where consistent flooring between the kitchen and living area helps the space to flow seamlessly.

There are a wide variety of hardwood options – from traditional hardwoods like oak, noted for its timeless beauty; to the newly popular bamboo, a renewable resource that is twice as hard as traditional woods; to the oh-so-trendy reclaimed wood, as famous for its unique look as it is for its sustainability.

The most popular choices this year are darker in color, gray, or otherwise aged-looking, as more and more people go for a vintage or rustic-inspired look.

Pros: Wood is beautiful and naturally warm, and can be sanded and refinished when damage is an issue. Some wood flooring is extremely green-friendly – look for wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).

Cons: Wood does not respond to dampness or humidity well, and can warp, discolor, or shrink, although some finishes may have less problems with this.

Cost installed: $5.00 to $10.00 per square foot, depending on the type of wood.

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Wood Siding Options, Costs, and Pros and Cons – Wood Siding Cost Estimates

Wood siding has many different options. In this guide, we’ll focus on styles such as Bevel, Board-and-Batten, and Split Log. There is also a more traditional cedar shingles and shakes siding option explained in the following article.

via Real Wood Siding

The many styles and options of wood siding are what other, competing materials such as Vinyl, Fiber Cement, Engineered Wood and other synthetic materials routinely mimic. Wood though, has a natural beauty that is very hard to match, and yet, with that comes the need for ongoing maintenance.

Two decades ago, wood siding used to be the #1 option for residential siding in America, and historically it has ruled over all others. But, not anymore. According to the 2015 U.S. Census data, Stucco and Vinyl are at the top, while wood has declined to just 3% of all new-single family homes having such cladding. Wood still offers much versatility, decent insulation and installation that doesn’t necessarily require as much expertise as some other siding options.

Pricing Information – Part 1

The labor costs for installing wood siding, particularly bevel and board-and-batten planks, is comparatively low (compared to fiber cement siding). A handyman can do the job, as can a do-it-yourselfer. Like all home improvement projects, a professional contractor will handle installation more efficiently and provide warranties on their service.

Wood siding averages between $4.00 and $14.00 per sq. ft. installed. Split log would be on the upper portion of this range, board-and-batten on the lower end with bevel in the middle. Lots of factors impact the costs for wood siding which we’ll address below.

A typical two bedroom sized home will generally cost between $9,000 and $30,000 for wood siding installed by a professional contractor. That’s for all 3 materials included, which is why the range is so great. If we break down the prices by type of style, it helps understand project costs more acutely.


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Fiber Cement Siding Cost and Pros and Cons in 2017 – Exterior Home Improvements

Fiber Cement as a siding option continues to be a popular choice. A review of U.S. Census data for new single-family houses sold in America shows Fiber Cement garners nearly a quarter of all siding materials. Brick, Wood and Vinyl are on a downward trend while Fiber Cement continues to gain in popularity. Stucco is, perhaps surprisingly, the #1 siding option in America where its popularity in the Western portion of the U.S. is enormous, but so is Fiber Cement in that region. The two materials in 2015 combined for a whooping 92% of the overall market out west.

Fiber Cement is commonly referred to as James Hardie, which is the company that originally created this plank board. It’s also called Cement Board, as the materials are made of cement, wood pulp, clay and sand. Fiber Cement is relatively heavy, quite sturdy and will last up to 100 years, while its surface usually needs repainting every 20 to 40 years.

Pricing Information – Part 1


Due to its weight, Fiber Cement routinely requires two workers to install each piece. For this reason, along with the idea that waste adds great expense to the project, the material is not well suited for DIY installation. There are essentially four styles of Fiber Cement: lap siding is the most common, shake and shingle, vertical panels, and artisan lap, which equals architectural grade of lap siding.

Fiber Cement lap siding costs $5.00 to $9.00 per sq. ft. installed. The other styles usually exceed $10.00 per sq. ft. Sticking with lap siding, the overall project cost for installing cement board on a typical two bedroom American home is $15,000 to $25,000. As there are numerous factors that impact the price, we will help explain that, but first let’s break down the costs. Note: this is a ballpark estimate example based on the national average cost of materials and job tasks.


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