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Bathroom flooring – where to begin? (Part 1)

Whether replacing or refurbishing a main family bathroom, en-suite or cloakroom, the cost is not insignificant. It can be one an expensive home improvement project and most homeowners spend a fair amount of time looking for inspiration online, in showrooms and in magazines and brochures before committing.

The project tends to focus on layout, style and design of sanitaryware and bathroom accessories. Choosing the bathroom floor, however, is one of the most important aspects of the overall design and yet this decision can often be left to the end.

There are many ways to cover a bathroom floor and it can be quite daunting with so many options available. The key things to remember are that a bathroom floor should be waterproof (it can get quite wet at times!) and it should be slip-resistant. If it’s a busy family bathroom then consider choosing a floor covering that is also hard wearing should as it will endure plenty of daily wear and tear. Of course, it goes without saying that the material chosen should be comfortable to bare feet, needs to be easy to keep clean and, finally, look good! Don’t forget that your bathroom will most certainly have an effect on the value of your property too so choosing an attractive and appealing floor is important.

The flooring you decide upon should either coordinate with or provide a contrast to the rest of your bathroom. To coordinate, go for materials in a similar finish to your sanitaryware and blend colours as closely as possible. For contrast choose a different finish in the same colour or a different colour in a similar finish. It’s a good idea to collect flooring samples so that you can see how different colours and materials will look in your actual bathroom – and don’t forget, that at different times of the day, lighting will obviously vary.

The current trend is for porcelain tiles or real stone. Good quality tiles laid by a skilled installer should last a long time. Tiles can be very heavy so think carefully about the load bearing of the subfloor. If weight is an issue, consider sealed wood planking which is also very popular.

If budget allows, think carefully about underfloor heating in the bathroom. Creating warmth under foot when you step out of the bath or shower is a real luxury. It is a great way to create more wall space and to achieve the current sought after minimalist look.

Bathrooms are a long-term investment so make sure you won’t tire of the finish or colour you finally decide upon. In Part 2 Bathroom-Compare explores the pros and cons of the various flooring options available.

18th Nov 2019