A few years back I had a job working for a company that flipped houses.
Basically that means my boss would buy fixer-uppers, send his guys in to re-model the whole joint, and then turn around and sell it for a profit.
It was a job I really loved for a lot of reasons, but mainly because I learned one hell of a lot about construction and what exactly goes in to making an outdated home something livable and aesthetically pleasing once again.
On a daily basis, we would encounter all sorts of things that builders or homeowners had done to their homes that tended to reveal the ultimate downside to whatever the current stylistic trends had been during a given era.
And it never really failed to shock me when I came across that stuff.
Popcorn ceilings anyone? Puh-leeze.
How about some pea green bathroom tile? What? You don’t want to look sickly in the bathroom mirror every time you look in it?
And when picking out stoves and fridges, why not go with something in a creamed corn shade?
Still, the one thing that blew my mind over and over and over again was seeing how many people had chosen to cover up really classy hardwood floors with carpet.
Why would you do this?
Sure, I know, carpet might seem like a better option when there are going to be little kids in the house, but in my experience that hasn’t been the case at all. Lots of folks think that carpet offers a cushion for those inevitable childhood spills, yet I’m hear to tell you: I’ve been raising two rambunctious kids on hardwood since the day they were each born and they’re no worse off because of it. I mean, they do make a slightly more ominous thud when they hit the deck, but whatever.
A good tumble deserves a decent thud, no?
In my mind, hardwood floors are special. There is some real craftsmanship that goes into creating them. and with minimum effort, their beauty and visible appeal lasts way way longer than any carpet ever will.
I used to peel back whole rooms covered in tattered, worn out, discolored carpet that smelled like fifty cats had been peeing on it for a decade (they had been) only to find hidden hardwood boards exiled underneath of the stuff. And I can tell you from doing that hundreds of times, the dust and filth that eventually settles in to call a carpet home would rise up in massive storm clouds as soon as I began to handle it.
That never happens with hardwood flooring. As long as you sweep and mop on a regular basis, you could eat your dinner off those boards and you’d be just fine.
Look, I know that it’s all down to a matter of personal preference. Hey, even I have some carpeted rooms in our home. And I like them and realize their worth. But there is just something about hardwood floors that charms and captivates me and I know I’m not alone.
I love the way the late afternoon sun piles through our front windows and gleams off of the old boards on our floor.
When the sun hits the carpet in the adjacent room, well, there’s nothing really; let’s just put it that way.
I’m embarking on a 5 post journey now, sponsored by The Home Depot, in which I want to explore a bunch of flooring ideas. The Depot was like my hangout when I decided to refinish the hardwood floors in our bedroom last year. They had just about everything I needed to do the job, and when I was done, man, I was so damn proud. That floor looks amazing, if I do say so myself!
So, I wanted to kick things off with my little ode to hardwood floors. Yes, there was a time, not too long ago, when people were all hot and bothered to cover them up in an effort to ‘modernize’ their house in whatever ‘stylish’ carpet was the rage back then. But those days are over. Hardwood is back. And quite frankly, it should stay that way, if you ask me.
Hey, if you happen to be on the fence about real wood floors vs. carpeting, please heed my call.
Hardwood floors are the original floor, the floors that old time craftsmen and builders painstakingly installed for generations to come to walk across and live upon. They’re beautiful and durable and they were made to last.
And, if you think about it, that’s something to consider when it’s your turn to make a house a home.