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The pros and cons of hardwood versus laminate flooring for your home.

The pros and cons of hardwood versus laminate flooring for your home.

There’s no straight-forward answer to be had here. Laminate and hardwood are two very different products, so it really depends on your end needs and goals.

In general terms, laminate flooring consists of a fiberboard core, a digital pattern impression (photograph), and a scratch-resistant finish on the wear surface. Typically, laminate floors consist of individual planks that connect to each other, forming one monolithic surface that lies on top of the existing substrate.

A hardwood floor, on the other hand, is either a solid plank milled from timber or an engineered plank that consists of several plies of hardwood veneers. Solid flooring may only be installed above grade, where engineered flooring can be installed below, on or above grade.

Both types of flooring are available in a wide array of quality levels and price points. Hardwood flooring is a more costly selection initially; however, it will tend to add more value to a home over time than laminate flooring.

Both surfaces have their respective merits, depending upon your needs and price point. Just remember that laminate flooring is a simulation of hardwood flooring and not the real thing.