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Like most things in life, choosing flooring is a little more complicated than just picking a product by colour and/or price. Other factors like durability, moisture and heat factors, texture, maintenance longevity, among other things will greatly affect your decision. Flooring is a huge investment and can influence the entire feel of your home. Getting the right flooring for you is probably the most important decision, so we’ll look at the various differences between the most common types of flooring available.

Types of Hard Flooring:


This is latest innovation in flooring, as its name suggests it combines the best characteristics of vinyl and laminate. Coming in planks it makes for a rigid floating flooring that is 100% waterproof.


100% waterproof from the top side (still not perfect for bathrooms). Durable and quiet and soft underfoot.


Still not as scratch resistant as laminate. Heat sensitive product that cannot handle direct sunlight. Subfloor must level.

Engineered Timber

Engineered timber flooring is a timelessly natural floor cover. It is easier and more cost effective to install than solid wood floorboards.


The flooring is prefinished so there is no down time, you can walk on it the same day. Due to the design and construction, there is less shrinking and expanding due to moisture changes, making them structurally more stable. They also have a lot more coats of scratch resistant polyurethane applied then a solid timber floor.


Not many. Not as scratch or dint resistant as laminate.


This is where it all started in the late 70s but popularised in the 80s as its price and options fell. Made from layers of high density fiberboard with essentially a print of the wood on top. It has a slight wooden texture and most are now available with water proof surfaces.


Cost effective. It is perfect for the handy DIYer to install and very hard wearing. Laminate is improving with age with new technology, waterproof surfaces and scratch protection to name a few. Perfect for pets, children and investment properties.


A little noisy under foot. Quality comes with a price.


Vinyl has improved in leaps and bounds away from the old linoleum or cushioned roll vinyl. They now offer the most realistic and stunning timber, stone, concrete and tile looks. Vinyl is a practical waterproof alternative to a floating floor.


Almost impervious to moisture  and quiet underfoot. Very durable and with even greater style choices than before. Perfect for families.


Whilst it still can replicate wood very well it just isn’t as natural looking in some cases. Vinyl is hard glued to your subfloor and shows everything underneath. Floor preparation is usually required and can be costly if you want a mirror finish.


There is no one single best type of flooring, you can only get the best flooring for you. Knowing the key differences as outlined above should greatly help your decision making, but it might not necessarily be enough to make the best decision and get the right option. So the single best piece of advice might be to talk to the experts. Derry’s advice is free and we have been helping people get the best flooring on the Central Coast for years.