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Carpet vs laminate: pros and cons

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When it comes to making the choice about carpet vs laminate, finding the right solution for your home depends on your specific needs and requirements. Carpet has long been a traditional choice for living rooms and bedrooms, but with laminate available in a growing range of finishes and styles, it’s becoming increasingly popular.

Your choice may vary from room to room and will be dictated by your lifestyle, family size, pets, design scheme and day to day needs. Do you want a hard-wearing, low maintenance option or is comfort and style your most important criteria? We take you through the pros and cons, with lots of expert advice to help you make your decision. And remember, whatever type of floor you decide on, all of our floors are covered by a wear guarantee so you can rest assured.

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Carpet vs laminate: everything you need to know


Durability: An average grade carpet will last on average five years, a luxury design up to 15. Laminate will probably need to be replaced within 10 to 15 years, or less for cheaper styles.

Maintenance: Laminate is durable and easy to clean; carpet is prone to stains and will need higher maintenance in high traffic areas.

Installation: Carpet is suitable for almost any floor but looks best when professional laid; laminate is quick and easy to lay and suitable for use on most floor surfaces.

Style: Carpet is warm and comfortable underfoot and an ideal way to create a luxurious feel in a living room or bedroom. Laminate, in a wide range of effects including tiles, hardwood and even marble, can be used to make an impact in any room.

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Is carpet or laminate cheaper?


When it comes to the question is carpet cheaper than laminate, the answer depends on a number of factors, including size of the room and quality of materials. Both options are generally cheaper than real hardwood, stone or tiled flooring and represent very good value for money in a wide range of choices.

In general, a luxury high-pile carpet will cost more per square metre than laminate flooring. There are of course great value options available for carpets and it will be much cheaper to fit out a small room than a larger space.

Fitting charges should also be factored in, though DIY enthusiasts may like to have a go at installing easy-lay laminate that snaps into place.

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Carpet vs laminate: a room-by-room guide


Living rooms: Traditional and cosy or bright and modern? Carpet is the traditional choice for formal or cosy living rooms; use laminate to inject a contemporary look, with parquet, marble or wood effect designs.

Bedrooms: You can’t beat the feel of plush pile on bare feet when you step out of bed – or give your bedroom a modern twist with laminate and add a rug for comfort.

Kitchens: Carpet won’t work in high-traffic areas prone to spills and moisture, but it will cosy up a sectioned-off chill-out area for reading or watching TV. Laminate is a hard-wearing option and a great way to create a variety of effects, from traditional tiling to contemporary stone.

Hallway: Easy-clean laminate is a practical option and you can match it to any design scheme to create a great first impression. Carpet is soft and welcoming but add easy-clean rugs at the front doorway so everyone can wipe their feet.

Dining rooms: Carpet can be tricky when it comes to spills and stains, so choosing a laminate is a lower maintenance option.

As a good rule of thumb, choose laminate for practicality and affordability, carpet for comfort and luxury.