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Wood ceramic tile versus wood laminate flooring - opinions please

6 years ago

Hello All,

I have a small-ish (815 square foot) first-floor condo that was flooded during Hurricane Harvey. Prior to the flooding, it had wood laminate flooring throughout the living and dining areas, and in the master bedroom. After the flooding the laminate buckled and needed removing.

I am considering replacing the wood laminate with wood-look ceramic tile, but I'm having doubts.

I am not concerned with appearance - I think I have the eye to achieve a natural or "realistic" look with either type of product.

My concerns are:

1) Warmth or lack thereof. I tend to walk around in my bare feet, and even though Houston is temperate, we do occasionally have "winters" (we just had snow a few days ago). I'm not too knowledgeable about the underlayment or subfloor, but since there would only be a thin layer between the tile and the ground floor slab, I wonder if tile is going to be too cold for my tastes.

2) Price / perceived value. Ceramic tile would add a little over $5000 to my renovation costs. Laminate would add next to no cost (maybe $1000 at most). Although I'm renovating many other aspects of the condo at the same time, I'm not sure $5000 for tile floor is a worthwhile investment on a condo that will probably be valued at somewhere around $175-180,000 when I'm done with it. I've owned three years, and while I want to make reasonably nice upgrades, I'm not trying to add improvements that are outsized in relation to the neighborhood standard.

3) Going through this again in the event of another flood. This was the first time my place flooded, but I'm sure a lot of the perceived value of the tile is the impression that tile flooring won't have to be replaced in the event of another flood. (Or would ceramic tile need to be taken up in the event of a flood? I am clueless.) Then again, I am wondering whether I will even own this place when the next "big one" hits.

4) "Tackiness" factor. Probably because I grew up in an area of the country where no one has tile outside the kitchen and bath, I have something of a personal bias against having it in living areas, no matter how nice the appearance.

What are your thoughts? If I am completely off base, and you have wood look tile floors that are warm and that you think added value commensurate with price, please let me know. But any input is appreciated!

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