skip to Main Content

What’s More Cost-Effective: Carpet or Hard Surface Flooring?

Carpet Or Hard Surface Flooring

If you are considering replacing the flooring in your home or apartment, you are doubtless trying to determine what options will bring you the most value per dollar spent.  Carpet and hard surface flooring both have unique advantages and disadvantages, making it difficult to determine which option between the two would be the best value. Here are a few more things for you to consider when making your decision.

Initial Cost

At the outset, some hard surface flooring such as hardwood and tile can be more expensive to install than carpet.  Of course, there is some overlap between the two—for example, expensive carpet will cost more than cheap hard surface flooring—but on average you’ll pay more for the latter than the former.

However, as you probably know, there is much more to the cost of a floor than the initial sum you spend to have it put in.  For example, if you spend half as much on carpeting but are required to replace it three times as often as hard surface flooring, you will—in the long run—spend more on installation costs by taking the carpet route.  This brings us to our next consideration.


You need to assess the wear and tear your flooring will endure, and the likely outcome of this anticipated wear on the floor.  Overall, hard surface floors tend to be more durable than carpet.  It takes a piece of tile much longer to wear out than a piece of carpet.  On the other hand, if you don’t anticipate a tremendous amount of wear on the floor, this difference in durability will not matter very much.

Another item related to durability is how the flooring will react to the normal activities of everyday life.  For example, a piece of furniture being dragged across wood flooring could leave a scratch or mar, whereas the same piece being dragged across the carpeting may not have much effect.

Depending on the type of use you anticipate your flooring will see, and depending on how heavily trafficked the area will be, you may want to choose one option over the other.  Each option has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it helps to know how you anticipate using the floor.

Ease of Maintenance

One of the primary attractions of hard surface flooring is how easy it is to clean.  If you have children or a pet, you already know how easy it is for them to track mud in and leave it all over the carpet.  In a situation like this, you will really appreciate hard surface flooring because you can simply wipe the mud up and the flooring is as good as new.

Carpeting, on the other hand, is more likely to require intensive shampooing and scrubbing to remove ground in dirt and mud.  You may even find yourself renting a steam cleaner or other similar apparatus.  This cost should be considered when choosing the type of floor you will have.

The Winner: Hard Surface Flooring

With a higher initial cost, hard surface flooring would seem to be more costly. However, depending on the type of wear you anticipate your floor enduring, and depending on how frequently and heavily you anticipate cleaning it, it may be the better choice in the long run.  As such, you should consider your choice in light of your unique situation.

Back To Top