Carpet versus hard flooring: the pros, challenges and best solutions for each room

How to get your foundations right.
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We all want a dream house that ticks all boxes – is timeless in style, complements our interior scheme or makes a wow impact, can take the motherload of footfall from toddler to teen, and won’t require ample time and elbow grease to maintain. And then there’s the budget. Flooring consumes a large portion of the interior budget and is the foundation for your interior colour palette – so there’s a natural pressure to make the right choices.

Now the good news: there are ample options to choose from, and the perfect flooring finish that will tick all your requirements is out there (we promise!). Here, we lay out the best flooring solutions for each room, keeping aesthetics, purpose and practical benefits front of mind.

Soft flooring: Carpet

Carpets offer a sense of comfort and warmth; a soft, plush cushioning surface you can sink your toes into. And, due to the extensive colours, textures, fibres and patterns, carpet can also significantly enhance your interior aesthetic.

From a practical perspective, carpet (particularly wool carpet) works as an insulator, retaining warmth in winter and is cooler in summer. It also helps reduces noise, cushions the ground as you walk, provides a safer, non-slip surface, and can improve indoor air quality by trapping allergens and dust. That said, carpets need regular vacuuming and cleaning.

Elegant living room with a close-up of a comfortable sofa, area rug, and luxurious modern furniture
(Credit: Hoda Bogdan)

Carpets have come a long way in recent years. Today, you can choose from a range of materials to suit your lifestyle requirements and budget including wool carpets, nylon, asthma- and pet-friendly products, with myriad low-maintenance and durable options and of course, luxurious finishes that elevate your interior. There’s also a diverse selection of styles, from plush to looped and textured or twisted, and in a plethora of colours to suit just about every interior style.

Natural wool has become a home favourite, thanks to its timelessness, durability, stain-resistance, insulating properties, luxe feel and the general trend towards choosing natural fibres.  But many nylon and synthetic options are high-tech and just as aesthetically appealing.  

Choices Flooring have a wide range of carpet styles, fabrics and colours available, including Wool carpet, Nylon carpet and Asthma-friendly carpet. Featured: Windsor Wool Clayfield Moonless Night, available at Choices Flooring.

When it comes to rooms, high-quality and durable carpets are versatile and can largely be used in any room, but more commonly appear in bedrooms and living rooms, as opposed to high-traffic hallways.  

Hard flooring: Laminate and Timber

Blonde laminate wood
(Credit: ImageFlow.)

You are literally spoilt for choice when it comes to hard surfaces. The two most popular choices are laminates and timber.

Today’s laminate ranges mimic the natural materials they are based on, with timber, stone, tiles and other hard surfaces all available. Laminate timber lookalikes can include planks, natural knots, patterns, textures and colours that make them look just like the real thing. Laminates come in a range of designs suitable for every lifestyle including asthma-friendly collections, family-friendly finishes, and even options that soften acoustics, enhance durability and make maintenance a breeze.

Laminate floors tend to be easier to maintain than solid timber floorboards, with water-resistant and non-porous finishes, anti-static properties and easy plank replacements. And they are less expensive than natural materials.

They are perfect for high foot-traffic hallways, kitchens and kids’ or entertainment rooms. Tile laminates are also a great budget-friendly alternative to natural stone, achieving the marble or stone (or timber) aesthetic, minus the cost.

Timber floors or hardwood floors are made from solid wood (or hybrid, with a thin hardwood veneer atop engineered wood planks), which really showcase the natural beauty.

mpty elegant dark room at night with copy space, AI Generated
(Credit: Yuliia Mazurkevych)

From an aesthetic perspective, timber floorboards are timeless, add warmth and a luxurious vibe, often becoming the interior showpiece themselves. But they are more expensive and can require maintenance.

Luxury vinyl flooring is another popular option that is low maintenance, easy to install, budget-friendly, quiet to walk on and super stylish.

The most important thing you can do is take your time before making a decision. Flooring is a big investment, so choosing carefully for your lifestyle needs, budget and aesthetic requirements is key to living happily ever after. If in doubt, speak to the experts.

Choices Flooring is the undisputed leader in Australia’s flooring realm, embracing a legacy that traces back to 1959. Pioneering the concept of helping you find your dream floor, Choices Flooring has an extensive range of flooring and window furnishing options, encompassing both timeless and contemporary carpets, enduring timber selections, as well as a refined array of rugs and stylish window furnishings. All curated to align with your distinct preferences.

Boasting a network of over 140 stores across Australia and New Zealand, Choices Flooring is dedicated to delivering premium floor coverings that stand the test of time, while also standing at the forefront of technological advancement with a RoomView visualiser tool to help you visualise your dream space at the click of a button. With showrooms that feature state-of-the-art flooring displays, Choices also offers free measurements and quotes to streamline your flooring journey.

Embark on a transformative flooring experience today by visiting your nearest Choices Flooring store, or at, and find the floor you’ve been searching for.

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