Low maintenance flooring is a floor that does not require continuous attention or regular maintenance. Common flooring types are carpet, laminate, reclaimed wood, luxury vinyl tile or plank (LVT), and terrazzo. Each of these can be low-maintenance if they’re correctly maintained.
Carpet is the most common type of flooring in the U.S., but it can be challenging to clean with most homeowners’ tools. You need to rent a deep carpet cleaner or hire a professional to take care of things. However, the floor is healthy, so it’s good to get the carpets professionally cleaned. However, if you do that regularly, your carpets will stay clean and tidy for years.
At best, carpet cleaning is time-consuming; at worst, it can damage your carpet. If you choose to install carpet in high-traffic areas of your home (for example, in an entrance hallway with a door opening and closing multiple times daily), consider paying for a professional cleaning every couple of years.
The same advice can be given to homeowners who wash their floors with a dust mop. Dirt and grit could cause your carpet fibers to wear down prematurely, making it essential to have professionals clean them periodically.
You’ll also need to think about carpet replacement every few years as part of one of the more critical types of maintenance: regular upkeep, which involves inspecting your home for signs of trouble and taking care of them before they become expensive problems.
Regular upkeep is equally important with other types of flooring. Luxury vinyl tile and plank (LVT) is the easiest type of flooring to care for, as it can withstand moisture and stains without staining or warping. There’s also no need to seal your LVT floors because they resist dirt and grime so well on their own.
Reclaimed wood flooring, another popular choice for homeowners, also resists dirt and moisture. Unlike LVT, it’s recommended that you seal your reclaimed wood floor every year to prevent fading and maintain its luster.
Terrazzo is a type of flooring made from marble chips poured over a concrete or epoxy base. This stone-based material can last a lifetime if it’s sealed and properly maintained. If you want to go with the most low-maintenance option possible, though, there’s nothing better than LVT or terrazzo—so long as you keep up with regular upkeep.
When it comes to sports wooden flooring, you should always seal your floor before installation and then re-seal it once a year to maximize performance. It’s also recommended that you clean your floor after every use.
It’s best to purchase a sports wooden floor cleaner from the manufacturer, but you can also get away with using a standard wood cleaner for regular maintenance, so long as it isn’t oil-based. Don’t forget about re-sealing every year—a good time to do this is right before starting a new season.
In a nutshell, your best bet for low-maintenance flooring is LVT. If you think that’s too expensive, then opt for terrazzo or reclaimed wood to save money, but expect to sweep and vacuum daily, as well as re-seal every year.