Harwood floor vs. carpet on h/w - Pros/cons

9 Replies

Hello all,

My duplex has h/w floor under cheap and stained carpet. I'm thinking of refinishing the h/w floor and maybe not putting carpet anymore...or skip refinishing and put better quality carpet to lower expenses? Still undecided, but I personally like hardwood floor.

What are the pros and cons in terms of cost and maintenance for rental unit?

Thanks all again for your feedback.


Hardwood floors are great, however tenants aren't going to treat it the same way a homeowner will.  Just look at how the carpets were treated.  I would take out the carpets and put down a laminate or the Allure vinyl that sells at Homedepot.  

@Lou Lee ,

Remove the carpet, and put wood looking ceramic tile down.   It's super durable, cheap and looks great!!!  IMO it offers the lowest maintenance available!   

Remember to think long term-- how easy can someone destroy this? 

+1 to the laminate idea. Cheap, looks great, durable

Remove the carpet and leave the hardwood as is. After they destroy the hardwood put down laminate.

@Lou Lee What would be the long term plan if you cover them up? Refinish them right before you sell?

Any adhesive backed flooring is going to be very hard to get off the wood later. Just keep that in mind if you look at tile or laminate. Tenants probably won't treat the HW that well but if it's thick you can always sand and reseal between tenants. Cheapest thing that will look good is probably new carpet though.

@Lou Lee

This spring I was faced with the same decision as you.    I was able to refinish my hardwood floors for around $3 per sf ft.  Carpet will be around $2 per sf depending on what you pick out and will only last 2-5 years.  Every 3-5 years I can rebuff (light sanding and clear coat) the hardwood floors for around $1.50 to $2 per sf.  Lifecycle cost its cheaper refinish and maintain hardwood floors vs carpet.   I would then move to a no pet policy.  

I like Jim's thought process; yes, I'm biased toward HWF. That being said, perhaps you could share the type of tenant, location, and quality of the unit you are seeking to produce/serve. If a more mature affluent tenant is your target, then I think you know the answer.

I love dogs, but they are floor killers.

Vinyl plank flooring for wood look and durability. 

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