What’s the best flooring to boost your home’s resale value? Whether you’re selling your place or are just thinking about replacing what’s under your feet with something shiny and new, you’ll want to carefully consider which type of flooring you pick.

Flooring matters, a lot. In fact, some experts believe it may be the single biggest factor when it comes to your return on investment. Flooring matters tremendously when selling a home. It immediately influences if the buyer will like the house as they walk into every room and hallway, kitchen, and even exterior patio.

Choosing the right floor, however, it’s always cut and dried. Here’s how to figure out which flooring is best for your home.

The ROI on Wood Floors

Wood floors are one of the best investments you can make. They’re durable, versatile, and most buyers love them. According to real estate experts, the average ROI for installing hardwood floors is about 70% to 80%, and wood floors can boost the sales price of your home as much as 2.5%.

The downside? It’s the cost. While there is a wide range of options, experts estimate that popular woods (such as oak or walnut) cost around $5-$10 per square foot, plus an additional $4-$8 per square foot for installation.

How About Tile, Stone, or Marble?

Wood may be king, but it’s not always the best option for your home. For example, in tropical climates like Florida, most homes avoid wood flooring, since it’s known to warp and grown mold in the warm, humid air. Instead, some homeowners stick to tile, stone, and marble floors, and the ROI varies for each.

Ceramic Tile

Since most of the cost of ceramic tile is spent on labor, its ROI is largely determined by who installs it. Turns out you can earn a pretty penny by installing ceramic tile yourself. If you can do it and get results that look professional, the return on investment will exceed 100%. Replace sheet vinyl with affordable DIY ceramic tile, and ROI might be 200%.

Porcelain Tile

Buyers who have done their research are particularly attracted to porcelain tile. Denser and more durable tile than ceramic, porcelain is premium flooring that holds its good looks for decades. As such, it catches the attention of savvy buyers looking for value.

However, its high price tag will lower your ROI. Not only is porcelain tile more expensive, but you’ll also have to pay for professional installation. Common remodeling projects that use porcelain, like an upscale bathroom remodeling, bring an average ROI of 55%.

Stone Tile

low-end stones like slate may cost less to install, but this rugged look can turn buyers off and lower your ROI. Premium stones like granite can cost as much as $35 per square foot to install, but buyers may be willing to pay more for the quality.

Marble Tile

Despite its good looks, marble’s ROI is low, clocking in below 50%. So what gives/ Marble offer unsurpassed sophistication, but its reputation for needing maintenance and for staining puts off a portion of potential buyers.

The Resale Value of Carpet

Carpet just doesn’t cut it for many buyers. Most buyers expect to see hardwood floors, at least in the main areas. Carpet, unless brand-new, can raise questions about its cleanliness and durability, and these days just feels dated.

In some cases, however, it may be a worthwhile investment, Since installing carpet is relatively cheap, it can be a good option for sellers looking to spend little to spruce up their home.

Some have called it the “paint of flooring,” because carpet freshens the appearance of a home at little cost. Its value is making the home more palatable to potential buyers.

How Do I Decide?

When determining if wood or another expensive flooring option is worth it, take a look at the current value of your home and the conventions of the area where you live.

Ask your Real Estate Agent to pull comps in your area to guide you as to what type of flooring was in the homes that sold.

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