What real estate agents need to know about hardwood floors


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Solid hardwood floors are the gold standard in the housing market – not only for their warmth and rich appearance, but also for their durability.

Pre-war houses built before 1940 always have hardwood floors, usually oak, maple, fir and yellow pine, sometimes with borders or patterns such as herringbone and special custom installations. Often, a combination of different types of wood was used to create unusually beautiful floors.

Craftsmanship and raw materials were two essential elements required to support this type of flooring and customization. Another factor associated with hardwood floors is the repair and maintenance of wooden floors, and the cleaning required to keep them clean and in good condition.

Craftsmen who know how to make hardwood floors are no longer available. When the pre-war homes were built, excellence was a source of pride, and apprenticeship programs were still in use.

The labor was reasonable, and the products of the skilful hand of carpenters and fitters are still visible in old houses… Carved wooden capes, railings, cornices, doors, windows and wooden frames are both prized and highly regarded.

Railings and balustrades for stairs were a source of pride and were used in porches along with stained glass windows, transoms and partitions, plaster ceiling medallions and ceiling patterns. The artisans were willing to learn and invest time in their craft, and the architects, builders and homeowners had the patience to wait for production to begin.

Raw materials like lumber and exotic hardwoods were available for pre-war construction, especially for floors. Housekeepers, maids, or housewives had time to polish and wax the floors to maintain their original radiance, and spent more time at home to appreciate and enjoy their efforts.

After 1940, as life accelerated, work outside the home became important for women, sleek futuristic designs and styles became popular, craftsmanship ceased to be appreciated. Particular attention was paid to the conservation of trees and natural resources, and light housekeeping and housekeeping became more and more common.

Parquet floors – a new type of flooring – dominated the market in the 1960s. A sandwich of layers called “layers”, this type of flooring is made up of hardwood and plywood that are bonded together by heating and pressing.

Hardwood veneer is the most important top layer because it is visible. This veneer is 1/16 to 1/8 inch thick and has a plywood core underneath, each layer of which is perpendicular to the layer above to add strength.

Multi-layering increases tensile strength and stability. This also makes it less susceptible to expansion and contraction. The number of layers or layers indicates the strength and quality of the wood floor. Engineered wood parquet can consist of only three layers and up to 12, although the average is five.

The wood flooring industry believes that solid wood floors and engineered wood floors are interchangeable and there is very little difference between the two. Before installation, the layers (or layers) are visible from the side of each parquet floor board.

Solid wood floors are cut from trees and can be smooth sawn, quarter-cut, or chopped to give different effects. Different techniques can be combined to produce different effects on the floor. Since each tree is different and the method used to carve planks of wood may be different, the solid wood floor effect is the most natural and most desirable – difficult to reproduce on any industrial floor.

Engineered hardwood parquet is not attractive because of its price, since it can be as expensive as hardwood, but due to its ease of installation and the ability to resist moisture. Similar to laminate floors, engineered floors use the Click Lock system with grooved and grooved strips that are joined together without glue.

In rooms with low humidity, such as bathrooms or kitchens, engineered floors can be used. On the other hand, cellars that prone to flooding not suitable for this type of floor.

Parquet floors can be laid on top of concrete slabs, but the moisture content cannot exceed 4%. Moisture tests can be performed prior to installing concrete slabs.

Since no glue or glue is used for engineered floors, a foam or cork underlay allows the floor to float. Another reason hardwood floors are preferred is because they can be quickly installed on any sturdy sub-floor such as plywood, ceramic tiles, old hardwood or dry concrete.

Parquet floors are very durable and the number of layers is the best indicator of their durability. Thinner floors last 20 to 30 years, and thicker floors 40 to 80 years.

Parquet floors can be scratched or cracked like solid wood floors. However, unlike hardwood, not all engineered floors can be sanded and polished. Damaged floor areas can be replaced, but may look newer than the original surrounding floor as engineered floors fade in the sun. Thicker floors can be sanded up to five times, but it is prudent to be careful and expect sanding only once or twice.

Although the price of hardwood floors is comparable to hardwood, the ease of installation and affordability make this type of floor a great option for renovating tired, worn out or damaged floors in homes.

Beautiful hardwood floors will never go out of style, and the upkeep and maintenance costs are well worth the investment for some home buyers. Real estate agents who can discuss different options and installation methods for older homes and top braces will clearly have an edge when dealing with buyers.

Gerard Splendor is a Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker with Warburg Real Estate in New York… Contact him at LinkedIn

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