Today’s laminate floors – a ‘real’ wood alternative

(ARA) – You love the look of natural wood flooring but are afraid to install hardwood because you know the floor will take a beating from the kids, dogs and the heavy day-to-day traffic all too common in modern family life.

But you don’t have to sacrifice high style looks for boring sensibility when considering a new flooring option in your home – not if you choose laminate, that is.

Today’s best laminates combine the realistic grain and texture of wood with high durability and scratch and indentation resistance that “authentic” wood floors don’t provide, according to Jeff Katz, director – laminate for Tarkett Residential, a leading provider of innovative and sustainable flooring. And not only are today’s laminates available at a fraction of the cost of real wood floors, but they’re right in sync with the latest designs.

“There’s always a new decorating trend around the corner,” Katz says. “It’s imperative for manufacturers to respond to market demand, keeping up with the most up-to-date trends to ensure consumers are getting the latest in style and design, as well as technology.”

One such line is Tarkett’s Trends laminate, a durable new collection featuring eight of the hottest flooring designs, including Old World-inspired antique-stained planks and soft, hand scraped wood grains. Colors and styles in this line will continually rotate out with new introductions to give homeowners the newest, most popular looks in flooring, ultimately providing them with the high style of premium wood floors without the fuss.

“That’s the beauty of laminate products,” Katz says. “They’re the new normal – great-looking products that deliver great performance at a great value.

When shopping for laminate products consumers should look for flooring that is engineered with sturdy inner core board layers – preferably ones that deliver high impact resistance (at least an IC3 rating). This type of rating helps provide excellent indentation resistance, and when combined with highly rated top surface protection (AC3 or better) kids and pets can run and play freely on laminate floors without making a dent or marring up the surface’s good looks. As a result, laminate flooring is so durable versus real wood products that some laminates come with up to a full lifetime warranty.

What’s more, creating a laminate flooring transformation in your home is a relatively simple DIY project. Many of today’s new laminate floors come in easy-to-install planks that simply snap together without the need for messy glue or nails to pound. Laminates can even be used over several types of existing flooring, often eliminating the need for costly sub-floor preparation.

“Consumers now have the choice of selecting laminate floor innovations that provide excellent performance and value, while also reflecting and accommodating their changing tastes,” Katz says. “Laminate flooring solutions keep up with their day-to-day life. That’s something we know will never go out of style.” For more information about the latest trends in laminate flooring, visit

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