Being environmentally conscious has always been a topic near and dear to my heart. As an interior designer, mom and recently, a new homeowner, I understand the desire to select flooring materials which are not only safe and meet the lifestyle needs of the occupants, but that are eco-friendly for our environment.
In my home, the finishes selected needed to be classic in style and easy to maintain with green cleaning products, all of course while meeting my budget. Honing in on those products which were appropriate for my family’s everyday life was of utmost importance.
Maintenance without the use of chemical cleaners was a priority, so I gravitated towards materials in which water could be effective as the cleaning agent. Products such as Tile, Stone and Luxury Vinyl Plank are at the top of the list as these products can and should be cleaned with water or water-based products and are also quite durable, and are less likely to be replaced often. Eliminating a high-maintenance floor material also helps remove the potential of exposure to more harmful chemicals on a regular basis.
Selecting a floor which can stand the test of time, is an important option if your priority is the environment impact. Most homebuyers are weighing their options in design versatility, durability, cost and value. However, selecting a classic style that is less trendy, will stay in style for years to come and may be the best possible environmental decision as well. Leaving the flooring in place for longer periods of time results in less product being manufactured, and reduces waste in landfills.
The largest flooring culprit making into our landfills is carpet. But thankfully, carpet manufacturers have been responding to these environmental concerns and creating solutions to improve the impact. A large selection of carpet styles now includes recycled content derived from recycled plastic beverage bottles. In addition, some carpet manufacturers have developed technology which recycles used carpet and converts it back into new carpet. So, if your budget requires a more cost-conscious material, look for these types of environmentally supportive options.
The flooring selections I made for my family and home took all the above into consideration. I selected a Luxury Vinyl Plank with a large variation in color tones, replicating a wood floor. My flooring requires very little maintenance, and when it does, chemicals are not needed. My flooring will last for years and I’m a happy mom, living in a healthy, low maintenance home, having reduced my impact on the environment.
The best outcome of my low maintenance flooring choice is having more time to spend with my family!