Updated for 2022
Many people say that the kitchen is the hub of a home. As true as that may be, the dining room is where we go to sit and enjoy the fruits of the kitchen. The dining room is a gathering place for friends and family, which makes it a great area of the home to invest in. But as we all know, the dining room is also an area that is prone to food and drink spills!
This means that your dining room floor has a tough job – it needs to look inviting and visually appealing while being durable and easy to clean. Fortunately, we’ve made a guide that discusses the most popular dining room floor options so that you can choose the perfect flooring type for your home.
Whether you have a separate dining room or a combined dining room and kitchen, this Home Flooring Pros guide offers you the top dining room flooring options on the market.
- Hardwood Flooring – Whether you choose solid hardwood flooring, engineered hardwood flooring or even bamboo flooring, you’ll enjoy a durable floor that combines good looks with a surface that is easy to clean and maintain. Hardwood floors are known for their timeless and beautiful look, so if you’re looking for a statement piece, hardwood flooring might be the right choice for you!
- Laminate flooring – A lower-cost alternative to hardwood floors that you may also want to consider among your dining room flooring options is laminate. Laminate flooring is one of the easiest to clean surfaces out there. There are no grooves or spaces between tiles and floorboards to worry about, so you can keep this type of floor spotless for years to come.
- Luxury Vinyl flooring – A durable and beautiful option that is available in both planks and tiles to fit your dining room style. Luxury vinyl imitates the appearance of wood or stone, but is more affordable and much easier to clean, so it is the best of both worlds!
- Carpeting – This flooring material can work well in dining rooms because of its warmth and the fact it tends to insulate the space from outside noise. Attractive Berbers and other weaves are ideal for this purpose. If you’re trying to create a cozy and inviting space, carpet is a great option to consider.
- Natural Stone Flooring – If you want a real sense of luxury and beauty in your dining room, natural stone is a great choice. It is easy to care for and gives an upscale feel wherever it is installed.
- Cork Flooring – If you haven’t seen what’s available in cork today, you owe it to yourself to discover it. Cork is soft underfoot but durable enough to handle the demands of a dining room floor. It is an inexpensive choice with a big payoff.
All of these dining room flooring options are offered in patterns and styles that will fit your decorating plan.
The Best Dining Room Floor for Your Needs
Have any of these flooring types caught your interest yet? Let’s take a deeper look at each of the flooring options above and discuss the pros and cons of each as they relate to the different needs of particular homes. Comparing one flooring type with another will help you decide which floor best suits your specific lifestyle and location. As you read the descriptions below, consider your home’s style and atmosphere.
Wood floors certainly bring style to a dining room and, as discussed above, they are durable and easy to clean. On the downside they are more expensive than other options so if you have a tight budget, hardwood floors may not be the best choice for your home.
Remember though, quality wood floors that are well maintained will last you a lifetime, so in the long run they can be very cost effective. Wood floors are perfect for city apartments and homes in a moderate climate.
However, if your home is in a region of high humidity, you might want to steer clear of wood floors as they tend to warp, swell, and shrink with changing moisture levels.
Another factor to consider is the lifestyle of your family. Do you have pets that tend to bring in elements from the outdoors like rainwater, mud, or sand? If so, you might be setting yourself up for a lot more maintenance work with a hardwood floor.
If hardwood flooring isn’t in the budget right now, why not take a look at laminate wood flooring?
Laminate flooring is the least expensive flooring type, and one of the easiest to clean and maintain! Laminate floors can imitate the look of wood, tile, or stone while being much, much cheaper. They are also quick and easy to install, and durable too.
We always advise buyers to invest in the best quality flooring they can afford and they should definitely do so if their dining room is part of an open plan family kitchen/diner with heavy traffic. If you have a stand-alone formal dining room that is used less often any reputable laminate product should be just fine.
Luxury Vinyl Flooring
Luxury vinyl is available in both planks (LVP) and tiles (LVT). This flooring type originated in the early 2000’s and has gained huge popularity among homeowners. Why? Luxury vinyl is beautiful, durable, easy to clean, and an affordable alternative to wood flooring.
Luxury vinyl planks are crafted to look just like real wood, but with twice the toughness and half the price. Similarly, luxury vinyl tiles mimic the appearance of stone or marble without breaking the bank. Especially in an area like the dining room where food and drink often end up on the floor, having luxury vinyl flooring can be a huge advantage.
Carpet and Rugs
Carpets and rugs are warm and easy on the feet, perfect for a cold climate. However, carpet is really only suitable for specific living situations.
Don’t use carpet in a dining room if you have young children, because food and drink spills can be quite difficult to clean out of the fibrous texture. After a while, you could end up with a stained and visually unappealing carpet rather than the nice cozy one you started out with.
Carpets may not be a great option for households with a lot of pets either, although one or two well-trained pets shouldn’t be a problem. Animals like cats and dogs are more likely to choose a carpeted area to use as a bathroom spot, and they tend to like scratching at the interesting carpet texture as well.
The third factor to consider is how much use your dining room gets. If you’re very social and often have dinner guests then carpet probably isn’t the way to go. That said, for a couple on a budget they work just fine.
Tile & Stone
You certainly will make a strong statement using natural stone or ceramic tile in the dining room, but there are a few things to consider before deciding on this flooring type.
Both stone and tile can be expensive, although there are some cheaper tile options out there. In general, the less expensive the tile, the less attractive it is, so if your heart is set on a tile floor, make sure to budget for a good quality one! Tile and stone flooring installation can be costly as well.
Stone and tile floors are best suited for a formal dining room and a warmer climate. Remember that if you live in a cold part of the country and you have a large dining room, you run the risk of creating a space that is cold and echoes. This problem can be offset by underfloor heating or adding a nice area rug.
Cork flooring is another interesting choice for a dining room. It’s durable but softer underfoot than hardwood and gives a sense of warmth to a room.
It does however have quite a unique look and is harder to blend with the rest of your home decor. Stylistically it either suits your tastes or it doesn’t, as you will see from these cork flooring pros and cons.
Cork is also popular for its eco-friendliness as a sustainable and biodegradable material. If living sustainably is a priority to you, cork is a great flooring material to consider!
Now that we’ve taken a good look at the most popular dining room floor types, you’re all set to start getting down to business in your own dining room. What do you like aesthetically? What is your family’s lifestyle? What climate do you live in? The answers to these questions will help you choose the best flooring material for your home.
We invite you to offer your comments below about the type of flooring you’ve used in the dining room. How did it work out? Your input will help other readers consider their dining room flooring options and choose one they’ll love. Also, feel free to contact us directly.
Dining Room Floor Inspiration – Photo and Image Ideas
On our Pinterst Board you can find a wide range of photos from across the web that will give you plenty ideas for designing and installing your dream dining room floor.
About the Author:
Jamie Sandford is the Owner and Chief Editor of Home Flooring Pros (find out more). After 12 years’ experience in screen and stage set construction followed by a further 15 years working in the home renovation/remodeling business he now writes and curates online home improvement advice.
“Buying and installing home flooring should be a fairly straightforward process, but often it isn’t. After more than 15 years’ experience in home flooring and remodeling, I started Home Flooring Pros in 2013 to help homeowners navigate the often-over complicated process of choosing, buying and installing a home floor. The aim is to save you time and money by helping you to make better floor buying decisions.”