The kitchen is the most used area of the house. It’s the central hub/command center for everything that is happening with you and your family. Remember, this is going to be the most walked area in the house. People will spill drinks, kids will throw food, and the sink may overflow. Durability and maintenance are definitely a priority for a kitchen floor. Luckily, most modern materials score high in this department. Concrete, stone and vinyl are probably the best options, but if you are going for a softer look, you can choose wood laminate. If comfort (some cushioning underfoot is always helpful) is an issue you can try bamboo or cork floors which are on their way to becoming next year’s trend setters.

Here’s a list of the types of materials you can choose from:

  1. Bamboo: Apart from being strong and durable, bamboo has the added benefit of being one of the most eco-friendly materials for flooring. Do check with your supplier about the warranty because bamboo quality is best judged by the length of the warranty period.
  2. Carpet: Not the first choice for kitchens given the high risk of spills and stains. Believe it or not, carpets have made a come-back in the form of easy to install carpet tiles. Maintenance is a breeze because you can remove individual tiles for cleaning.
  3. Concrete: Talk about durability! Concrete is no longer solid and boring – you can choose from stamping, staining, polishing and stenciling to add your own special touch to a concrete floor. Concrete is best for high temperature areas unless you can afford floor heating.
  4. Cork: This is the latest fad in kitchen flooring and is a great insulator for both heat and sound. Cork tiles are a DIY project, have natural anti-microbial properties and are great for cushioning your feet.
  5. Laminate Wood: Everyone loves wood flooring although maintenance can be an issue. Luckily, laminate wood flooring can mimic the look of a number of natural woods and it’s very durable. For extra comfort you can add an under-layer which will also protect your flooring from seepage.
  6. Stone: Marble is always trendy and the unique natural patterns/colors add a special earthy tone to your kitchen. Durability is obviously not an issue but you should check with your supplier if the type of stone you are selecting is likely to stain.
  7. Tiles: Porcelain and ceramic tiles are the “in thing” and owe their popularity to the sheer variety of size, texture, pattern and color available. Stains will never be an issue, but that little space between the tiles does need some scrubbing to keep it spotless.
  8. Vinyl: Unbeatably cost-effective and low-maintenance. Vinyl is available in easy to install tiles or as sheets. It is quite suitable for the entire house, including kitchens and bathrooms thanks to the high water resistance. But the reason vinyl’s so popular is the number of “wood-style” options available, like the one below from