We recognize that there are aesthetic and functional differences between hardwood and softwood floors. So which type would suit your rental property best? A simple answer won’t cut it. You’ll need to understand the important differences between hardwood and softwood flooring so that you could better choose which flooring will work best for your rental properties in East Haven.
We typically picture traditional oak planks when we talk about hardwood floors since that is what’s used for the vast majority of wood flooring. But oak is not the only hardwood choice you have. Hardwood comes from a classification of trees that are slow-growing with a complex structure. This is why traditional hardwoods are so durable. Besides oak, the most common types of hardwood used for floors include maple, birch, and beech, along with walnut and bamboo.
Softwood floors are still an attractive option for many property owners even though they aren’t as popular as hardwood floors. Considered “soft” in relation to its hardwood counterpart, the name of this flooring comes from the increased tendency of the wood to show dings and dents. The most well-known types of softwood floors are made from pine and fir, but options like cedar, hemlock, and cypress are also available.
For some rental properties, choosing either hardwood or softwood floors depends on how you want to position your property on the market. For example, a traditional hardwood floor may be more appealing to a certain type of renter, and it could also raise the level of your rental home to be in line with similar homes. It would be beneficial for rental homes in upscale areas, in particular, since tenants looking for a rental home in these areas typically want the beauty and durability of a hardwood floor. For softwood flooring, it has an appealing rustic charm that it adds to a property, which is a real plus in areas where tenants want that aesthetic.
There are also some long-term benefits with a hardwood or softwood floor. Hardwood floors can help you avoid replacing carpet every five years, and it also requires minimal maintenance to keep it in good condition. Softwood flooring is often less expensive, helping you create the custom interior you want in your rental home for far less than you might expect.
Wood floors (of either variety) come with a few disadvantages as well. Hardwood can be very expensive. It really is a significant investment especially if you also include the cost of professional installation. That investment may not always be earned back right away. In some instances, it would take years before the hardwood floor will start to pay for itself.
What’s more, if hardwood floors are not in high demand in your area, you may not see much of an increase in either property value or rental income. However, softwood can get damaged quite easily, making this a poor choice for high-traffic areas like walkways and kitchens. Both hardwood and softwood floors are also susceptible to moisture damage, and may not work well in humid climates or flood zones.
Given both the pros and cons of installing hardwood or softwood floors, it can be difficult to know which flooring makes sense for your rental home. But you can overcome this challenge by gathering the right information. This is why it is really important to have a thorough knowledge of your target demographic, your local market, and your financial goals.
When you have a good grasp of who you want to rent to, how your property stacks when compared to others in your area, and how much you want to invest in upgrading the home, you can make an informed decision on which flooring is best for your property. To know more about how we can help you with your East Haven property management journey, please contact us online or give us a ring at 203-821-7303 today.
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