As a flooring material, hardwood has found itself becoming more and more popular since the shag rug era or the 70’s and 80’s.  The ease of keeping it clean, its durability, its natural good looks and a myriad of other redeeming qualities has made hardwood the flooring choice for more homeowners today.  Although everyone has their own personal tastes, there are definite trends in the hardwood flooring world.  Here’s a few  predictions for 2018.

Dark Tones

Dark tones seem to have become more popular over the past 10 or 15 years.  The stylish good looks of dark hardwood have made it popular with blends of ebony and jacobean or ebony and walnut creating the deepest hues.  Darker stains have also allowed homeowners to deepen the colour of their existing floors. If there is a drawback to the darkest hardwoods it’s the fact that they show dust quite readily and therefore don’t work as well in homes with children or pets.  In that case, slightly lighter shades can offer the best of both worlds.

Eco Friendly Finishes

Water based, polyurethane finishes may cost more, but have the added advantage of being a fast drying, durable finish that produces less odours due to its lower levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs).  An even more environmentally friendly option is oiled floors which have no VOCs or polyurethane whatsoever.  Although it’s easier to fix scratches on oiled floors, the downsides are the cost and the lack of protective finish provided by polyurethane which leaves the wood vulnerable to moisture.

Wire Brushed Floors

The texture provided by wire brushing floors exposes the wood’s grain and gives it a vintage, distressed lookthat helps hide dirt and wear.  Wire brushed flooring is finished by hand and therefore ends up with a bit of texture that may cause the floor to be less slippery than other types of finishes.  If there is a disadvantage to wire brushed floors it becomes apparent if any sanding is needed.  It’s not very easy to get away with sanding only a few boards or a small area as the sanded area will look quite different from the rest of the floor.