With summer around the corner, it’s time to start dreaming about smoky barbecue sausages, late-night drinks on the patio and that outdoor floor upgrade you’ve been putting off for years. Instead of just dreaming about flooring upgrades (we’ve all been there), now’s the time to stop thinking and start planning.
Your outdoor area is equally as important as your interior rooms and shouldn’t be neglected; imagine spending your summer afternoons relaxing in your newly-refurbished garden. Before we go overboard and start planning your full outdoor renovation, let’s start with the flooring. There are plenty of stylish options out there, each with their own advantages and price tags. Here’s seven to get you started.
1. Composite decking
If you’re looking for a long-term solution, you can’t go wrong with composite decking. It’s incredibly versatile – furnish with a wood-fire oven and bistro dining set for a rustic feel or a corner lounge with poolside chairs for a chic, trendy look. With technological advances, composite decking has the authentic look of wood without the installation hassles and ongoing high-maintenance. It works great for both expansive areas and small balconies with limited flooring space. It’s certainly not the cheapest, even compared to real wood, but it definitely has its benefits and should be seen as a long-term investment.
2. Outdoor carpet
No, your eyes aren’t playing tricks, and yes, you did read that correctly – outdoor carpet is a thing. Not the plush, fluffy kind, but short, low-pile. Its soft surface is ideal for outdoor areas, especially if you have children. Many outdoor carpets are available in tiles, which means you can combine different colours to achieve a unique and creative outdoor floor space. It’s an inexpensive option but does require a little more maintenance, like vacuuming and deep cleaning now and then.
3. Stone pavers
Stone is a timeless outdoor flooring material that creates a relaxed and welcoming setting. The traditional heritage gives a classic feel to a contemporary garden. Stone pavers are even stronger than concrete, which means they’re in it for the long haul. If a slab gets damaged, you can easily replace that one tile without disturbing the whole floor. Though they are an expensive option, there are few disadvantages to investing in stone pavers.
4. Stained concrete
If your garden floor is already concrete, here’s a stylish way to give it a makeover. Using acid, you can stain or stamp your concrete to create a striking marble-like effect. It’s a creative project that gives you the freedom to design an outdoor floor with personality. Concrete is a hardy material that is easy to clean and has a long lifespan, though it does have some downsides. It’s not the most comfortable to stand on and can put pressure on your joints. It also tends to get real dirty, real quick. So although cleaning is easy, you do end up sweeping a lot.
5. Stone-look tile
Real stone flooring, as we’ve seen, is a beautiful addition to any outdoor space. But, if you want that rustic charm without investing in the real thing, opt for stone-look tiles that are an affordable and almost identical alternative. They’re low-maintenance and durable, particularly if you choose a porcelain base. They’re not the best for pool areas as they can get slippy, but other than that, they’re a worthy contender.
6. Artificial turf
While we’re on the subject of authentic alternatives, we have to give an honourable mention to artificial grass. Gone are the days when fake grass looked exactly like its name – nowadays, you’d struggle to spot the difference between synthetic and real. If you have kids or pets and want a no-fuss floor, artificial is great. It’s allergy-free, soft to lie on, and there’s no mowing or sprinkling needed to maintain the length and lush green colour. The cost to purchase can be pricey, but there’s not much you’ll need to do for future upkeep.
7. Rubber pavers
Rubber is another material that mimics those sought-after materials, including stone and concrete. There are plenty of options available so you can choose a colour and style that suits your space. They’re inexpensive, soft underfoot, slip-resistant even when wet and easy to clean with a sporadic sweep. Downsides include their lifespan – they won’t outlast more permanent materials like concrete, and they don’t look as authentic as other mock materials.
We hope this list has given you some outdoor flooring ideas to spruce up your patio, garden or balcony. Treat your outdoor area the same way you would your interior rooms. Although you might not use it year-round, you’ll thank yourself when spring arrives and you can sip your coffee outside in your outdoor haven. For specific advice about your outdoor space, get in touch with us at Home Flooring. Although we’re specialists in carpet flooring, Calgary residents come to us with all their flooring needs, and we’re yet to disappoint them.