Laminate flooring is all the rage these days due to it being affordable and looking trendy at the same time. Unlike real hardwood flooring that can cost well over R1000/m2 laminate starts at R100/m2. This even allows people with a budget to renovate their home floors effortlessly.
The main advantage of laminate is that is looks nearly identical to proper wood floors but doesn't cost as much. It is also much quicker and easier to install in your home. If you are technically inclined you could very well install it yourself over a weekend. Naturally this will save on costs but if the budget isn't a concern then I would advise getting it done professionally. It makes your life a lot easier and saves you a lot of effort and sweat.
The difference between laminate flooring and real wood is the former is made up of composite ply wood and the latter from real hardwood. Although the look is similar you will be able to tell the difference. Real hardwood has the feel and texture which is nearly impossible to imitate. But with that comes a cost of roughly ten times more.
Laminate flooring in Cape Town has the benefit of there being many high quality suppliers. This allows you to get quality flooring advice that you can trust and know you are not being taken for a ride. The best way is to request a free quote from a few suppliers and then determine which one fits your budget the best. You will also get a sense of how their professionalism is when you meet them.
There are some disadvantages of using laminate instead of other options. It has the risk of chipping and scratching as it's not as hard as real wood. Continuing with this is that you are also not able to refinish the flooring when it is damaged. With real wood you can simply sand it and re-coat if there are scratches and marks. This is not the case with laminate and the floor boards that are damaged will need to be replaced. At least at R100/m2 they are not overly expensive to replace.
Laminate is also not good with liquids. If you have an area that receives water-spills such as in the bathroom and kitchen then you would probably be better going with a different type of flooring. Vinyl and tile laminate would be good alternatives here. They can handle moisture a lot better and are also similarly priced.
Another benefit of laminate floors is that you have endless options for the style you want. There are unlimited colours and patterns to choose from. Unlike real hardwood that only comes in a set number of colours and grains depending on the tree. A major feel good factor is that laminate flooring is a lot more eco-friendly. Instead of it using rare woods that take nearly a hundred years to mature it uses much more sustainable materials. Make sure to check that the flooring you purchase has "sustainability" stamps.
Getting a new laminate floor for summer is a great idea and will give your home a very nice makeover.