Do you have unsightly floors? Tried scrubbing, bleaching and scrubbing again? Check out these 5 easy flooring fixes that will help reinvent your space.
If you’ve ever lived in an older home or even apartment, chances are you've encountered cracks, chips, stains, peeling corners, and missing grout on your tile, wood, or vinyl floors. If you are a renter, it can be frustrating to not be able to make permanent changes to these problem areas. Even if you do own your home and are able to make lasting floor repairs, fixing these trouble spots is often expensive and/or requires professional help. And don’t forget the time it takes.
In my previous rental, I had a slightly traumatic experience concerning the hardwood floors. To set the scene, me and three other unsuspecting students rented a home from a sweet couple in the historic district. We stumbled across a precious blue bungalow with budding pink crepe myrtle trees, long shaded porches, and the cutest bedroom attic we’d ever seen. Looking back, it was definitely a “rose colored glasses” moment when we signed the lease. What we didn’t realize initially was that there were quite a few holes in the wooden plank flooring (amid other quirks like creaking floors that come with living in a house older than your parents).
I only wish I had discovered these creative ways to cover up scratched, aged, and hole-covered flooring before I moved out. Instead of searching the web for creative solutions for repairing wood floors, I filled a couple of the holes with expanding foam, which is magical for insulation, and covered the rest of the gaps and cracks with our couch and mismatched rugs. Trust me when I say, I’m not being overly dramatic about this wooden floor repair. We did have holes in our creaking hardwood floors and if you took a peek through them you could see the dirt-covered earth underneath the home.
The South may be known for hospitality, but when it comes to creepy crawlers coming through holes in our floors, we have little tolerance.
These helpful ideas for hard flooring will aid you in flooring fixes, no matter the floor type. Well, for the most part. Although, I will have to cover creative solutions for hideous carpeting in another blog!
1. Rubber Mat Floors
I love the idea of rubber mat flooring. If you are renting or have a bathroom with out-of-date tile, chipped or stained floors, or peeling vinyl, imagine how you might transform the look of your bathroom with this fun flooring? Rubber flooring is long-lasting, durable, recyclable, easy to clean, and movable/non-permanent tile floor repair. You can purchase a large piece and cut it to the shape of your bathroom and fixtures, or you can go the easier route and acquire a piece that is large enough to cover just the main area in your bathroom.
Rubber floors are a wonderful option for any high-traffic room. Since the kitchen (and bathroom) can quickly become messy places, rubber floor/mats would be easy to clean and would also protect the flooring underneath, even if it isn’t pretty enough to protect! The blue rubber mat here makes this bathroom go from meh to wow!
This red rubber floor looks spiffy in this kitchen, right? Red is a wonderful color for a kitchen, but have you thought to put it on your floor? Well, now you have! Doesn’t it look great against the stark white decor of this kitchen? And check out the black and white checkerboard flooring! That looks wonderful against the green of the chairs and the cabinets!
There are so many creative ideas just waiting to be discovered on the internet. This is definitely one of them. I absolutely love the idea of turning recycled rubber into mats, floor squares, and rolls of flooring. The durability and lifespan of rubber is an added bonus.
Since my fiancé is scheduled to be commissioned into the Air Force soon, I am under the impression we will be renting a lot of little homes for small amounts of time in the upcoming years. I think investing in rubber squares and mats will be a great solution to the many used and worn kitchen and bathroom floors we will encounter. Since I am a clean freak, the idea of using my own flooring that can technically be portable and doesn’t have to be “installed” is both brilliant and exciting! Plus, the insulating properties of rubber make it a great floor creaking fix, if we happen to get in a place with a squeaky floor.
2. Floor Cloths
If you already know what a floor cloth is, you can skip ahead. But, if not, read on. I have been newly introduced to floor cloths and I’m in awe! According to HGTV, the floor cloth originated in the 1400s. However, the trend didn’t carry over to the American colonies until the 1700s. So, what is it? The floor cloth was first created by reusing old ship sails in order to cover hard floors or even dirt floors. Eventually, they were painted in order to add decoration to the home.
Today, floor cloths are sold for hundreds, even thousands, of dollars. They are durable, easy to clean, and chairs can easily slide over them. Different than carpet, their texture is hard and tile-like since they are painted and sealed. The best news is that there are tons of affordable DIY projects out there so you can recreate these for a VERY low cost. Check out Martha Stewart’s website for a detailed DIY project with templates and instructions.
Via the kitchn
Floor cloths are truly a great idea if you don’t have the money to invest in new floors for your kitchen, living room, mud room, or bathroom. If you are renting and don’t have permission to change the floors, these are a great solution because they can cover small and large areas. If you’re a painter, this is a fun way to display your art and incorporate it into your home’s design. If you’re not artistically inclined, consider asking a friend who is to help you decide on an original pattern!
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This striped floor cloth makes quite a statement underneath the white table and tablecloth! And it totally ties in with the sheer black curtains. The stenciled floor cloth is also stunning. It will be the main focal point of any room, and it deserves the spotlight!
Okay, I know rugs are an obvious solution to covering up your less-than-desirable flooring, but I thought I would approach this with a couple of ideas that I myself had yet to consider.
I love the idea of using multiple rugs to create a carpet look. I’m eclectic myself, so an idea like this sounds super fun. If you collect rugs, this is a great way to use them in a different light. Live in a place with cool temperatures? Using diverse rugs as floor covering can be a wonderful way to add warmth to your home, and another great way to hide potentially squeaky floors!
Another idea that is neither groundbreaking nor scientific, but is just plain useful, is carpet squares. A brilliant little design tool to cover up tough spots, these squares are typically used in commercial buildings, but why not turn them into a rug? They're also yet another way to help muffle floor squeaks! Carpet squares can be used anywhere, and you can take these precious pieces with you wherever you go next! Don’t be a square, give them a try!
Carpet squares are a great way to add in pops of color to a room. A super simple way to add color and pattern to a room, and you can take it with you! The multicolored carpet squares are probably my ultimate fav. All those patterns and colors are perfect for a nursery!
If you want to add some funky freshness to your place consider carpet grass in a small area. How fun is this? Carpet grass is easy to cut and install over existing flooring and can easily be removed when you move. Perfect way to fix a floor for a half-bath, children’s bathroom, or even a small laundry room!
Via maria killam
4. Tile on Tile
News to me, there is something called removable adhesive. Get excited! It magically allows you to place vinyl tile over tile! I think this is an amazing quick fix flooring option for renters who truly can’t get comfortable in their home until something happens to their floors! If you do decide to take this DIY project on, allow plenty of time because I’m sure it is quite the job. This will be a hefty project (moving furniture, cleaning existing flooring, taking measurements, etc.), but well worth it in the end when you have beautiful tile that can be removed. Although, your landlord might just request that you leave your tile fix installed when they see how good it looks!
I love these removable wood tiles. They're a water resistant floor fix so they would be perfect in a bathroom, kitchen, or entryway. Just remember that if your flooring is in horrible shape, you can always take a little time and install tile over tile, whether it be rolls of vinyl or squares.
5. Painting Floors
Painting floors is an amazing solution if you own your home. If you don’t, consider requesting permission from your landlord, or creating your own paintable and removable surface out of wood, canvas, or even rubber. I love the creativity involved in painting floors. It isn’t easy, but it’s a great solution if your floors have been sanded one too many times, your dingy white tile desperately needs a facelift, or buying new carpet and tiles isn’t in the budget.
You can’t really go wrong with black and white stripes, but if you’re going for a more subtle look, take a look at the cream and white checkerboard pattern below. Hello, beautiful flooring! My favorite though has to be the weathered look of the checkerboard painted floor above! It definitely adds interest to the room, and the distressed paint brings in the red of the bed frame. Whoever designed this room deserves a cookie, because it is wonderfully done, and it’s fun!
I hope you feel inspired to take your worn floors in stride. The best part about these projects is that no matter what element you choose to work with, you will add character to your home! It takes patience to devote time to home improvement projects, especially flooring repairs, but I think the things you learn along the way are well worth the sacrifice.
Comment if you have any additional tips for covering worn, scratched, and dingy floors, or if any of these ideas sparked a DIY project of your own! Please share with anyone you know who might need a little help with their unsightly flooring.
**Featured image via One Kings Lane