7 Easy Ways to Change Your Flooring

Photo: istockphoto.com

Make flooring easy.

Maybe your carpet is dingy and showing its age. Perhaps the tile or vinyl flooring in the kitchen has seen better days. Do you have mismatched wood flooring in different rooms? No matter what your flooring situation is, you can find clever ways to make your floors look almost new again.

While the traditional way to change up flooring is to strip it down to the subfloor and build it up with your new flooring material of choice, that’s not always ideal or possible, especially if you’re renting or on a strict budget. These flooring ideas involve much less work, won’t break the bank, and several are renter-friendly.

1. Use vinyl decals.

Vinyl decals on bathroom tile

Photo: ShopDecochic via etsy.com

Vinyl decals are a budget-friendly option to change the look of your flooring. Like vinyl flooring, decorative vinyl comes in a variety of options, and decals are ideal for renters since they won’t damage the flooring underneath. Also known as peel-and-stick tiles, vinyl decals like these floor tile stickers by ShopDecochic at Etsy have a strong adhesive to stay in place and are easy to install. Plus, they are easy to clean, as you can just use soap and water to wipe them down. Vinyl decals come in a variety of colors and patterns and can be used as flooring or as a backsplash.

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2. Paint your floors.

Painting wooden floors

Photo: istockphoto.com

Do your wood floors need a refresh? Try a coat of paint. Applying paint can give your tired wood floors a new look, plus the right color can bring a new vibe to a room. Using paint to change the look of your flooring can be an inexpensive option if the floors are in desperate need of refinishing. If you rent, be sure to check with your landlord before painting.

Before you get started, there are some tricks to painting wood floors. First, you’ll want to clean and prep the floors before putting down a coat of primer. Make sure the primer is completely dry before you add a coat of paint. Let that dry and then repeat with a second coat and a sealant for wet or high-traffic areas.

RELATED: Vinyl Renaissance: 10 Flooring Looks You Won’t Believe

3. Try an area rug.

Area rug wooden floor

Photo: istockphoto.com

Area rugs just make sense to cover a floor, especially if you have wood or vinyl plank floors that are looking worn. An area rug can hide those imperfections, and it can bring a bright pop of color to a room and help define the space. Try a large area rug in a living room area, or strategically place smaller rugs in the kitchen and entryway. You can use furniture to help anchor a large rug, or place a rug pad or double-sided tape under small rugs to help keep them in place so they don’t become tripping hazards. Here’s a handy guide on how to choose the right area rug for your space.

4. Try peel-and-stick carpet tiles.

Peel and stick carpet tile

Photo: amazon.com

Peel-and-stick carpet tiles are a great option for covering up old vinyl, tile or hardwood flooring. Plus, carpet can bring a cozy, comfortable feel to a space. Peel-and-stick carpet tiles come in a variety of colors and patterns, and are easy to install. Plus, if one becomes damaged, you can easily remove and replace it. These carpet tiles have an adhesive to help them stay in place and they won’t leave any residue behind, making them an ideal option for renters. We like Smart Squares in a Snap Premium Soft Padded Carpet Tiles at Amazon for a plush look in the living room.

RELATED: Family-Friendly Floors: 5 Top Options for Busy Households

5. Consider vinyl or laminate planks.

Laminate plank installation

Photo: istockphoto.com

Both vinyl and laminate planks can be installed over wood, tile, and even low-pile carpet flooring, so they are a great solution for renters looking to change the look of their floors. Both are installed in the same way—by snapping and locking the planks together with their interlocking tongue-and-groove system. If you are installing planks over carpet, add ¼-inch plywood over the carpeted area to create a sturdy surface for installation. Vinyl and laminate plans also look, feel, and outperform hardwood, and they are a budget-friendly alternative to wood flooring.

RELATED: The Best Vinyl Plank Flooring Installers

6. Go with a carpet remnant.


Photo: istockphoto.com

If you have a smaller room you’d like to put carpet in but lack the big budget, try a carpet remnant. Carpet remnants are the last pieces of carpet from a roll that are sold at a discount. You may be limited in your choice of color or even size, but you still might find that remnants are a great option to add carpet to a room at an affordable price. Just make sure you have furniture to place along the edges to help hold the carpet down.

RELATED: The 8 Best Places to Buy Carpet

7. Look at composite decking.

Outdoor composite decking

Photo: istockphoto.com

If you have an outdoor space with an unsightly floor, composite decking might be a cost-effective solution. Composite decking works a lot like carpet tiles or plank flooring in that it locks together to stay in place. You can install it right over broken wood or cracked cement. But unlike vinyl or laminate planks, these planks are designed for outside use since they allow water to flow through them, so you don’t have to worry as much about mold or mildew. Plus, if you rent, you can just take the planks up when it’s time to move.

RELATED: The 7 Best Low-Cost Alternatives to Hardwood Flooring