If you've been thinking about doing a tile or hardwood flooring upgrade in your home, then chances are that you also want to have some trim replaced at the same time. It makes sense to upgrade baseboards and door casings whenever you install new flooring because in many cases, the old baseboards will have to be removed. In the process of being removed, these old baseboards are very likely to be damaged, and unless you have extra, they will need to be replaced. This can be a great opportunity to upgrade to a taller baseboard.
In some cases, leaving the existing baseboards installed can be a good option. You might do this when you are installing new flooring but are happy with the look of the existing baseboard, especially if it has been replaced previously. In this case, a nice shoe moulding or quarter round trim can be installed with a fresh coat of semi-gloss trim paint to spruce things up. The finished product will look fresh and the new moulding will have added some depth and dimension to the overall trim package.
The vast majority of homes that I have seen have little in the way of a trim package beyond what the original home builder installed. This means that baseboards are quite skimpy, often no higher than three inches, and door and window casings are not much different. Without paying attention to it, you might not notice that your trim is actually quite anemic, but if you saw what your home could look like with a nice upgrade, you'd be shocked. Upgrading from a three or four inch baseboard to a six or seven inch high product makes a huge difference in most rooms, even if you only have eight foot high ceilings. Even swapping out the standard door and window casings for something more modern can make a design statement without breaking the bank.
You should check out some local trim shops for pricing on various types of baseboards, casings, crown mouldings, and more. Often times, a local shop will have much better pricing and selection than what you would typically find at your big-box retailers, in even longer lengths. This means that you will have less visible seams in rooms with long walls when the trim is finally installed. The downside here is that unless you have the means to pick up these pieces of trim yourself (which often are available in lengths of up to 16 feet or more) you will have to pay a delivery charge for your trim to be delivered on a flat bed trailer. This might not matter to you if you have a relatively large order - however, for small orders of only a few pieces you would end up paying more for delivery than the cost of the actual product.
Trim is available in different materials as well. MDF (medium density fibreboard) is very popular thanks to its ease of use and excellent finished appearance. Any nail holes are easily filled and sanded before painting, leaving a uniform finish. Wood trim is another option, but it has its drawbacks - it is not as flexible as MDF, and the paint finish won't look exactly the same. Remember that wood has a grain, and if you paint it, it will still show through at a close enough distance. Still, the benefits of wood trim may sway you towards it. If you don't want your trim to be painted white, and instead would like to have trim stained to match existing kitchen cabinets or hardwood flooring, wood trim might be for you. You can stain it to match virtually any existing finish that you have in your home. Other available trim materials, like vinyl, are desirable in terms of having a clean look and being maintenance free. It will be durable and long lasting, requiring no attention from the homeowner in terms of upkeep, which is a plus for those with busy schedules.
In short, there really is no right or wrong method of selecting the material of trim for your home. It just depends on what suits your personal needs and tastes. The availability of all of these products for homeowners makes it easy to find something that you like. If you are unsure of what might be appropriate for your particular home, consult with your contractor to see what would be best.
Tremendous Tile Installations Inc. can take of your trim! Give us a call today if you are interested in that baseboard upgrade!