We absolutely love the look, feel, and maintainability of wood floors, but do you take a chance in a BNB using them with so many different people coming and going?
We request our guests to not use their outdoor shoes in the house.
We offer them indoor slippers or let them know it’s okay to walk around in their socks, but slippers are best.
When I grew up in Palo Alto, we did in an Americanized way especially since I worked out of the house for several years with my father’s roofing and industrial electric vehicle companies. Coming in and out of the house was done with shoes on.
As a result, we usually had pretty worn carpets and a floor that would probably make the traditional Chinese housewife go into mental convulsions.
It wasn’t until after I married my wife, who grew up in China, that she helped me realize how atrocious it is to wear outdoor shoes in the house (assuming you keep a clean floor). Well, you think about it, the germs and grime caught on your shoes from every public bathroom you’ve walked through is not something you really want transferred to your home floors. Moreover, the amount of dirt that is tracked into the house is quite significant, greatly increasing the wear and tear on flooring whether carpets, hardwood or even ceramic tile.
KEEPING THE FLOORS CLEAN
When we clean up our BNB we always vacuum and do a light mop (well rung) with a bit of mild soap to refresh the floors. It’s nice to keep any allergens down too which having carpets would just make too difficult and takes longer to clean.
I don’t meet every guest, but sometimes I get an opportunity. It’s always an exercise in ambassadorship and tact when you meet a guest who didn’t quite get that “no shoes” House Rule but the people we’ve met realize their error quickly enough with usually a slight blush. Usually you just do it (take your shoes off) and the guest gets it. By accommodating our rule, they participate in the enjoyment of a cleaner environment.
TYPE OF WOOD FLOOR
As for the hardwood its self, since the house is not on a slab foundation, we used finished ¾” solid wood* (oak) throughout except for in the bathrooms where we used porcelain tile. We used finished planks for the convenience of not spending a week to finish, but still have the option in the future for custom professional refinishing.
It was a big decision not to use tile in the kitchen where the chance of water damage is higher, but since our floorplan is relatively small, keeping consistent flooring across the common area makes the living space feel larger, cleaner, brighter, and better designed. Additionally, because of our smaller space, we used a “natural” white Oak instead of something lighter or darker. Too Dark colors make your space look smaller and less energetic, while too Bright colors, or something with less wood grain like Ash or Maple, are less forgiving and harder to keep looking clean as a result of any possible scratches or dings.
We almost went with a really bright Ash plank to make a modern look statement but chose not to, as Ash wood is also a bit softer than Oak and therefore more apt to damage. Although natural Oak and natural Ash or Maple, could be a similar in color, it’s the grain of the wood that can help hide imperfections while still offering a brighter result.
*Before installing wood planks, the product needs to adjust to your house’s environment by airing out for several days before installation. Ask your dealer for details.
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