I’m here today to give you a an update on our new house. You can see what we did to the kitchen and living room in our last post here. Today we are talking about floors. This floor had the original asbestos tile in the living room, and in the kitchen there were two layers of linoleum. Those were gone with the demo and we were left with a slab in the main living space, and had to make a decision about what to do next.
What I really liked about our last house was that we decided right away to have floors that matched throughout the house. What that does for such as small living space is it creates more of an open cohesive feeling throughout the space.
I really wanted to take that same concept into this house too. When you have multiple types of flooring throughout different spaces, it can feel really choppy and create even more separation in a house, causing it to feel smaller than necessary. So having cohesive floors throughout was a must for me.
Now one problem that we came across when we started researching floors, is that our house was actually built to only have very thin flooring. What I mean by that is when this house was built they did not take into consideration any future flooring options over an eighth of an inch thick. We were basically stuck with either doing a laminate floor again, or rebuilding both sets of stairs. There was really no other way around it.
Our floor guy pointed this out when we were considering getting hardwood floors. This ends up being problematic when we get to the stairs. In order to keep the house to inspection code, we couldn’t add too much height to our floors without having to redistribute the height of each riser in our staircases. It was going to add another $2000 on top of an already rather expensive project.
When we found this out we were really debating just going with a engineered floor which is a lot thinner or maybe even just doing a laminate over top of the slab. But even then an engineered floor, or even a hardwood floor that is thinner, or a glue down floor which would eliminate the need for a sub floor, would still add too much height to the bottom step. So in the end we decided we wanted to we wanted what we wanted and that meant we were going to get hardwood floors regardless. I think if we were to make any other choice we would have really regretted it in the long run so I’m happy with that decision. But that also meant we did have to get both sets of stairs rebuilt in order to accommodate the new height of the floors with subfloor and hardwood floors on top of the slab.
With the hardwood floor installation scheduled, we had two weeks to clear out the space, clean the floors, and seal the floors. I’m sure I must’ve mentioned before that the smell of this house is just horrendous. Thankfully we have some experience with this from our previous house.
We basically did the same thing over the slab in that house. We cleaned everything really well and then went over the entire surface with Kilz oil-based stain blocker. It did such a good job hiding all of the pet stain smells from our last house, that we decided to do the exact same thing with this floor.
If you want to see in detail how we clean concrete floors, check out this post where are use the same method for cleaning our basement floors.
Basically we scrub the floor and right after we were done scrubbing one of us would come back through with a wet vac and vacuum up all of the dirty water. This make sure that the dirt doesn’t dry right back onto the cement. We did this three or four times until we work with the satisfied that the floor was clean. We let it dry overnight in came back the next day to add two coats of Kilz.
I started to get really excited when the Kilz went down because it really just brightened the entire space.
Having a white floor and white walls made it feel so refreshed. I was seriously so happy to be in a clean bright space. And then I got to thinking about what I want to do with these hardwood floors when they go down.
Originally I thought I would just do the same stain color as I did in the last house which was dark walnut. But seeing the light floors in this house really made me second-guess that decision.
Now I think I really want to do a light color floor. I don’t want to paint the wood, but I think having a lighter color is going to keep the space feeling clean and bright. We are getting so close to being able to pick out paint colors and stains and I cannot wait to share with you what I’m doing to these walls!!