Choosing the Best Flooring for Your Rental Property

22 July 2018

a 4-minute read

As a landlord, you’ll know that decorating a property is a delicate balance between providing an environment that’s welcoming and attractive to tenants, but durable and cost-effective for you. However, with so many flooring options available, from hard-wearing carpets to vinyl and laminate, how do you go about choosing the best flooring for your rental accommodation?

Know Your Aims

When selecting flooring for a rental property, think about what you want to achieve. The best flooring options will not only make a property look like a home to potential tenants, but they will also be able to endure the wear-and-tear of everyday rental life. This durability is essential if you want to avoid the costly and time-consuming process of replacing the flooring every time you get a new tenant.

Flooring should also be low-maintenance – for the same reason – and help both you and your tenants keep other costs down. For example, an easy clean carpet will save you a fortune in cleaning costs while also providing excellent insulation, keeping your tenants’ heating bills down too.

What to Consider

Property type

The style and type of property you own is a key consideration when it comes to choosing the best flooring. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed with choice, bear in mind that a neutral coloured carpet will fit in with pretty much any style of decor.

If you’re renting out a flat with other properties beneath, it’s also important to consider the neighbours! Even the smallest sounds can travel far on a hardwood floor, so carpet is the best option for muffling sound if you want to avoid the hassle of complaints from downstairs.

Property size

Not all properties can cope with grand marble tiles or fancy hardwood floors. If you’re working with a smaller space, think about what will make it look bigger; a plain floor or neutral coloured carpet will work well in this instance.


It’s a good idea to consider who you’ll be renting to. Young families make up a large portion of the rental market and you may find that carpet is a preferable option for families who have the safety of young children to think about. However, if you want to make your property available to people with pets, thinner pile carpet (that won’t get pulled up by claws) or scratch-resistant laminate or vinyl can be better options.


As a landlord, splashing out on an expensive floor isn’t generally a cost-effective option, especially as rental property flooring is usually subject to a lot more wear and tear than flooring in non-rental properties. A hard-wearing carpet is probably the more cost-effective choice, with laminate or vinyl a close second.

A Few More Words of Wisdom…

Think on a room by room basis

While carpet might be the best flooring option for bedrooms and communal areas, it isn’t necessarily going to be so good in other rooms. For example, carpeted bathrooms are a big no-no for obvious reasons, while kitchens might also benefit from a more water-resistant and wipeable option like vinyl.

What is right for your home may not be right for a rental property

Now it’s obviously a given that you have impeccable taste, but when it comes to buying for your own home, you’re more likely to be thinking about the best look and quality you can afford. Again, this isn’t so cost-effective in rental properties, which might not be as well taken care of as your own home.

It’s also important to make sure your property appeals to the broadest spectrum of tastes. The best way to do this is to provide a completely neutral palette that tenants will feel like they can make their own without spending a great deal on decorating; neutral and natural fibre carpets usually work best.

Avoid common pitfalls

Of course, the decision on which flooring you choose is entirely yours. However, there are a few hard and fast rules it’s good to follow:

  • A number of tenants say that a carpeted bathroom would put them off a property entirely; avoid at all costs!
  • In fact, wooden floors in bathrooms are also best avoided – your safest best is to stick to low-maintenance and water-resistant laminate and vinyl.
  • Carpet is perfect for bedrooms and common areas in rental properties, as long as you choose the right colour. The prospect of keeping a bright or white carpet clean can put tenants off, so opt for natural tones or stylish neutral greys that will look good and stay looking good.
  • The cheapest option isn’t always the best option, especially if it leads to more maintenance and refitting.
  • Don’t be tempted to lay your floor yourself unless you’re sure you know what you’re doing; a badly laid carpet or poorly fitted laminate floor is bound to put off prospective renters.

Hopefully, this guide has given you a good idea of what flooring may work for your property. For more advice, or to arrange a free consultation to discuss your rental property needs, give us a call on 01473 717 171 or email us at [email protected].

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