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Tile that looks like hardwood? Consumer Reports says it can be a good option

Posted August 4

New hardwood floors can look amazing. Hardwoods are the number one pick for new flooring, but they can be expensive.

Rachel Trobman wanted new beautiful and durable hardwood floors for her guestroom, but she could not afford them

"We knew the cost associated with the wood, everything from like staining it to the fact we wouldn't put it down ourselves, we knew that was not in our budget," she said.

So she opted for tile that looks like wood.

Consumer Reports says the tile is a good option for kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms - rooms where it is smart to avoid hardwood floors.

Testers assessed dozens of tile options to check how well they held up against dents and scratches, as well as whether they faded in the sun over time.

"You really want to match the material to the room, based on things like traffic, sunlight and how much wear and tear you expect," said Paul Hope with Consumer Reports.

A porcelain tile from Lumber Liquidators looks like Brazilian cherry. Its resistance to traffic, scratching and cracking make it an ideal choice for a kitchen or mudroom.

For high-traffic areas, a vinyl tile from Armstrong fends off stains and scratches well and comes in four shades.

If you’re on a budget yet need an update -- an easy-to-clean laminate from Pergo is just $2.80 a square foot at Home Depot, but testers say it looks like it came from Mother Nature.

It is also important to keep in mind that batches of flooring can vary from one batch to the next, so Consumer Reports recommends buying all of the flooring at the same time.

For laminate floors, the boards within a given box will often have a similar pattern. To reduce repetition, mix boards from different boxes when it is installed.

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