Decorating your new house, or your existing one, can be very expensive. Flooring can be particularly costly. You can use up a large part of your budget on tiles, carpet or vinyl, especially when you add on the cost of professional fitting.
If you’re feeling creative and you have some basic DIY skills, then there are alternatives to simply buying conventional flooring. This leaves you with money to spend elsewhere, or to save for something really special later, like solid wood flooring.
Many shops will give carpet samples away for free, or very, very cheaply. You can assemble carpet samples into area rugs, or even carpet whole rooms with them – although you’ll still pay for underlay. If you want to create something moveable, you can stick the samples to a sheet of drop cloth.
Playing cards, Scrabble tiles – any material that can be laid flat and covered with sealant can be used to create an unusual floor covering.
Concrete is cheap and indestructible. It can be stained, patterned or have other substances such as tiles, glass or smooth stone embedded in it to make it more interesting.
Samples and leftovers of hardwoods and laminates
Hardwood and laminate flooring, like that supplied by http://www.ukflooringdirect.co.uk/solid-wood-flooring is increasingly popular, and so more and more available. You can find an interesting range of woods to place in your own unique pattern.
Remnant (end of roll) carpeting
Remnants and roll ends are usually bigger than carpet samples, so they can be used in bigger rooms.
Salvaged or clearance tiles
Like leftover wood, clearance and salvage tiles can be used to create your own patterns.
People who are renovating their homes often have leftover materials and salvaged items too! Rather than just dump them, people are increasingly giving these materials away by advertising on sites like Freecycle. It’s useful, it saves you money and it’s good for the environment.
If you have a concrete or wood floor and you really can’t afford to replace it right now, painting it will give it a new look and a new lease of life.
For more ideas for cheap and cheerful flooring, check out this article http://www.savingadvice.com/articles/2011/03/02/107031_alternative-flooring-strange-ways-to-save-money.html.
All of these options are useful if you’re just starting out, are working on a second property or you just fancy trying new ideas.