Choosing a floor tile material and overall design can be a challenge, simply because you have so many options from which to choose! While you'll need to consider your budget, picking the cheapest tile can be a mistake, as cheap tiles may suffer wear and tear very easily, and start to look dull and dingy before too long. Instead of choosing your home's flooring tile by price alone, note a few tips before shopping, so you know you're happy with your flooring choices and know what to expect by way of their maintenance and care over the years.
In a home with children and pets, you might opt for a laminate tile. This tile is covered with a thin layer of strong plastic that suffers little wear and tear over the years.
Stone tiles are very rich and elegant, and their natural hues and tones can keep a long, large floor from looking boring. Stone tiles are also very cool underfoot, so they're good in tropical or desert areas, or for rooms with lots of hot, direct sunlight. However, stone may easily absorb food stains and spills, so the material is not the best for many kitchens. Stone also needs consistent sealing over the years, and these tiles can actually crack under a heavy impact, so they're not as maintenance-free as you might assume.
In a home where you need floors with maximum stain resistance, consider porcelain. This is a type of clay tile that is baked until it hardens, which makes it naturally resistant to stains. Porcelain tiles can be painted any colour, but you might choose a more natural, reddish colour if you want to introduce a Mediterranean look into the home.
Mosaic tiles are very small and usually attached to a type of backing, so that you can install larger areas of tile more quickly and easily. The smaller tile also means more grout lines over a floor, making a mosaic tile a good choice for bathrooms, as more grout on the floor means more traction even when the tiles are wet. The smaller tiles that make up a mosaic can also add visual interest to a small floor, whereas larger tiles in a small space might seem out of proportion, and do little to make the floor stand out. Choose mosaic tiles in a circle or hexagon shape if you want to add a retro look to the floor as well.