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How to choose stone flooring

Both engineered and natural stone flooring is a growing trend, and with good reason. Stone floors are durable, easy to clean and hard to damage. They don’t stain like carpet and will easily outlast wood. So if you’re thinking of switching to stone, how do you choose?

What do you like?

While there are a few practical considerations, which we’ll get to, the truth is that stone is as tough as rock, so almost all stones make great stone flooring. This means that your personal style and preferences can shine through. As an example, you might love the look of classic country kitchen flags, so choose a natural stone flooring, or you might really want warm toes, so choose stone tiles to trap the heat put out by underfloor venting. Whatever colour or style you’re looking for, from classic black granite through to pillar box red and royal blue, our collection of processed and natural stone flooring will have something to suit.

Indoors or out?

Stone is weatherproof so can be used indoors and out. However, the type of stone and finish may vary depending on where it’s used. As an example, marble and limestone are more delicate stones and also porous. This means that if they’re used outside or in high-traffic indoor areas, they should be sealed and treated to prevent stains.

Tiles or slabs?

This is a major consideration, and the choice typically comes down to the 3 factors: availability, price and weight. Not all stones are available in both tiles and slabs, so if you’ve set your heart on a particular shade of natural stone flooring, your choice may be limited. Slabs are typically more expensive than tiles as they use more stone, but for some harder to cut stones the inverse may be true. Slabs also weigh more than tiles, so if weight is a concern – for example in older houses – then this should be assessed.

Choosing the right finish

At Surrey Marble and Granite we cut and finish all stones in our own workshop. This means that we can offer our clients a wide range of finishes suitable for every circumstance. Not every finish is suitable for every stone, and we’re happy to discuss the details – just give us a call. As a broad overview, finishes can be broken into 4 categories:

  • Polished – this is the luxury look you’ll recognise from old films and 5-star hotels. The high gloss look requires the most maintenance, but is very effective.
  • Matt – smooth to the touch without being shiny, this is a popular look for statement worktops, stairs, flooring and tiles.
  • Lightly textured – known by several names, this new finish is popular with quartz worktop manufacturers. It produces a matt and slightly textured result.
  • Rough textured – often popular for outdoor areas and bathrooms as it’s got more texture so less likely to be slippery when wet. This finish is most often used for natural stone flooring rather than worktops.

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