If you are looking to make a better first impression on potential buyers or tenants, replacing an old flooring solution can go a long way in doing so. Flooring by nature will see extensive wear and tear during its lifetime and after years of foot traffic the time may come to bring it up to date.

Regardless of which flooring solution you decide to fit, there are certain tips that can help ensure successful installation. These revolve around measuring the flooring area correctly and ensuring that the new solution meets the Building Regulations Approved Document E (2003, with various updates since).

Measuring The Area:

Measuring accurately can often make the difference between a successful and unsuccessful project. If your property was recently put on the market and you have the floor plans at hand, you can use these as a guide. If you do not posses your floor plans or you wish to double check, follow these tips.

Prepare The Essential – To calculate the area correctly, you will need a measuring tape with units of metres, pen and paper. You will also benefit from having a helping hand to re-check your numbers.

Normal Areas – Square and rectangular rooms are the easiest to calculate. Simply measure the length of the room and then the width of the room. Now multiply one by the other to get the required result in units of M2. M2 or Square Meters is a type of area measurement unit in which flooring sellers price their products. If the length of the room is 5m and its width is 6m, the calculation is 5m x 6m to equal 30m².

Unusual Areas – The most common are L shape or odd shape rooms in which the best solution is to measure one small area at a time to then total all the areas together. If room or section of a room came to 20m² and another area came to 15m² the math is simple, just A + B to equal the required flooring material.

Flooring Waste – In any flooring fitting project there is waste that originates from incorrect measurement, cutting around floor fixing and damaged material. To avoid having to stop the fitting mid way, add another 6% to your total m² measurement. If you have any material left, keep it aside as one day you might need to replace a small flooring section and having the original flooring material will help ensure a good fit in terms of colour. This is particularly true in the case of wood flooring in which replacing one board of wood is possible and sometimes needed.

Flooring and Noise – Building Regulations Approved Document E:

The UK has very clear regulations on noise pollution in buildings and their consequences. While it is difficult to enforce the law in detached or even semidetached properties, it is not the case in flats. These regulations cover flooring as well as other sources of noise that may prove an inconvenience to your neighbours.

The solution to reduce noise that originates from flooring that will therefore be heard by the downstairs neighbours is to feet an underlay with acoustic properties. Each underlay will feature amongst its properties two important features, walking noise reduction (in percentage) and impact noise insulation in dB (Decibel). The thickness and materials will make the underlay better or worse in terms of insulation. Quality examples can reduce footsteps by 22db and overall flooring noise pollution by 30%. When laminate, engineered or natural wood flooring are concerned, minimising noise pollution important for the sake of the property’s occupiers not just the downstairs neighbours.

When looking to source new flooring for your property, ensure to measure the area correctly and comply with the Building Regulations Approved Document E.

Information by Jonathan Sapir. Jonathan is the MD at Wood and Beyond London based oak flooring supplier working with residential and commercial property owners.