Concrete flooring installations are becoming increasingly popular among home owners and interior designers.

In the past, concrete flooring wasn’t a top-of-mind option for residential installations where design, beauty and aesthetics were a priority. Concrete was generally installed in commercial and industrial properties where durability, ease of maintenance and utility were the primary requirements. Today, the concrete solutions offered to the residential market continue to change the game, making this material more and more popular among home owners and interior designers.

“Designers and home-owners are increasingly using decorative concrete floors in residential foyers, for maximum ‘first impressions’ and personalising this area to reflect a home’s overall style. Enhancements for foyer concrete floors include stencilled motifs, multi-colour tile-like patterns, saw-cut designs, or floating concrete islands in shallow pools of water,” says Bryan Perrie, MD of The Concrete Institute.

There are also practical benefits that contribute to the rising popularity of concrete floors in homes. In kitchens, for example, concrete is ideal because it is easy to clean, can be sealed against moisture damage, and be can made virtually impervious to staining agents or food and drink spillage. This flooring option is often installed in bathrooms, because of its moisture resistance qualities.

“Textured techniques can be used to ensure that the surface is slip-resistant even when wet. The various surface finish and colour options available allow for the application of concrete floors in a foyer or hallway that is exceptionally stylish and also functional in these high traffic areas,” says Bryan.

Many home owners are also seeing their garages as more than a storage room for cars, sporting equipment and children’s toys. Nowadays, concrete floors are being used to create garages that form an attractive extension of a home’s living space.

Other benefits of residential concrete flooring include easy maintenance and hygiene benefits.

“When it comes to upkeep, sweeping and damp mopping is usually all that are required, but applying a suitable sealer or a coat of floor finish or wax designed for concrete floors will make the floors more resistant to stains, chemical spillage and abrasion. Floor mats at entrances or in foyers also help lower wear and tear. Concrete floors are also hygienic as they do not trap pet dander that can trigger asthma attacks and adverse reactions in people sensitive to allergens,” says Bryan. In addition, he advises designers and home owners to always opt to partner with skilled artisans when selecting a concrete floor installation for their home.

“Skilled concrete flooring artisans can replicate the appearance of expensive flooring materials such as marble, granite, or top-end wood. The lifetime cost of concrete floors is also low because they require little maintenance and have a lifespan of many decades,” concludes Bryan.

For more information contact The Concrete Institute on +27 (11) 315 0300 or via www.theconcreteinstitute.org.za.