My family has been in the hardwood flooring business for over 30 years and your question is one that arises frequently. Our first recommendation is to have a licensed flooring contractor come out to take a look at the flooring/ sub flooring that is under your carpet. They should be able to do this quite easily and without making a mess of the existing carpet. You want to find out if there is hardwood, whether or not it can simply be sanded, stained and finished and there will be no need to install new wood. The rule is, the smoother the plank, or surface the more obvious scratches and indentations will be. Your options are distressing (ranging from light to heavy) , wire brushing (ranging from light to heavy), or a combination of the two. This can be done to existing wood floors or newly installed hardwood and will help mask or even completely hide any scratches or marks. White Oak flooring is durable and a common choice because of its versatility as far as coloring/staining. White Oak is also one of the lesser expensive hardwoods one can buy. Another important factor in durability is the thickness of the plank the greater the thickness the longer your floors will last through sanding, color changing, etc. I hope this gives you some helpful information so you can make the best decision for your home.
Bamboo, Cork, or Wood Flooring for (Future) Dog Owners? Good Questions
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