How to Prepare for New Flooring Installation | Plus Free Checklist to Get Your Home Ready for New Flooring

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If you are a home owner, there will most likely come a time in the life of your home when you will need to replace or refinish the flooring.

Maybe your dog chewed a hole in your carpet and you need to replace it.

How to prepare your home for new flooring

Perhaps the hardwood flooring is scratched and needs to be sanded and refinished so that it looks ‘new’ again.

Or you want to finally change out the old linoleum for some fun tile.

Faux Wood Tile Flooring

Whatever your reasons, updating flooring in your home is an inevitable part of home ownership.

So, how do you get your home ready for new flooring?

There are a few things you can do to prepare for new flooring in your home that will make the whole experience better.

How To Prepare for New Flooring Installation

1. Plan Your Flooring

Spend time ahead, deciding what flooring you want to install. It is very important to do some research before you pick your flooring.

There are so many different options available, so picking the right flooring can take a little time.

(If you are considering engineered hardwood, take a look at these engineered hardwood floor purchase tips)

Engineered hardwood floor with glass door

Once you know what flooring you will use, decide whether you will hire it out, or install it yourself.

Many flooring companies will do the measuring for you, so if you go that route, check to see what is included with the installation price.

If you plan to do your own flooring you will need to measure your space. Make sure to buy extra flooring and have all of your materials ready so that you know you have enough to work with in case you make a mistake. You don’t want to run out of material in the middle of your flooring installation.

2. Prepare the Room for New Flooring

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  • Declutter: Now is the time to go through the room and see if there is anything you can get rid of. Put things away that don’t belong in the space and weed out anything that you no longer use, love, or need.
  • Empty Room: Empty any furniture or items that are on the floor from the room so that it is easier to remove the old flooring and install the new one. As the old floor is removed, there will inevitably be some dust that its kicked up, so empty anything from the room that is difficult to clean. This is especially important if you are planning to sand hardwood floors. In this case, removing everything from the room is ideal as the sanding process is messy.
  • Paint: If you are wanting to change the color of the room, paint the walls before the new flooring is installed. That way you don’t have to worry about making a mess on your new floor.
  • Cover What You Can’t Move: Tape off and cover with plastic sheeting anything that can’t be moved and that you don’t want dust in. (ex. windows, outlets, doors, heat vents, etc. The type of flooring you are installing will determine how much effort you spend on this. For example, preparing your house for floor sanding and refinishing of your hardwood flooring may take a little more effort. You will be very happy if you spend the extra time covering things as the refinishing process can be messy.

3. Prepare Other Areas of the House

  • Protect Other Flooring and Furniture: Be sure to cover any walk ways or flooring you are not replacing to keep it from getting scratched or dirty. Tape rosin paper on hard floors with painter’s tape. Cover any carpeted areas with plastic sheeting to keep dust and dirt out. If you are having your floors sanded, cover any furniture and tape off any doorways of rooms that will not be worked on to help reduce the dust.
  • Prepare a Safe Area for Pets and Small Children: If you have small children or pets, it’s important to block them off from the work area. Dust kicked up from the installation process and the tools and equipment used to install flooring are not safe for curious pets or little ones. Keeping them in a safe area is crucial.

4. Install or Refinish Flooring

Complete the flooring install or refinishing.

5. Clean While the Room Is Empty

Grey carpet next to windows

Before you move everything in, do a thorough cleaning.

  • Wipe down the walls and trim
  • Wash windows and window trim
  • Clean off light fixtures and switches
  • Do a thorough cleaning out of vents
  • Wipe down shelves and any other built-ins
  • Dust doors and door handles.
  • Touch up any paint on walls or trim

6. Move Back Into the Room

Now that your room is clean and your new flooring is installed, it’s time to move everything back in.

Start by moving large furniture back into the room. Then add the smaller pieces.

Use this time to declutter even more. Make sure what you are putting back in fits the ‘new’ space you just created.

Need help remember all of these steps? Sign up for my newsletter below and get the bonus New Flooring Prep Home Checklist to help you get ready.

A Little Prep Makes Flooring Installation Easier

Taking the time to prepare for new flooring in your home can make the whole process easier.

Though it does require a little planning, taking extra time to cover things and tape off areas in your home can help minimize dust and keep clean up more manageable.

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Get your home ready for new flooring plus checklist to help you prepare

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