Choosing tiles can be difficult, especially if you’re planning on spending a lot of money. Here are some top tips to help you choose the best tiles for the job.
So you are renovating your kitchen or bathroom, or maybe the flooring in your hall or conservatory? And now you are looking for the perfect tile to complement your re-design. But this is probably the toughest choice; which tiles to select?
The huge selection of ceramic tiles, porcelain tiles and natural stone on the market can be confusing; there is just so much choice, so it can be hard to know where to invest your money. Fortunately we have some helpful advice tips to ensure you choose the right tiles for your home.
You may feel overwhelmed with advice from staff in the tile shops you visit, but do listen to what they are saying. They see hundreds of different tiles and tile installations and knows what looks good in-situ rather than just in a box. They can also suggest things you haven’t thought of before that may be perfect. So look and listen with an open mind.
Visit several showrooms and pick up samples of anything that catches you eye. Reputable retailers should always give you helpful and correct information about any tile because they have a reputation to uphold and because incorrect tiles used for particular applications can actually be dangerous. For instance tiles not intended for the floor because of their non-slip surface could cause a nasty accident. A good retailer always wants the customer to be happy with their choice so trust their advice.
Before you start shopping and fall in love with tiles that may be unsuitable for the area you want to install them in, consider issues like the amount of wear they will get (if, for example, they are being laid in a hallway). Think about their size and shape if you have lots of awkward corners to tile around. Small, awkward spaces may benefit from small or mosaic tiles. And don’t forget safety when tiling a floor that may often be wet such as in a wet room.
When tiles are installed they can look very different in the lighting in your home than they do in a showroom. Instead think about colours that will complement whatever is already there. Sanitary ware or kitchen units; furniture or painted walls. Trying to match a colour exactly will almost always fail; even if you have a colour scanned to get a match the different materials and reflective properties will affect the end result.
We all love a bargain but good quality tiles will last for years so it’s always best to focus on the quality rather than just on cost. You will never find the perfect tile if all you worry about is the cost. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t set yourself a budget (and stick to it) but it does mean focussing on more than just the cost. In a year’s time the difference in cost between 2 tiles may seem insignificant but you will have to live with the poorer quality or slightly wrong look for many more years to come.
Because tiles are so long lasting, unlike many other items in the home, treat them as an investment buy which will add value to your home.
Think very carefully before you decide to install tiles yourself unless you already have some experience doing so. They are probably one of the areas of DIY that will show up poor workmanship more than any other. If you are in any doubt about your skills then employ a professional tiler and get it done right.