Editors' Picks: Choosing Flooring

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Our editors highlight new and classic articles, along with favorite products and current bookstore sales. This week, get a leg up on old-house floors.

English encaustic tiles, here in a New York City brownstone vestibule. (Photo: Alan Weintraub)

English encaustic tiles, here in a New York City brownstone vestibule. (Photo: Alan Weintraub)

There's no denying that flooring is essential to the allure of old houses. In contrast to the bland beige carpeting that often blankets new construction, the well-loved hardwood, tile, and linoleum floors of vintage homes hint at the thousands of footsteps that have trod their surfaces over the years. On the downside, all that wear and tear can make old-house floors a top-of-the-list maintenance item.

Whether you need to refinish your home's original floors or start from scratch to correct a previous owner's remuddle, these three articles will get you off on the right foot.

Flooring Options for Period Homes: The flooring you choose sets the style, period, and tone for the room.

Resilient Floors for Old Houses: Resilient flooring is a historically accurate way to go green underfoot in your old-house restoration, and it's back in style again.

A Clearer View of Floor Finishes: Once you understand the pros and cons of traditional methods and modern products, it’s easier to balance history and practicality.