How to Choose the Best Flooring for a Bathroom

When embarking on a bathroom renovation, one crucial decision is selecting the right flooring for a bathroom. The choice of flooring for a bathroom is not just about aesthetics; it plays a pivotal role in the functionality and overall ambiance of your personal sanctuary.

In this comprehensive guide, we delve into the myriad of options available, helping you navigate the overwhelming market of flooring for a bathroom. From the enduring charm of ceramic tiles to the rustic appeal of natural stone, and the innovative waterproof solutions, we explore what suits your style, ensures longevity, and meets your safety and comfort needs.

We also consider factors like maintenance, budget constraints, installation complexities, and the impact on resale value. Whether you’re looking for a luxurious spa-like retreat or a practical, easy-to-clean surface, our insights will equip you with the knowledge to make an informed choice that aligns with your vision and lifestyle. Let’s dive into the world of bathroom flooring and discover the ideal foundation for your bathroom oasis.

Choosing a replacement bathroom floor can be a tricky undertaking. The amount of products on the market will overwhelm you. 

Related: The Best Kitchen Flooring Options For Your Home

Here at GreatBuildz, a free service that connects homeowners in Los Angeles, Orange County, Ventura, and San Diego with reliable bathroom remodeling contractors, we speak to homeowners every day about choosing the right materials for their remodel – Use these tips to know what to look for and logically compare what you like.

Put a Premium on Style When Selecting Flooring For a Bathroom

Ceramic sink with large format tile flooring

When selecting the best flooring for bathrooms, consider that floor design is a deeply personal choice, so it must aesthetically suit your taste. Having said that, avoid picking a product with tunnel vision. Deciding on a design that goes against the rest of the space will make it feel out of place. It will ruin the serenity of your home’s oasis. Flooring tends to have heavy visual weight, so it will be challenging to mask or downplay if it’s an eyesore.

Ensure your floor’s appearance coexists with your bathroom’s other design elements. Draw inspiration from the aesthetics of various architectural styles. It’s better than relying on your instincts to nail what works.

Neutral colors are emblematic of contemporary homes. Simple geometry and exaggerated patterns are hallmarks of Art Deco baths. Farmhouse architecture emphasizes warmth and nature. Handcrafted and locally sourced materials are quintessential Craftsman bathroom elements.

When it comes to space, your bath’s square footage matters. Intricate decor can make a tiny bathroom feel cramped, while a characterless floor can make a large one seem empty.

Think About Longevity

review page Magnolia bathroom renovation

Durable bathroom flooring is a long-term investment, meaning you won’t need to replace it frequently. It should last for decades without sustaining significant damage throughout its service life. 

However, lasting forever is a tough ask. Floors take a beating no matter the room, but the bath presents worse conditions. High moisture levels can shorten the lives of traditionally durable construction materials.

Every floor option reacts to humidity differently. Hardwood absorbs water because it’s porous and deforms and rots over time. Linoleums and carpets have seams that might expose the substrate to dampness.

On the other end of the spectrum, masonry is practically waterproof — it’s no wonder marble, granite, ceramic, porcelain, and concrete are popular bathroom floor options.

Mull Over Safety

Bathroom Remodel with Soaking Tub

When considering flooring for a bathroom, prioritize non-slip bathroom flooring options to reduce slipping hazards because they inevitably get wet. Materials with glossy surfaces are slippery even when slightly damp. You must wipe them immediately or else you risk getting injured when traversing them.

Slipperiness is a drawback of masonry bathroom floor options. Natural stone typically offers little grip, so you’ll lose traction when walking over water puddles on ceramic or porcelain. Bare feet or slippers have minimal friction on concrete with a hard trowel finish.

Non-masonry materials like hardwood, laminate, bamboo and vinyl can also be slippery. That’s why it’s recommended to include bath mats with non-slip bottoms to soak up excess water and prevent slips.

Aside from slips and falls, mold growth is another safety concern. Porous materials allow mold spores to take cover. The synthetic fibers of carpets are moisture-absorbent, so they’re a common breeding ground for this fungus.

Conversely, non-porous floor options resist moisture and help keep mold colonies under control. Many professionals recommend ceramic and vinyl tiles to dry bathrooms faster.

Consider Comfort

Bathroom with double vanity and cozy bathtub

The comfort of your bathroom flooring is paramount; nobody likes stepping on a cold floor after a bath. Underfloor radiant heating is a remedy for chilly flooring, but this technology is only compatible with certain materials.

The best floor options for radiant heating withstand temperature changes without cracking or warping and are thermally conductive. Natural stone fits the bill.

Mind Maintenance

Close up of worn bathroom flooring

Choosing easy-to-clean bathroom floors can make maintenance less demanding. It has to remain spotless to appear inviting and hygienic. That’s why ease of maintenance is an essential factor when choosing a material.

Flooring solutions have various maintenance needs. Some hide dirt well, while others take a long time to dry. Specific products decay after succumbing to fungi growth. Some may discolor after coming into contact with an acidic cleaner. Masonry is enduring but requires regular grout re-application to seal its gaps.

Choosing a durable, low-maintenance material is half the battle. It doesn’t clean itself, but it can preserve its original condition with little effort on your part.

Reflect on Your Budget

Bathroom remodel budget with iphone calculator

Your choice of flooring for a bathroom should also reflect your budget. The market has abundant products at various price points, so it’s easy to find one you can afford.

Despite this, skimping on the material can backfire on you. The bathroom floor is one of the parts of your house worth splurging on. You’ll get a lot of mileage from it, and it will transform your home for the better in multiple ways. Go beyond the bare minimum of what your money can buy to avoid regret.

In addition to materials and labor, budget for a building permit since bathroom floor renovation is a structural change.

Set aside cash for contingencies, too. Anticipate encountering unknown challenges that can stall the project. Many pros suggest allocating 10% of your budget for unplanned costs to minimize delay.

Ponder Installation

Installation materials for bathroom remodel

When installing new flooring for a bathroom, consider the complexity of installation for different materials. The more strenuous their installation is, the more expensive and disruptive they are.

Installation complexity must be high on your agenda if you have a limited budget or are short on time. No matter your budget, hiring an experienced bathroom contractor who will finish the job quickly and reliably is your best option. Seasoned bathroom floor installers may charge a premium, but you’ll get what you pay for.

Contemplate Resale Value

budgeting to move out during renovation

While personal preference is key, also consider the impact of your flooring for a bathroom choice on the home’s resale value. Your bathroom floor’s popularity determines how much money you can recoup when you sell your house.

Research which flooring materials others will pay a premium for. What’s hot now can go out of fashion tomorrow. Pay attention to trends to know which ones are likely to stay sought-after in the future.

The Best Bathroom Floor Is Imperfect

Rustic bathtub in open concept bathroom

While no flooring for a bathroom is perfect, weighing your options carefully will lead you to the best choice for your home. Each product has its flaws. Instead, explore your options, understand them deeply, and use these tips to select the one that makes sense for your home.

Selecting the ideal flooring for a bathroom is a balance of style, functionality, and practicality. Whether you prioritize longevity, safety, comfort, or maintenance, each aspect contributes to creating a space that’s both personal and harmonious with your home’s overall design.

Remember, your choice in flooring for a bathroom can significantly impact not just the aesthetics but also the safety, durability, and resale value of your home. Armed with these insights and tips, you’re now better equipped to navigate the myriad of options available, ensuring your bathroom not only looks stunning but also meets your specific needs and preferences.

Let your bathroom transformation begin with a foundation that’s as beautiful as it is practical.

If you’ve been searching for a reputable flooring contractor serving Los Angeles, Orange, or Ventura counties, GreatBuildz is here to help. Our free service will connect you with several trustworthy flooring contractors who are ready to take on your project. Give us a call at 818.317.3567 to get started today.



Rose Morrison is a home & construction writer from Pittsburgh, PA. She’s the managing editor of Renovated, a web magazine for the real estate industry. She’s most interested in sharing home projects and inspiration for the most novice of DIY-ers, values she developed growing up in a family of contractors.

Hi, we're Paul and Jon - Co-Founders of GreatBuildz. We believe everyone deserves to find a great contractor, have a stress-free renovation, and enjoy their beautiful new space. There are so many contractors out there and it's often hard to tell the good from the bad... until it's too late. We started our company to help simplify your contractor search and help you have a stress-free renovation experience. We're always available to help, no matter where you are in the process. Click here to learn more about our story.

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