Home Selling in San Jose>Question Details

Home Owner, Home Owner in San Jose, CA

Bamboo vs laminate?

Asked by Home Owner, San Jose, CA Mon Jan 16, 2012

I want to replace the existing carpet with laminate or bamboo flooring, but I am not sure which will be better in terms of increasing my home's value. It's a relatively mid sized home (less than 2000sqft). Any advice?

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If you're interested in resale, bamboo will have more appeal in the marketing of your home. Similar to the response when you see 'granite kitchen' in an adv as opposed to laminate or even corian counters. If you're going to sell in the near future, this is what will help you get it sold.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Bamboo is more luxurious and definitely adds more value to the house increasing the price of the home when you sell it even though initially it might be more expensive than laminate.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 19, 2014
The best kept secret in the industry is (hush hush) the more expensive flooring you put in, the more value it will add. Deh.

If you are changing flooring before selling, your priority is to provide a package with compatible components. The idea is that most components are in a similar grade. For example, you do not want to have expensive counter-top that goes with cheap cabinets. In addition, the upgrade you make should be consistent with the value of your home. It is perfectly fine to have laminate flooring for houses under $200K, but probably not a good idea (with the exception of some high end laminate) for houses above $400K. People who move from an apartment would have much less objection to laminate than people who have hardwood floor now.

Since your 2000 sqft house is in San Jose, I believe that it is way above the pricing range for laminate. Bamboo is definitely worth the price difference. If you shop around, you may even find decent engineered wood floor or hardwood floor deals during clearance sale. I was able to purchase beautiful mahogany engineered wood flooring from Home Depot for less than $2 a sqft when they cleared it out a year ago. With some luck, patience, and diligent searching, you may also find a deal.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 21, 2013
Normally Bamboo shows much better than laminate. Also you may be able to refinish the bamboo in the future if needed. Some laminates can't be refinished. They do make some great laminates now that have similar properties as bamboo or hardwoods. They have come a long way from first inception. I would look at as many as possible, and your decision will be clear.

All the best,
Gary Geer
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 20, 2012

Laminate will give it a cheap feel, now of course it all comes down to
your financial situation, values of neighboring homes and area.

Bamboo will be a better choice, if you want to stay a few years enjoy it and then



Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 20, 2012
Bamboo, a hundred times over. It is a very durable material and is seen much more favorably than laminate.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 17, 2012
If anyone has ever spent some real time on a bamboo or cork floor there would be no question.
Unfortunately, this attribute will be hard to convey to a new homeowner until AFTER they spend some quality time enjoying the comfort of such floor coverings.

The answer to your question is, "WHAT DO YOU WANT?" Improve your home so you can enjoy it to the fullest extent possible. Floor covering is just that, floor covering. It gets replaced on a consistent basis. Your only concern, when selling is, "Does the existing flooring DETRACT from my homes appeal?"

If you are selling your home tomorrow, examine the floor covering of homes already sold. This will reflect what is appealing to active buyers in your area.

Best of success in selling your home,
Annette Lawrence
ReMax Realtec Group
727. 420. 4041
Web Reference: http://www.MyDunedin.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 17, 2012
Installing bamboo flooring would increase the value of your home, but not as much as if you installed hardwood flooring. Although bamboo flooring is gaining popularity, people aren't as familiar with it and don’t attach as much value to it as they do hardwood. Laminate floors are an economical choice when you have to replace carpets, and will make your home look better, but won’t increase its value.

My advice would be to find a professional home stager in your area to guide you; they stay on top of popular decorating trends, and often have relationships with flooring retailers, so they can recommend options you may not have thought of that would be ideal for your home now, and will add value when you're ready to sell.

Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 17, 2012

There's a lot more to this question than simply hardwood versus bamboo, engineered versus bamboo, laminate versus bamboo, hardwood versus tile...

Although we can all say: hardwood is better than engineered flooring; bamboo is better than laminate; light colors trump dark colors; arches in your home would be funny unless the home architecturally supports such improvements--truth is, without knowing a lot about your home, the information we're giving you can be wrong (really really wrong).

For example, if you have a $700,000 home in San Jose and are looking to add arches, engineered floors and any myriad of other things to your home, depending on where it's located and the comparable sales values in the area, the money may go all for nothing. When selling, you want a home that is comparable to the others in the neighborhood--not the best looking one on the block. While the best looking one will sell fast, it won't sell for more. So that $40-$50-$60K you spent to make it the best looking home is simply not going to get any traction in pricing.

Siimilarly, if you're not trying to sell, and your window for selling is 5-7 years away, then you want to go with the STAPLES for home improvement, the durables that through time and over years have shown they last and are desired by homeowners. This would be wood cabinets (not press board) or European metal stuff or white country, and hardwood floors (not Pergo or Bruce or laminates). Less permanent fixtures, items like carpeting and paint, can be whatever color and design you want. If you want to sell, however, you'll stick with muted colors.

I think we can all agree that our advice to you would be very different if this were, say a condominium with a price tag of $300,000. In that case, go with the laminates. If this is a custom home in the hills of San Jose, you want nothing but the hardwood, and here, dark colors are the rule not the exception. So as you can see, the type of home, the location of the home, the comparables, what you're planning to do to the home and how long you want to live it, matter GREATLY on what you should do.

So if you really want to maximize your housing dollar, you'll need to get specific with a professional who can assist you. Again, if your goals are to sell, then talk with a Realtor. If your goal is to keep the home and live in it for a while, again, you can talk with your Realtor (the one who sold you this home) and also an interior decorator for assistance. Don't be afraid to call your Realtor or any of the Realtors here on Trulia--we're all service people and helping our clients is part of the job.

Grace Morioka
Area Pro Realty-People's Choice
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
So, what about bamboo vs engineered wood flooring? It seems like people do not recommend laminate at all if I want to sell my home in the future. But it seems like bamboo is less durable than engineered wood.
Thank you for the advice thus far.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Go with any type of hardwood over laminate. Hardwood comes in different grades (#1, #2, #3) and range from inexpensive to expensive. Laminate floors do not look as elegant as hardwood and buyers can tell the difference. FYI...Bamboo can not be used in areas where there is moisture (kithens, bathrooms)because it is derived from a plant and is more sussceptible to scratches, dents and warping. Verify with a flooring specialist.
Web Reference: http://ninaharrishomes.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
bamboo.........bamboo........bamboo..............or a less expensive hardwood, but not laminate
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Hi Home88 and thanks for your post.

To be frank, if you're looking to sell, then your best bet is to work with an agent, rather than to make a lot of changes (possibly expensive changes) to your home that will be unlikely to provide you with the benefit you seek when you sell your home. Depending on where you're located, a good Realtor will advise you on what changes ae likely to get the most attention from buyers and result in the best price for your home.

If you're looking only to update your home, then my suggestion is to work with an interior designer to create a uniform updated appearance in your home. As far as bamboo or laminate or hardwood is concerned or even rug versus hard flooring, buy what suits YOU best. Unless you're planning to sell this summer (in which case I refer you back to my earlier comments), architectural styles and preferences come and go as do all "fashion". Thankfully, the rate at which things change in the housing market is slower, but it does, in fact change. It was not too long ago that dark woods were all the "rage" for flooring and cabinets, and now that's not en vogue as people opt for lighter wood tones. Similarly, laminate was big a few years ago, and bamboo is currently the desired product. Styles change and nothing "dates" your home faster than to purchase and install items that don't have a long "shelf life" stylistically. Again, the best course of action is to work with a designer to make a cohesive, long lived, upgrade to your home.

And, again, if you're doing this to increase the value or saleability of your home, please consult your local trusted Realtor. It makes sense to have professional help to prepare and show your home, so it's a good idea to avail yourself of the free resource.

Good luck!!

Grace Morioka
Area Pro Realty-People's Choice
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Hello Home88,
I believe that a home buyer would prefer bamboo flooring if they were informed about it's features and benefits over laminate.

I had a condo listing that had bamboo floors and many of the prospective buyers remarked how nice they were. I don't always hear that about laminate floors.

Good luck with your decision!

Laura Feghali
Prudential Connecticut Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
So, would a home buyer prefer bamboo over laminate flooring?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Hello Home88,
Bamboo is an excellent choice for flooring. Although it is a grass and not a hardwood; it is very durable, hard, and fire resistant. It comes pre-finished so no need to sand the floors.

Here is a link for more information about bamboo flooring:


Hope this is helpful in making your decision.

Laura Feghali
Prudential Connecticut Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Dear Home 88:

There are many grades of laminate in many hues and in many types of wood imitations, including bamboo. Laminate is easier to clean and maintain. All that said, the real question is which will look better in your home? As far as the cushion under you feet and any squeaky sound, that has to do with which underlayment you use and the skill of the installer. I suggest you give Bittick's a call. I've used them several times rehabilitating homes. They can explain all your options and prices for same. Please let them know I recommended you. Their phone number is 408-266-0383.

Mitchell Pearce
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Bamboo, it is very tough and holds up very well plus it looks good too.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
Hi, Bamboo is a great choice, it's very strong, durable and not pricey! It also looks alot better and doesn't have that hollow cardboard sound when you walk on it.

0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 16, 2012
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