Flooring retailers are constantly on the lookout for the "Next Big Thing" in carpet, sheet vinyl, laminate and hand-scraped hardwood. According to recent research, that may very well be the "Next Big Green Thing."
According to the American Institute of Architects' Home Design Trend Survey of 500 firms concentrating on residential architecture, "The demand for sustainable materials and solutions continues to rise." 51% of firms indicated that their clients would pay more for renewable flooring. The flooring industry has several options that fit this category, but few have the unique combination of features and benefits of cork flooring. Cork is the only flooring surface that performs like hard-surface flooring AND has the warmth and comfort of soft-surface flooring. And, cork is one of the most renewable and sustainable floor coverings available today.
According to the World Floor Covering Association, while the popularity of recycled flooring is growing, it still isn't something the majority of consumers seek. Most people, according to the WFCA, are looking for style and a specific price point. The decision to go green isn't necessarily the ultimate goal, but it can be a deal-closer.
In fact, consumers are often surprised to learn that the floors they love are made from recycled products. Green floors are constructed of a variety of seemingly odd materials like old wine corks, silk from second-hand saris, recycled ceramics, leather car seat scraps, and recycled soda bottles to name a few.
But, that element of surprise is endearing consumers to the idea of going green for good.