Basements have a tendency not to be the most celebrated of spaces in the household. Even the definition—“a tale of a building, partly or wholly underground”—is decidedly drab. Frequently comprising cavelike laundry rooms, pretty worthless fifty percent baths, a lot more cozy than stylish spouse and children lounge locations, and the occasionally creepy storage place (why is there generally a drain?), your home’s subterranean sq. footage could probably use a small appreciate.

Given that a basement renovation is no easy job, it can make sense to commence with a kind-meets-purpose alternative and update your basement flooring. Products for a basement ground project should really be hardy, water-resistant, and built to stand the check of time. Mark Cutler, cofounder of CutlerSchulze, a luxurious inside design and style agency in Los Angeles, shares that “durability, simplicity of cleaning, moisture resistance, and at minimum some degree of seem mitigation” are the most critical aspects for identifying the most effective basement flooring selections.

There’s considerably to wade through concerning supplies, but fear not, as we have tapped a few veteran designers to find their preferred basement floor tips. These approachable (but nonetheless aesthetically satisfying) flooring materials range from the normal suspects to the unforeseen (cork? what?) and every thing in in between. Read through on to see what interior designers recommend for sorts of basement flooring.


Right before you choose your basement flooring, take into account how you’ll be using your house, advises Dallas-centered inside designer Jean Liu. If you’re working with the house principally for storage, the ELLE DECOR A-Lister implies an epoxy surface. “I like the idea of finishing the floors with epoxy the way a garage flooring would be concluded,” she claims. “It’s a great way to update it from becoming plain concrete when nevertheless currently being in a position to endure the features and situations that go alongside with currently being an underground space.”


In accordance to Cutler, a veteran designer with a lot more than two a long time of practical experience, cork is another superior pick for basement flooring. “It’s straightforward to clean up, not primarily expensive, and it comes in a multitude of colours,” the style professional shares. “There is a diploma of retro chic that goes alongside with this, so if you are seeking for a bit of a Brady Bunch vibe, no matter if in an ironic way or not, this is the alternative for you.” As a bonus, cork floors are resilient, low servicing, and normally drinking water- and rot-resistant, generating them a primary decide on for a basement flooring.

foyer and stairs

Cork tiles form a checkerboard sample in the Brooklyn dwelling of Calico Wallpaper founders Rachel and Nicholas Cope.
Nicole Franzen

Porcelain Tile

In phrases of common or standby alternatives for basement floors, tile has been a longtime go-to. Cutler prefers porcelain tile because it’s quick to clear, tough, and water-resistant. “Many providers now make pieces nearly the sizing of slabs. I really like to use these, primarily in far more modern spaces in which the much larger structure reads far more modern,” he claims. This will allow for a natural stone search without having the selling price tag and the upkeep. “I try out to continue to be away from normal stone tile in a basement. I come across that it can be difficult to clean up, and the extra thickness can at times be an concern,” Cutler provides.


Belinda Pabian, the Omaha, Nebraska–based founder of Belinda Pabian Inside Decorating and Styling, gravitates toward slate as a basement flooring choice. Slate is a person of the strongest natural stone flooring resources and is resistant to cracks and chipping, generating it ideal for very trafficked places. She further elaborates, “Given the character of basements, I favor purely natural fibers and stones to carry warmth and ease and comfort to a house, [and] I really like the idea of a slate ground.” Relying on where by her clients’ residence is situated, the designer will often counsel introducing a heating element under the slate for an more layer of comfort in a sometimes chilly basement space. She also enjoys it considering the fact that it is a wonderful foundation layer for including rugs, like a tough wool creation.

living room with sliding glass doors and love seat and matching chair at left, fireplace with bookshelves above left and right, leather couch at right with green artwork on wall above it

Slate tiles protect the floors of gallery proprietor Alex Logsdail’s Hamptons household.
Ori Harpaz

Vinyl Wood Flooring

Yet another exceptional way to end a basement is to take into consideration utilizing vinyl wooden flooring planks. “This provides the visual appearance of a finished hardwood ground, but the PVC composition of the flooring would make it impervious to h2o,” explains interior designer Liu. Vinyl wood flooring arrives in a variety of shades, styles, and patterns, building it a fantastic choice for any basement design.

Laminated Wood Flooring

Cutler, for his aspect, prefers a laminated wooden floor. He expands: “If you’re seeking for one thing that is a little bit additional exquisite, a wood plank flooring could be just the matter. Applying a laminated wooden product will provide extra steadiness against dampness and give you a product or service that is substantially extra likely to triumph in a basement setting.” The designer implies normally working with a dampness barrier beneath to enhance longevity.


Cutler also enjoys terrazzo for a basement flooring answer. He describes: “It has the considerable gain of coming as a tile or can be produced on-site. Though this solution is more expensive, it gives a incredibly clean up and personalized look.” A resurgent retro trend, “terrazzo is primarily a concrete with a coloured additive, normally glass, so you can tweak the blend to no matter what shade you want, which can offer a excellent dialogue piece,” the design pro adds.

long white walkway with art on the walls and two adorable fluffy puppies in the middle taking a stroll toward the viewer

Terrazzo paves the flooring in the home of designer Caroline Rafferty.
Carmel Brantley


Linoleum can be an excellent preference for basement flooring. According to Cutler, “This is an additional retro favorite, but as much as I am anxious, it has under no circumstances gone out of design and style.” The designer points to its composition, a green material, produced of cork and linseed oil, as a different perk. Over and above that sustainability angle, linoleum will come in a vast range of colors and designs, which offers it the supreme versatility. “I like to use it off the roll rather than tile, as I like clear, unobstructed styles, but both way, it is an superb preference for a basement undertaking,” he suggests.

blue kitchen

Linoleum floors get a chic update in this prewar apartment made by David Netto.
Francesco Lagnese

Extra Things to consider

Though these basement flooring products get the job done as stellar decorating alternatives when refurbishing or finishing a basement, just don’t forget that planning is almost everything. “The basement, much more than any other space in your home, is issue to stress. This can be from h2o, temperature adjust, etcetera, so building guaranteed that you pay back lots of awareness to prep will conserve you time and cash later on,” Cutler states. Before you start out, he advises, make confident to examine your floor for cracks, levelness, and telltale signs of drinking water seepage, like calcium deposits. You are going to also want to apply a waterproof seal before you start off to put in your flooring. “This will give you peace of mind and a floor that will previous,” he describes. “While it is tempting to skimp on some of the matters you never see when preparing the floor, it is completely penny-wise and pound foolish.”