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The Pros and Cons of White Wood Flooring

Written by: BuildDirect



Time to read 4 min

One of the most popular goals in designing a home is creating a peaceful retreat to recharge from our busy schedules. White wood flooring makes any size of room seem bright, inviting and calming, especially when paired with furniture in light and natural color tones as well. If you love the look of white wood floors but have hesitations about how they will actually look from day to day, simply evaluating the pros and cons of this flooring color can help you make that final decision.

As with any type of flooring, there are benefits and drawbacks associated with the color white. As you weigh the pros and cons, make sure to take into consideration the way in which your home actually lives. Children, pets, time spent at home and how often you entertain can all be factors in determining whether this flooring suits the needs of your oasis.

White Wood Flooring Options

One of the most popular white flooring options is whitewash wood flooring . The type of natural wood used and the amount of whitewash that is wiped off in the finishing process will help dictate the color in the end. Select a wood floor that is completely white for an elegant appearance or one with a more distressed finish that allows brown undertones to show through for a more casual look.

If natural wood breaks the budget, get the same look by browsing the collection of white wood-look tiles or white luxury vinyl planks. These alternatives to hardwood aren’t just less expensive, they can also be used in wet areas of the home, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms.

Pros of White Plank Flooring

  • · Versatility : White flooring blends seamlessly with a wide range of home design styles, including modern, country, traditional, industrial, transitional, farmhouse, contemporary and shabby chic.
  • · Neutral Backdrop : White plank flooring acts as a perfect backdrop for area rugs and furniture of any color, making it easy to change up the look of your space with a fresh coat of paint, a few new furnishings, or by changing out the area rug.
  • · Clean and Uncluttered : We naturally associate white with a feeling of cleanliness and openness. As such, white plank floors help a space appear uncluttered and clean as soon as you step into the area. This makes it a great choice for homes with a minimalist aesthetic.
  • · Brighter : White naturally reflects light, maximizing the sunlight and artificial light in the room for a brighter and more cheerful space. Keep the rest of the furnishings light and bright to continue the open look white floors bring to a home.

Cons of White Plank Flooring

  • · Frequent Cleaning : Sure, white wood floors look clean, but it does take some work to keep them that way. Every bit of dirt will show so frequent vacuuming and mopping are necessary when you feature white floors. Considering investing in a robotic vacuum that runs daily to help maintain the look of the flooring. Placing area rugs at entryways and choosing white flooring with a little color variation will help conceal dirt for longer.
  • · Glare : When a room has a lot of windows and natural light, pay attention to the tone and the finish of the white flooring. Some high sheen finishes and bright white hues can cause a glare under the light. Select a flooring material with more texture and a slightly warmer shade of white to help reduce this chance.
  • · Shows Wear : Pristine white flooring does get worn over time and the signs are easy to see. Consider starting with a more distressed finish and the wear and tear will not be as evident. Finishing the floor with a heavy-duty sealant with built-in stain protectant will help prevent damage to the planks as well.

White Wood, Not Just for Your Floors

When you love the look of white wood, but you aren’t ready to commit them to your flooring, consider incorporating them in other ways throughout the home.

  • · Feature Ceiling : Covering a ceiling in wood plank flooring can help to make a room appear taller and draw the eye up towards special features, such as a tray ceiling or a dramatic lighting fixture.
  • · Wrap an Island : Make your kitchen island stand out from the rest of your cabinetry by wrapping it in wood planks. The added texture and visual appeal can make an aging island seem brand new again.
  • · Create a Feature Wall : Open-concepts home can feel boring when the same paint color runs throughout a space. Consider choosing a feature wall and installing wood planks that will direct the eye to the wall and break up the surrounding paint color. Wood planks installed vertically make a room appear taller. Install them horizontally and a room appears wider and more spacious.


Take on the installation for yourself as a fun weekend project or call in the professionals and relax as they take care of the installation. Make sure to review the recommended installation instructions of the specific material you select to ensure you have all the proper underlayment supplies and tools. White baseboards help complete the look in monochromatic style. Factor in the installation materials or cost of professional installation when selecting a flooring material that will work within your design budget.

With so many different ways to feature white wood flooring in the home, it is easy to find a material and use that will become a focal point of your home décor. Lay it in a single room or use it behind a gallery wall to call attention to your favorite photos. White wood floors aren’t the only way to make a room appear brighter and bigger, white tile flooring can have the same effect in a bathroom or kitchen. Check out all the available material options to select the one that will elevate the design and function of your space.