Having an open floor plan is one way to make your office feel more modern and friendly since you are literally taking down walls and letting people see each other more. If this is something you’re considering for your office, it’s good to be aware of how this choice will affect the whole room and to plan your floors and ceilings accordingly. Having floors and ceilings made from the most complementary materials will do wonders for the space.
Commercial Carpeting: the Most Popular Choice
Most offices and plenty of homes use carpeting because it is relatively cheap, easy to install, and readily replaceable if anything goes wrong. It’s also incredibly easy to maintain. This is especially true for commercial carpeting, which refers to the thinner stuff you see in many office buildings. Commercial carpeting is one of the cheaper options available and it works great in places where people are sitting at their desks, or where there isn’t a lot of movement. It also works as a natural sound muffler, helping to keep sounds down on the floor.
Commercial carpeting isn’t ideal for environments with heavy foot traffic or a lot of heavy equipment moving around since it will wear much easier. It’s also not the best at dealing with moisture and water damage. While this doesn’t seem to be a huge issue in Nashville during the summer time, you wouldn’t want to have carpeting in a place with leaky pipes, for example. Additionally, there are nicer, cushier carpets that feel a lot better under your feet, but they are more expensive.
Hardwood Flooring: Hard to Say No
Hardwood flooring is a great option for an open floor space. The wood can handle a lot of foot traffic and things moving around on it, as long as people are being mindful of scuffing and scratching. Although it is partially perception, hardwood flooring takes up less space, and if you choose a darker shade, it will actually make the room appear bigger.
Hardwood flooring is a bit more expensive than carpeting, but it lasts for a longer time, decades beyond what you could reasonably expect from carpeting. This turns the extra cost into an investment.
The major concern with hardwood flooring is related to cleaning since hair and dust particles have nowhere to get trapped (as with carpeting). On the flipside, hardwood flooring is great for anyone with allergies, since pollen and other allergens have nowhere to hide.
Acoustical Ceilings: I Like the Sound of That
Regardless of what kind of flooring you choose, having an acoustic ceiling above is pretty much a necessity. You want one with both sound dampening and absorbing qualities since the ceiling will replace the walls. These ceilings can be made from several different materials, including fiberglass, hardwood, and tin. Each of them have their own ratings and visual appeal, so there is some flexibility. It is important to match the ceiling to the flooring, however. For example, if you have carpeted floors, you don't need a top of the line acoustical ceiling when it comes to sound dampening.
An open floor plan is a great way to maximize available space to make sure you get everything you possibly can out of an open floor plan. Complementing it with the right floors and ceilings will further these goals. If you have any questions about the floors or ceilings in your space, contact the pros at Ozburn-Hessey to make sure you’re getting the best value and quality possible.