Office Buildings: Commonly Used Floor Finishing

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Office Building Flooring Statistics

Insights on the flooring finish in office buildings include the different floors recommended for lobby, office, conference rooms and kitchens in the building. Design trends include differently shaped flooring and customized digital designs. Sales statistics show a huge increase in resilient flooring.

Types of Rooms

There are four types of rooms to consider when selecting flooring materials.

Lobby and reception areas

  • In this location, design and durability are key factors when selecting flooring material. It should make a good impression while also withstand significant foot traffic.
  • A few materials that are aesthetically pleasing and durable enough to be used in a lobby are terrazzo, wood finishes and luxury vinyl tile (LVT)

Open office spaces and break rooms

Conference rooms

Kitchen areas

Design Trends

  • New technology has resulted in more choices than ever before for flooring, including shapes and graphic designs.


  • There is a large movement away from the traditional 12"x12" square tiles.
  • New options include hexagonal tiles, both in carpeting and resilient flooring, rectangular tiles and even planks available in LVT and other resilient flooring options

Digital Graphic Applications


  • In 2007, the average price per square foot for resilient flooring was $0.64. In 2017, it was $1.04. Last year it was $1.14.
  • Ten years ago, sheet vinyl, vinyl composition tile (VCT) and peel-and-stick tile made up 75% of the sales. By 2018, that number was down to 22.5%, down from 28.8% in 2017.
  • The increased usage of the higher-cost LVT, both residentially and commercially, and now WPC/SPC/rigid, have been industry game changers.

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Office Building Flooring Best Practices

There are three best practices used when choosing the type of floor finishing: calculating the total cost of ownership, using a "Choosing by Advantage Decision-Making System," and making choices that will allow the project to be certified sustainable.

Total Cost of Ownership

  • Not only does flooring in an office building have to look good, but it also has to stand up to an enormous amount of traffic, resulting in wear and tear.
  • Because of its visual significance and the amount of product needed, flooring is often a major expense. When selecting flooring in an office building, the total cost over the life cycle of the floor should be calculated before a decision is made.
  • The challenge for facilities executives is that laying the flooring is near the end of the building process. If the project is running over budget, it is tempting to cut costs by selecting the least expensive flooring.
  • Lifestyle costs include the initial cost of the flooring, the cost of installation, the cost of maintenance over the expected life of the flooring, and the removal and disposal costs.
  • Once the total cost has been calculated, it is divided by the number of years the flooring is expected to last, which gives the total cost per year.
  • If required, the cost per square foot can also be calculated.
  • Options should then be compared and selected based on the total cost.

Advantage Decision-making System

  • Organizations like government, engineering, architecture, and construction firms occasionally use "The Choosing By Advantages (CBA) Decision-Making System" to make decisions.
  • The purpose of CBA is to assist decision-makers understand the differences in the alternatives and to understand the importance and the implications of those differences. CBA analysis is based on the advantages of options, not the disadvantages. This ensures no double counting.
  • Step-by-step instructions can be found here.


  • Two green trends are part of sustainable flooring: sustainability evaluation systems and new green materials. While LEED certification has been the standard, the new LEED v4 requirements are much more stringent, making it difficult to get materials certified.
  • One of the most widely used new systems is Green Globes. The Green Globe system focuses on energy-efficiency savings and a sustainability return on investment (SROI).
  • A full outline of the certification system is available here.