Floors (solid and suspended flooring)

There are, broadly, two common types of Flooring:

  • suspended Floors, and 
  • solid Floors

A suspended Floor is a specialist construction made of a solid concrete Floor, a system of sleeper walls and timber joists, upon which sits a supported timber floor. This type of floor allows home owners to run electrical wires and other such elements under the floor boards.

Because the Floor is suspended above the ground, it should absorb less moisture than a solid floor. However, it is important to note that the cavity between the concrete slab and the timber floor needs to be ventilated well or dry rot may occur.

A solid Floor is much simpler and cheaper. It consists of solid concrete built into the ground. One advantage is that it can hold more weight than a suspended Floor. Another is that it provides no cavity in which animals may make a home.

The biggest factor weighing against this type of Flooring is that, by being in direct contact with the ground, it will absorb the Earth's moisture. This could lead to all sorts of structural damage.

Should I choose a solid floor or suspended Floor?

When choosing a Floor construction for your new home or extension, consult a builder or, ideally, a Surveyor for an impartial opinion. The size or nature of the structure you intend to build may limit the choice of floor type.

As above, each type has both positive and negative aspects to consider. Although the solid Floor option is generally cheaper, in order to prevent moisture seeping into walls, and thus additional costs in years to come, it is strongly advised that if a solid floor is constructed, professional-quality damp-proofing be also installed.