Friday, 14 February 2014

Q & A - Flooring

Good Morning,

things are moving along nicely at the 'house', I promise I'll get some photo's soon.  My husband was on site this morning with our SS, hopefully he snapped some pics.  In the meantime I thought I would take this opportunity to answer a question I received on my blog.


I was asked:

"Hi Betsy, let me just start by saying that your house looks awesome and your blog has been so helpful to me. i recently signed up with MJH and your blog has provided me with heaps of knowledge for a rookie like me. Just wanted to ask you a bit more about doing the flooring after we need to keep anything in mind. Also if you don't mind my asking which tilers are you using. Thanks so much for your help."

Great timing with this question as presently the reason for my sleepless nights is flooring.  We opted to do our flooring after handover for a number of reasons but primarily due to the fact that I had my heart set on a certain tile which, McDonald Jones did not stock.

Things to consider when doing your own flooring

We questioned a lot of things prior to signing our contract but we really weren't armed with the right information and no-one really gave us a definite answer on anything it was all very 'it'll be okay' and we went with it.  Even now, a few weeks away from actually doing the flooring we still really don't know how it is going to work.  Tilers and builders are very non committal.

However, things you need to consider:
  • Screeding;
  • Skirtings;
  • Door heights;
  • Dishwasher space. 


To screed or not to screed - this is the million dollar question and I'll be damned if I can get anyone to give me an answer on whether you should or you shouldn't, its more a case of "Well you could get away with just glue, but you never know" (roll eyes and swear under breath right about now) so I thought 'fuck it' and I decided to go with the screeding.  Note I have read about lots of people who haven't screeded and their tiles were fine, but I read just as many horror stories. I don't want to take the chance so screeding is how we are proceeding.

Bear in mind that your choice of tile and finish will determine a lot with this question.  Liaise with your tiler.


We opted for MDJ to go ahead and install our skirtings, in hindsight I would have still done this but I think I may have asked for a higher skirting as I will lose a fair bit of it with the install of the tile.  Some people opt to keep them off but then you are faced with cutting, painting and installing them all yourself, I didn't want to do that, the last thing I want to do when I move in is anything that completes the house.  I didn't even want to do the flooring but I had no choice due to my tile choice.

Door Heights

Door heights could be an issue once you tile, depending on whether you will require screeding or not.  As you know we are screeding, I have resigned myself to the fact that there is a 90% chance I'll be requiring a carpenter to shave the bottom of my doors.  No point in stressing about it now, it is what it is and I'll cross that bridge sometime in the near future.


As for your dishwasher space, I've realised they come in all different shapes and sizes so I don't envisage buying one to be a problem, however if you are thinking about using your existing one, think about the height allowance as you will probably lose about 32mm after you do your tiling (if you screed).


I'm throwing this one in for good measure because I didn't know it was even something I had to consider until about a week ago when my tiler said to me "If you go 3mm grout then you will be fine without screed, but if you want 1.5mm then you will probably need screeding".  STOP THE BUS!

You mean I have to make ANOTHER decision.  I thought all I had to do was decide on a colour for grout, and that was easy, as close to the colour of the tile as you can get.  Now I need to consider a size.  Not once have I had to consider this and I've been planning this house for nearly 2 years.  None of my friends told me about it, MDJ didn't even mention it (incidentally they just go ahead with the 1.5mm in your wet areas).

Why is it important for me to share this with you?  Well when this question was put upon me, I figured what the hell 3mm isn't big (its teeny tiny right) and it will save me $2k if I don't screed.  However, I'm a good little girl scout so I sat down and did some research and I soon realised that 3mm is quite significant, especially when you are trying to create a seamless floor.  For us, the 3mm was out, I definitely need the 1.5mm to achieve the look I'm after.  I'm telling you guys about it because not all tilers will ask, and if you don't know anything about it, they could just go ahead with 3mm.  Also some tilers (if your building with Eden Brae, this might affect you) will charge you an excess to grout 1.5mm and its quite a significant excess.

We all love a visual so here you go, see if you can guess which is 1.5mm and which is 3mm.

Hope that gives you all something to think about...

Please bear in mind, I'm no expert, I'm only relaying what I've learned along the way (and it isn't much). 


Who is my tiler?

I write this blog for fun, to share my journey and to help people out.  However I am well aware of the power of a recommendation on a blog.

My blog is not sponsored in any way whatsoever.  Therefore the only time I will refer anyone to one of my contacts is when I'm 100% happy with them.  I'd hate to refer someone to a company that I wasn't happy with and see them share the same fate. 

Presently I'm 100% confident in my tilers, I wouldn't be giving them the work if I wasn't, but they haven't done their job yet.  As soon as the job is complete and I'm happy I will gladly give them the recommendation that they deserve but until then....

Happy Building
Ms Betsy xo

1 comment:

  1. Hi Betsy,

    Thank you so much for answering my question!! and going into that much detail , i really appreciate it. Since i am in the early stages of this process and if your tilers do a good job, do let me know. Thanks again :)

    and do post some pics, can't wait to see the progress :).