Pre-finished vs sand/stain wood floor


I'm about to replace the carpet with wood floor.
The price of pre-finished (15yrs) is the same with the common 1 (???) red oak is $8/sf. The red oak floor needs to be sanded and stained.
At first I wanted to go with the pre-finished until my co-worker told me about her 2 years old floor (pre-finished wood). It already shows sign of wearing.
Would you please give me your opinion?
Thanks.
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The durability of the real hardwood will depend on what coating you put on it. I had a 4 year old house with pre-finished hardwood. It was very durable but was fading badly in areas with high sunlight. Once that happens, there's not much can be done about it.
Now I have 40 year old real hardwood floors that look better than the day they were new.
For the money, I'll take the real hardwood. The extra work is worth it.
-rev

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I have pre-finished in my family room and the adjoining hall. After 4 years, it is about perfect. No sights of wear, just a couple of small scratches that any floor can get. Quality pre-finished flooring has very hard aluminum oxide finishes that are very durable.
As for the oak, it does not have to be stained. You may want it stained, but that is an option. There are also many other types of wood available if you are willing to spends for them. Cherry, maple, ipe, hickory, are all out there.
If you like the pre-finished, get a good quality and you will be happy with it. IMO, I like the regular types of flooring, but I'd probably opt for a different wood if it was in the budget. It can be re-finished many times if need be.
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If you can afford it, go with with the unfinished wood. The pre-finished has seams that show, giving a sort of ripple effect.
The sand and finish floors once done look like a single floor. Much warmer and appealing in my opinion.
Regards Dale
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wrote:

father's company laid acres of Bruce prefinish in the houses he built. I visit some of those houses on a regular basis. 30-40 years later, most of them look fine, as long as they were kept swept and dry. Hard factory finish beats anything you can apply in the field, IMHO. 2 things will kill a wood floor finish- water, and grit, like trapped under area rugs or w/w carpet. (w/w over hardware is a sin, but that is another discussion.)
aem sends...
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I would get the unfinished boards. That's because I've never seen anything prefinished that looked like it had enough polyeurethane on it.
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