Can You Put Hardwood Flooring in Your Lake House?

Rod Lorenz

Hardwood flooring is beautiful and resilient and lends warmth and elegance to any home - even those near the water. Sure moisture is the biggest enemy of hardwood flooring and sand can also cause damage but for Lake Michigan vacation homeowners asking the question, “Can we put hardwood flooring in our lake house?” The answer is YES!

Hardwood flooring in a beach house or lake house is an amazing choice and homeowners only consider a few things to help with the longevity of their flooring.

One consideration is determining where to install the hardwood. Since moisture is tough on hardwood, it is advisable to have a walkway or entryway made of more water-resistant floorings such as tile or Luxury Vinyl Plank (LVP). Having a walkway increases the probability that water and sand have been shaken down before reaching the hardwood flooring area. It is best to have a mudroom in this area where wet and sandy clothes and gears can be safely removed.

Another consideration is species. White oak, ash, or Brazilian cherry are more dimensionally stable domestic woods and when paired with cuts like rift-and-quartered or quarter-sawn helps make the floor more resilient. Homeowners can also check out wider plank options. They show the intricate beauty of the wood’s grain and knots, and they also provide fewer seams where water and sand can deposit, providing more stability.

The type of finish for your hardwood floor is also something to decide. Many homeowners are drawn to site-finished hardwood flooring using a Swedish finish. Swedish-finish, also called conversion varnish, forms a chemical bond with the wood giving it a highly durable top layer. Compared to other finishes, this provides better protection against scratches, scuffs, water damage, and stains.  

When deciding which finish is more suitable for your home, remember that prefinished hardwood has beveled edges which could mean slight gaps between planks, while site-finished hardwood won’t have any gaps. In short, prefinished hardwood is more scratch-resistant, but site-finished hardwood is less prone to getting sand in between the planks. Being aware of all these considerations, homeowners may decide which best fit their lifestyle and flooring needs.

Lake homes are built with relaxation in mind. Most of these homes are designed in such a way that the interior is in tune with the calmness of the outdoors. The layout, décor, and flooring are chosen to complement the beauty and serenity of the environment. The use of hardwood flooring is great for creating such an ambiance.

If you’re interested in hardwood for your home, at the lake or not, our experts can help make sure you get the right floor for your needs. Contact us at 920-984-3383, 800-354-9902 or

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