Originally Posted by SAHMinHawaii
If you couldn't afford to put in hardwood floors you would. I would much rather have wood laminate than icky carpet.
Yes if my choice was between carpet or laminate, I'd choose laminate. But, it depends where your priority is. For example, we couldn't afford everything we wanted in our new home. We gave up other areas so we could have hardwood. We can easily add new countertop at any time, once we can afford what we really want, but installing new flooring is more difficult (sometime a new subfloor is needed, you have to have all your furniture out of all rooms getting new flooring, etc.). I suppose if this is not a new house we are talking about, and there isn't other areas to cut costs, a person is wanting to rid themselves of carpet, and they can't afford hardwood, laminate might be an option. I'd definitely opt for cork over laminate though. To get a really nice laminate (which still does not look like real hardwood) you are getting close to the price of cork and cork is cheaper to install because you don't need underlay. Cork also has great insulating properties (laminate does not) and soundproofing qualities (laminate can be loud if you go with cheap underlay, especially on the 2nd floor).
This is just my opinion though. I know lots of people who like laminate. It's just not for me. I wouldn't even buy a house with carpet, and I wouldn't even put in laminate. On the other hand, DH wanted to save the money and go with a higher quality laminate in our new home. He thought it looked good enough (although even he agrees not as nice as hardwood). I am happy I won that battle.