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The Makeover of Matt Light
A new oak floor
Although many developers install wall-to-wall carpeting in the condominiums they market, it's not a wise choice. Even durable carpeting has a hard time standing up to foot traffic in the most heavily used parts of a home.

Wood is a more logical alternative, says Steven Kaitz, co-CEO of National Lumber, New England's largest independent supplier of building materials. "Wood is much warmer, it lasts longer and wears better," Kaitz says, recommending the Bruce Red Oak flooring that his company provided for Matt and Susie Light's home.

Obviously, wood floors are easier to maintain when there's a spill. Just wipe it up rather than call in the carpet cleaner. "Wood is also a much more sophisticated look," adds designer Betsy Speert, who insisted that a red oak floor would improve the Lights' living space.