The Pros and Cons of Marble Tile

Design experts outline the pros and cons of choosing and installing marble tile for your floors.
White Marble Tile Floor

White Marble Tile Floor

“That area was tiled so that it was indestructible,” says design coordinator Laurie March. “Instead of installing wood in there we carried the tile out from the bathroom so that whole area has kind of a spa feeling to it but it is also just really practical.”

Photo by: Eric Perry

Eric Perry

Real marble tiles have a beautiful, unique look like no other surface, with all their whirling patterns and shade variations. But the same patterns that make marble beautiful can be a real headache to match from tile to tile, says Daniel Dixon, a California-based tile construction expert. To ensure patterns match, the Marble Institute of America recommends having your contractor lay out the tiles over the entire surface before installing so you can approve the result. All your tiles should come from the same original batch.

Marble, like most stone tiles, has high maintenance requirements. It must be sealed and cleaned regularly; for cleaning, use only a mild detergent solution or a product specially designed for marble. Never set your drink down on a marble surface (it will leave a ring) and wipe up any spills immediately as they can stain or etch marble?s porous surface.

Install Yourself? No
Best Use: Floors
Pro: Beauty
Cons: Expense; high maintenance; can crack, stain and etch readily
Price Range: $5–$15 per square foot

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