We've always had hardwood in the apartments we lived in--and now in the house we've lived in for the last 15 years. I know it's in--but I'm really a carpet girl at heart. We have carpet upstairs in the kids' rooms. I can't imagine the noise that would have come from up there when they were little. And now as teenagers, they thump everywhere they walk. The noise on the wood stairs is amazing when 13yo boy comes clattering down. I grew up in a house with wall-to-wall carpet and do believe that it is easier to care for than these wood floors, which show every bit of dog and cat hair and every bit of dirt. I also believe, like others here, that stone, tile or linoleum is best in kitchens, bathrooms & laundry rooms.