It has become very fashionable in Britain to tear out the carpet and have a fine hardwood floor fitted. No modern apartment can be seen to be without a beautiful wood floor. Some connect this trend to fears about carpets and Asthma. However, carpets do have some health benefits, most notably improved air circulation.
Regardless of the aesthetics of wood floors and regardless of the merits of wood floors vs carpet, the combination of hardwood floors and the British custom of wearing shoes at home is very bad news for people living in blocks of flats. The sound of people stomping about on a wood floor in high heels or boots can make life miserable for people living below.
If you live in an hardwood floored apartment and you have people living below, please think about your poor neighbours and take your shoes off.