Vinyl floors are a hot commodity - like fresh off the stove hot. Even though it’s been around for decades, vinyl is gaining traction in the flooring industry. Its market share grew more than one percent from 2009 to 2014, according to Floor Focus magazine. Consumers love how versatile the product is, as well as the authentic wood look LVT planks.
So when should you think about buying vinyl floors? Probably if one of these five reasons applies to you:
1) You want affordable floors
Just how affordable? It’s up to you, really. The price of vinyl floors is ideal for tight or moderate budgets. Home Flooring Pros estimates the average cost of vinyl at between $2 and $2.50 per square foot, with the lowest cost at around $0.50 per square foot and the highest at $5 per square foot. Here are the factors that influence price:
Vinyl with more stylish patterns and thicker vinyl will typically cost you more money. LVT with wood plank looks can run up to the $5 per square foot mark, but that is still less than what you’ll pay for quality hardwood floors.
2) You want easy installation
We may be flooring installation experts, but we get it: not everyone wants to hire a professional to install their flooring. If there’s ever a flooring type to install yourself, it’s vinyl, thanks to the following four methods:
- Click and lock
- Loose lay
- Peel and stick
Click and lock is by far the easiest vinyl floor installation process. According to Floor Covering Weekly, click installations are “becoming stronger, simpler, and more readily available.” Mannington Residential’s Adura plank, for example, has an exclusive LockSolid technology that allows your vinyl to be fit together like puzzle pieces during installation. Though Mannington recommends using professional installers, it’s still an ideal method for do-it-yourselfers.
Loose lay installation doesn’t involve any type of adhesive; you lay the vinyl planks or tiles down and finish them with a quarter round. Glue down vinyl does require greater attention to detail during installation, but overall, vinyl floors still provide the most amateur-friendly flooring installation methods.
*Pro Tips: Always make sure your floors are leveled before installing vinyl. Vinyl floors are also an excellent option for homes with foundation problems.
3) You want little to no maintenance
Vinyl floors are relatively easy to maintain. They don’t have the same propensity to scratch as hardwood and tile do; they also handle moisture well.
The biggest advantage, in our eyes, is the fact that should your vinyl become damaged, it’s a quick fix.
It has to do with how your vinyl floors are installed. If it’s via click and lock, simply remove the piece and click a new one in place. If it’s peel and stick, peel the old vinyl off and the new one on. If it’s glue down, rip the old piece up and glue down another one.
4) You own a commercial property
Particularly, the commercial sector is foaming at the mouth for wood look vinyl, for two reasons: style and durability.
According to Floor Focus, it’s in huge demand in restaurants and hospital lobbies because it looks like real hardwood but can withstand what hardwood cannot. Vinyl can handle the heavy foot traffic your customers bring to your business.
5) You want hardwood looks without buying hardwood
Hardwood floors aren’t right for everyone – namely households with children and pets. Vinyl floors can be an apt replacement.
It would’ve been borderline heretical to suggest that luxury vinyl tile (LVT) could give hardwood a run for its money 20 years ago. Not anymore. Floor Focus said it best in its February issue: “luxury vinyl tile is the hottest product category in the world right now.” And Floor Focus adds that it’s already taking market share from hardwood and laminate flooring.
The eye test just won’t cut it anymore.
Thanks to good ‘ole technology, it’s getting harder and harder to distinguish hardwood from vinyl plank. Floor Focus cites LVT’s convincing textures and authentic wood looks as the biggest reason behind its growing popularity. These include hand-scraped appearances and a good dose of grains.
Can you tell whether this floor is hardwood or not? (Hint: it’s not). Didn’t think so.