We are SO very very very excited to show you our new vinyl tile floors today!
Although the kitchen renovation isn’t quite finished, it is getting pretty close, but for today, let’s talk about those floors!
We are so happy with them!
Today, I want to share why we chose luxury vinyl tile or lvt flooring for our home and after reading it, you might come to the same decision if you are ever looking for new flooring.
So let’s rewind a bit, first. When we purchased our home, there were 6 different kinds of flooring on the main level. Yes, 6! We had contractor grade oak hardwoods, 3 kinds of carpet, sheet vinyl, and regular tile. You could see every type of floor from the kitchen. It looked like some sort of patchwork quilt of flooring. In 2017, we had new solid hickory hardwoods installed over all of that…except the kitchen.
The reasons why we didn’t put hardwoods in the kitchen fell mostly to a design. With our kitchen, my husband adamantly opposed painting the cabinets. I’m pretty sure the phrase “over my dead body” was used more than once, lol. However, I still wanted a warm and bright kitchen. That meant that the Hickory hardwoods we had put throughout the rest of the house would be just too much for the kitchen. In fact, the hardwoods are very similar in tone to the cabinets and would have been very dark in that kitchen. That left me with the choice of tile, vinyl, or laminate flooring. For me, that really only left one choice: luxury vinyl tile.
Why, you ask?
Reasons We Chose Luxury Vinyl Tile For Our Kitchen
Cost of LVT Tile Vs Traditional Tile
The biggest cost saver in our project was that we could DIY this installation, saving us literally thousands of dollars! However, the materials themselves for luxury vinyl tile installation were still much cheaper.
For our lvt flooring, the cost broke down to $3 per square foot and about $0.30 per linear foot of grout strips. For our 300 square foot project, the total including all materials and supplies was $1400. That includes the APA underlayment that was required as a substrate over the plywood sub-floor. The options for luxury vinyl tile prices ranged from $2-5.50 per square foot.
Let’s compare that to our bathroom renovation last year. The floor tile was $3 a square foot over 24 feet. Our total cost for the floor was $230, after mortar, cement backerboard, grout, and other installation supplies. If you multiplied that to 300 square feet, that’s $2800!
So, in cost comparison, traditional tile installation supplies are much more than lvt flooring.
Easier for a DIY Installation
Luxury Vinyl Tile installation is much easier than traditional tile. After the floor is prepared, you lay a special glue and stick the tile down for 24 hours before walking on it. Although you can technically cut lvt flooring with a razor, we used a jigsaw because it was so much faster and the cut edges would be hidden underneath quarter round.
Even as an avid DIYer, I would have hired out for a professional installation of traditional mortar and grout tile because it is such a large and open area.
*Tip: Don’t want to spend time for searching for a product at Home Depot or Lowe’s? Use their in-store pickup online and they will have your order ready for you at the customer counter.
Luxury Vinyl Tile is not like that builder grade sheet vinyl that so many homes have. It is much more durable to things like dog paws, dropped dishes, etc. What I like most about it that while it is very durable, lvt flooring won’t crack like traditional tile. The one downside to all of this is water. Because the style of flooring we chose has seams, theoretically water can get between those seams if, say your kitchen flooded or the dog water bowl over turned and no one noticed. We haven’t had that experience, so I can’t speak to it.
Vinyl Tile with Grout Lines is Easy to Clean
Anyone who has solid white grout in a floor will tell you how hard it is to keep clean. In fact, in our powder room, I deep clean with a toothbrush and reseal the grout every six months. Even still, it looks dingy and gross most of the time. I will not have that problem with our new kitchen floors. The grout is actually finely cut vinyl tile so a good mopping is all they will ever need!
*For our floors I purchased luxury vinyl tile grout strips from Karndean. You can learn about their design strips here. These are basically thin and uniform vinyl strips that can lay between tile. Even though our vinyl tiles are from Shaw Flooring, both the tile and the Karndean strips were exactly 2.5mm thick. While groutable vinyl tile does exist, I personally would never trust that for a long term flooring solution.
Honestly, the only con that I can give so far is that despite our best efforts, some glue did get on the surface of the tiles and that has been a pain to clean off. While I haven’t used anything beyond a scrub pad to clean it, we have found lots of spots particularly around the tile edges that will take several passes to find and clean them up.
You may or may not be able to see, but we are still in renovation mode. That green tape is not decoration, lol. We still have some finishing touches to do and then I will be so happy for the reveal! SO EXCITING! Stay tuned, I’ll be here working 🙂
You can see more of our many kitchen project ideas and DIY experiences here:
- Kitchen Island Upgrade with Trim
- The Best Tips for a Glass Peel and Stick Backsplash
- Tips For Painting Old Kitchen Cabinets
- Where Our Kitchen Renovation Started
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