Vinyl is becoming a go-to, cost-effective hardwood flooring alternative. It is gaining more popularity as a way to achieve a realistic look of hardwood floor without paying an arm and a leg. Unlike solid hardwood, vinyl flooring holds up so well in moisture-prone areas. But how economical vinyl flooring is? What do you need to know about the vinyl flooring cost? Is it worth switching from hardwood to vinyl?
To address these questions, we have run down the cost of vinyl flooring installation, materials, replacement, and other special considerations, so you can decide if vinyl is the right flooring material for your home.
Vinyl Flooring Cost Per Square Foot
According to FIXr, the national average vinyl flooring cost is ranging between $600 to $2000. This cost normally varies depending on the type and quality of vinyl floors you want to install. Vinyl flooring products are available in a wide range of finishes, thicknesses, shapes, styles, and installation methods. Based on HomeAdvisor, you may expect that the average vinyl flooring cost is between $3.50 and $15 per square foot. However, at the least expensive end, some manufacturers and local contractors offer vinyl sheets as low as $1 per square foot. The price range of vinyl flooring installation may change depending on the discretion of the manufacturers and builders. It will be helpful to discuss this further with a local vinyl flooring contractor to provide you the most cost-effective options.
Vinyl Flooring Cost According to Type
Not all vinyl floor products are created equal. As mentioned earlier, vinyl flooring cost varies depending on the quality and type of vinyl product you choose. In general, vinyl flooring is categorized into three: sheet vinyl, vinyl tiles, and luxury vinyl. Each vinyl type is available in several variations such as quality, thickness, and style.
Vinyl Flooring Cost: Sheet Vinyl
One of the most inexpensive vinyl flooring products is sheet vinyl. This type of vinyl flooring is created with thin flexible sheets of vinyl attached securely with a printed design and transparent wear layer. Not only it is the most affordable vinyl option, but it is also waterproof, making it an incredible choice for moisture-prone areas such as bathrooms and kitchens. This is because sheet vinyl has fewer seams when installed. However, because of its quality and low cost, sheet vinyl won’t increase your home’s real estate value. And when it gets damaged, you need to replace the entire sheet.
Normally, sheet vinyl comes in either 6- or 12-feet width. The average material cost of sheet vinyl is between $0.50 and $2 per square foot, not including installation. If you wish to get a free in-home consultation, you can always talk to a professional vinyl flooring contractor near you.
Vinyl Flooring Cost: Vinyl Tile
The components of a vinyl tile are similar to sheet vinyl; however, the former is typically available in boxes of square pieces. Vinyl tile can be installed as a floating floor using a click-lock system or glued-down with adhesives. Tiles are available in 12”x12” or 9”x9”. The thicker it is, the more durable and more expensive vinyl flooring is. The average cost of vinyl tile flooring is between $3 and $5 per square foot.
Vinyl Flooring Cost: Luxury Vinyl
Luxury vinyl flooring is quite different from sheet vinyl and vinyl tiles. It has better quality because of its semi-rigid, thicker material. It can even provide a more realistic look of natural stone and solid hardwood, making it a great choice to increase your property’s resale value.
Luxury vinyl flooring is available in tile or plank form. Though it can also be glued down, luxury vinyl flooring is typically installed as a floating floor. This means that tiles or planks snap together at the edges, and you can simply place them on top of the underlayment without the need to apply adhesive. The average cost of luxury vinyl planks or tiles is between $2.50 and $5 per square foot. Patterns and designs may change the cost of the planks or tiles, so you may need to talk to a local flooring contractor for better pricing.
Vinyl Flooring Cost: Commercial Vinyl
Commercial-grade vinyl flooring has a special coating to withstand hard impacts, so it is very ideal in high foot traffic areas. It creates ultra-realistic patterns and designs because its photographic layer contains Hi-Fi images. Typically, commercial grade vinyl flooring cost is ranging from $1 to $5 per square foot.
Vinyl Flooring Cost: Patterns And Colors
To create a realistic look and good quality designs, vinyl flooring should need colors and patterns. These designs are created in two different ways: printed or inlaid.
Printed Vinyl Flooring. The patterns and colors are printed on paper, which is fused to the vinyl’s top layer. Most sheet vinyl and vinyl tiles are printed to provide a realistic appearance. The printing quality also varies, and the price changes depending on the patterns and colors you choose. The typical cost of printed vinyl flooring is between $1 and $5 per square foot.
Inlaid Vinyl Flooring. With inlaid vinyl flooring, the colors and patterns are designed by reinforcing the granules of color through the vinyl’s top layer. This provides a more in-depth and detailed texture on the vinyl floor as compared to printed vinyl type. It creates more accurate and realistic designs. Hence, it is more expensive, which is averaging between $5 and $12 per square foot. Typically, you will see inlaid material and design in luxury vinyl flooring.
The Average Cost Of Vinyl Flooring By Backing
Normally, sheet vinyl has two distinct kinds of construction depending on the types of backing: felt and fiberglass. The type of backing used can change the process of installation. Vinyl flooring cost will also be affected because of the backing used for sheet vinyl.
Felt Back Vinyl Flooring. The average cost of felt back vinyl flooring is between $1 and $1.50 per square foot. This type of vinyl construction requires to be installed using a permanent adhesive, so it will completely stick to the subfloor and prevent curling up on the ends of the vinyl floor. It is a traditional way of backing and normally labor-intensive. Also, it is much harder to install than fiberglass backing. Felt back vinyl flooring is not ideal for a below-grade area such as a basement because of its potential moisture issues.
Fiberglass-Backed Vinyl Flooring. Because it is simpler to install, fiberglass backing is the most popular choice today. You can install it using a releasable adhesive or without adhesive at all. This type of backing provides more comfort and cushion underfoot. It is not prone to curling issues, so you can install it anywhere even in the basement. Normally, fiberglass-backed vinyl flooring costs $1 to $2 per square foot.
Styles of Vinyl Flooring
Vinyl flooring offers myriad options in terms of styles and designs to resemble the look of natural stone, solid hardwood, and other hardscaped flooring materials. The kind of designs and styles you prefer are available at varying prices depending on the quality of the vinyl product and the complexity of the style.
Vinyl Wood. If you love the appearance and grain of solid hardwood, then wood-look vinyl flooring is a great choice for your home. Wood-look vinyl, unlike solid hardwood floors, is impervious to water or moisture damage, so it is ideal for moisture-prone areas. Depending on your budget, you can choose the standard vinyl types or luxury vinyl products. The average cost ranges from $3 to $12 per square foot.
Plain Vinyl. This type of vinyl flooring has a world of options in color and texture. It is so easy to mix and match designs using plain colors. The cost of the material varies depending on the type of vinyl product you choose, be it sheet, tile, or luxury vinyl.
Stone-Look Vinyl. Vinyl can also mimic the appearance of natural stones such as marble, slate, and limestone. The cost of the material depends on the quality, patterns, and variations you prefer. In this case, you may want to speak with a local vinyl flooring contractor near you for a free in-home estimate.
Vinyl Flooring Installation Cost
Installation of vinyl flooring is relatively less labor-intensive, making it a great material for both DIYers and flooring contractors. The average cost of vinyl installation ranges from $790 to $2,852 with a national average cost of $1,820. If you plan to hire a professional vinyl installer, you can expect that contractors will charge you approximately $36 per hour. This is an average between $3 and $10 per square foot, not including material costs. For this price range, most local vinyl contractors include services such as shopping for all the materials you need for installation, remove the old floor if necessary, install the new vinyl flooring, and clean up the project area. While it is true that hiring a professional flooring installer will cost you more than doing it yourself, it is still preferable to hire a professional to make sure that the project is successfully and properly done.
Cost of Replacing Vinyl Flooring
In the event that you are planning to change your existing vinyl floor and replace it with a different kind of floor covering, then you need to remove the old vinyl material first. The cost of removing the floor will depend on a lot of factors. For one, you need to consider how old the vinyl flooring is. In some cases, old adhesive vinyl flooring may have asbestos content. If you notice that the color of your floor or its adhesive is dark, then your vinyl floor might contain asbestos. In this case, your vinyl floor needs to be tested first before removing it.
Aside from asbestos content, an aged vinyl flooring is much harder to remove. You may expect to spend between $5 and $10 per square foot to replace vinyl flooring in your home. It is better to talk to a local vinyl flooring contractor to ask for more cost-effective options.
Additional Vinyl Flooring Costs
The additional cost of vinyl flooring installation varies depending on the area where you want to install vinyl and the type of vinyl products you prefer. Will you need an underlayment? Are you installing the vinyl flooring products in a moisture-prone or below grade area? Are you installing it yourself? Here are some possible items that may require additional expenses.
Installation Tools. In case you plan to install vinyl flooring yourself, you must have several essential tools and equipment to make it possible. For a successful vinyl flooring installation, you typically need the following tools: tapping blocks, rubber mallet, utility knife, level, tape measure, spacing blocks, jigsaw multi-tool, and knee pads. You will also need a special adhesive if the vinyl floor product will be installed using a glue-down method. The costs of these essential tools vary depending on the manufacturer’s brand.
Underlayment. Some vinyl flooring options don’t have underlayment attached beneath the floorboards. With this, you may need to install and buy one. Underlayment is an optional floor layer underneath any floor covering, but most contractors or builders recommend having it installed. This is because underlayment dampens noise inside a room and provides a cushion underfoot. If you are planning to install underlayment, it will cost between $0.50 and $5 per square foot. This price normally depends on the quality and thickness of the underlayment.
Trims. When installing vinyl floors, do not forget to include the cost of transition strips and wall trim. The average cost of floor trim ranges between $0.50 and $3 per square foot.
Vapor Barrier. If you are planning to install vinyl flooring on a damp or humid area of the house, you need a vapor barrier to avoid any mildew or mold formation.
Installing Vinyl Floor: DIY vs Hiring a Professional
If you are a seasoned and highly skilled DIYer, then you can save on labor expenses by installing the vinyl floor yourself. That’s a huge savings of $36 per hour! However, there are several things you need to consider if you really want to install the floor on your own. While it is true that the installation of vinyl flooring is favorable to DIYers, you should also keep in mind that installation itself requires expertise, knowledge, and skills. You need to think about safety, the accuracy of the measurement and steps, the availability of tools, and the overall quality of the job. Doing the flooring project by yourself means that it will take a much longer time as compared to hiring a professional vinyl floor contractor.
When you hire a professional, you have the entire team who will handle all the jobs. Hence, you save time, effort, and money in the long run. Not to mention that it also saves you from the risk of mishandled and improper installation.
Now’s The Best Time To Schedule A Free In-Home Consultation
If you have already decided to install vinyl flooring in your home, now’s the right time to connect with us. Carpet Ready is a team of highly skilled professionals dedicated to providing you an exceptional experience for your next flooring makeover. We provide great deals and offer a wide variety of flooring options to fit your style and price-point. Call us today to schedule a free in-home consultation with one of our flooring experts!