LVT or real hardwood in a nice rental?

7 Replies

Just closed on a nice 4/2 that we're going to rent out long-term for the cash flow. We need to tear out the awful carpet, but are debating real hardwood versus a wood-looking LVT (luxury vinyl tile). You can't beat the LVT for wear-and-tear, but if we ever sell, this neighborhood calls for hardwood. Price would be about the same either way. Any thoughts??

@Jay Hinrichs

$5 per sq ft for both labor and materials on the hardwood. LVT might be a little cheaper on installation but not enough to sway us on cost alone. 

If you haven't yet, pull up the carpets before you decide.

You may already have hardwood underneath. If so just get it refinished!

How high end are you going on the luxury vinyl tiles? The armstrong ones are like a buck a piece. 

Do you really think after years of long term tenancy that your hardwood floors are still gonna look good enough to market and sway a buyer? All it's gonna take is an icemaker leaking or a house party with someone in stilettos to make you regret the hardwood. That's just my opinion. I'd allure them and then think about it again once I decide to sell. 

How long are you planning to rent? As someone else mentioned, those hardwoods are going to wear with renters likely a bit quicker than normal. If it's just a few years, probably no big deal. But you mentioned long-term rental, which means you may need to address flooring before selling in the future anyways. Unless you can charge a premium on rent for having hardwoods that is enough to offset the extra cost of install, perhaps consider vinyl or laminate?