Flooring

7 Replies

Hi, first post from a long time lurker.  I have a unit with an open floor plan with a large living/dining area and a small kitchen off to the side, kind of like an L shape. There is no doorway to the kitchen, it just opens to the living/dining room. There is also a hallway that comes into the l/d area from the other side of the room (the top of the L). I would like to install vinyl plank flooring in the kitchen and hall, but here is my dilemma-

The living/dining area has original narrow plank hardwood floors in a lighter finish. I'm not sure if I should try to match it as best I can, or contrast it with a dark floor. The floors will butt up to each other. I was planning to use the same floor in the kitchen and in the hall. 

I would say this is a C+ 1 br unit in a decent area.

Any opinions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

What you want to avoid is "similar but different" so if you go with another "wood" go with a large contrast. Another consideration for a kitchen are the cabinets if they're wood. (you don't want a floor "similar but different" there either.)

Welcome @Steve Nowa , the former lurker!

Vinyl plank can be great in a kitchen. You said "unit" and "c+" so i'm guessing this is a lower-priced rental and not a flip project. If it's a long-term hold, do what works for you and what will still attract good tenants. 

If this is a fix and flip it's a different story. I doubt most buyers want vinyl plank meeting up to real hardwood. Do whatever most buyers expect to see in your current price range and location. Look at your competition and ask around. 

Have fun! 

Thanks for the input. Doug you are correct, it is a long term hold, lower rental, 1+1 duplex. I think I am going to try to contrast it with the darkest floor available. I'm trying to find one where you barely see the grain.  It is a small kitchen. I can't see someone not renting because of it. If it looks that bad I'll rip it up and put it in the downstairs foyer. 

Steve,

First let me say that I agree with what John Teachout has stated above. If you do this, you definitely want a drastic contrast. You want it to look very intentional. With that being said, if you haven't completed the project yet, consider a porcelain wood look plank tile instead. The reasoning is that you will accomplish the same end goal (a durable water resistant surface for your rental's kitchen) but have flooring that will truly take a beating from renters. From a cost perspective you should have a very similar installed (out the door and on your floor) investment. But the tile will last many years longer. Vinyl plank, although exceptionally durable against water, has a tendency to move, peak and gash if you're speaking of the floating variety.

COST SHOULD LOOK SOMETHING LIKE THIS:

QUALITY INTERLOCKING VINYL FLOATING FLOOR: 2.99 PER SQUARE FOOT + 1.00 PER SQUARE FOOT INSTALLATION. 3.99 INSTALLED ON YOUR FLOOR WITH AN EXPECTED LIFE OF 2-5 YEARS IN A HEAVY TRAFFIC RENTAL ENVIRONMENT.  3.99 PER FOOT INSTALLED.

WOOD LOOK PLANK PORCELAIN TILE:  1.99 PER SQUARE FOOT + 2.00 PER SQUARE FOOR INSTALLATION. 3.99 INSTALLED ON YOUR FLOOR WITH AN EXPECTED LIFE OF 20 YEARS-LIFE IN A HEAVY TRAFFIC RENTAL ENVIRONMENT. 3.99 PER SQUARE FOOT INSTALLED. THIS CAN VARY AS MUCH AS .50 PER SQUARE FOOT DEPENDING UPON WHETHER YOUR INSTALLER PROVIDES THE THINSET AND GROUT.

IF YOU ARE DEAD SET ON THE VINYL PLANK I WOULD HIGHLY RECOMMEND GETTING THE DOLLAR A FOOT VINYL PLANK WHICH YOU GLUE TO THE FLOOR. IT IS 1/3 THE COST BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY IF YOUR FUTURE TENANTS EVER DESTROY A PIECE, AND THEY WILL, EACH PIECE OF THIS GLUE DOWN VINYL PLANK VARIETY CAN BE EXTRACTED STRAIGHT UP WITHOUT DISRUPTING THE REMAINDER OF THE FLOOR. REPLACING THE PIECE IS AS SIMPLE AS GLUING DOWN THE NEW PIECE IN ITS PLACE. PLUS THE GLUE DOWN VARIETY IS MUCH LESS LIKELY TO MOVE AND PEAK BEING AS AN ADHESVIVE BONDS IT TO THE FLOOR. IN THE TRADITIONAL TYPE OF VINYL PLANK INTERLOCKING FLOATING FLOOR YOU HAVE TO REMOVE THE BASEBOARD FROM THE WALL AND TAKE THE PIECES UP PIECE BY PIECE ALL THE WAY ACROSS TO THE DAMAGED PIECE WHICH SEEMINGLY IS ALWAYS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROOM. LOL. THEN YOU HAVE TO REPLACE THE DAMAGED PIECE AND REINSTALL THE ROOM AND BASEBOARD TO COMPLETE THE PROCESS.

AGAIN THESE ARE JUST MY THOUGHTS. WE DEAL WITH TONS OF FLIPPERS AND LANDLORDS. YOU WANT A FLOOR THAT WILL TAKE A BEATING 7 DAYS A WEEK FOR YEARS TO COME! I TRULY HOPE THIS INSIGHT FROM A FLOORING GUY HELPS!

- THOMAS

DOLLAR FLOOR

** ALL OF THIS IS ASSUMING NORMAL CONDITIONS. FOR INSTANCE IF YOUR WHOLE HOUSE FLOODS IT WON'T MATTER WHAT YOU HAVE IN TERMS OF FLOORING.

My C unit tenants could really care less what the flooring is.  Either way they will rent if the unit is clean.  Stick with durable floor... wood or tile.

Frank

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