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Old 04-20-2010, 08:27 PM
 
Location: Marion, IA
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Default What's a good flooring choice for kitchens and baths in rentals?

I'm putting new flooring in two units and am leaning towards loose lay sheet vinyl since it is easy to remove. Any other ideas? Pros, cons? Thanks
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Old 04-20-2010, 08:41 PM
 
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I'd go for a basic tile floor or an "upscale" vinyl maybe.
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Old 04-20-2010, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Marion, IA
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when you say tile floor, do you mean ceramic? I considered ceramic but it is a concrete floor and would be really cold.
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Old 04-20-2010, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Simmering in DFW
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ceramic tile
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Old 04-21-2010, 04:34 AM
 
Location: Bridgeville,Pa
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Ceramic ; dont do. I have had tenants break the ceramic tiles ; ok, they were old but still. I would go with an upscale vinyl ; its easier to replace and dosnt cost a fortune.
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Old 04-21-2010, 07:23 AM
 
Location: Tampa, FL
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As a tenant I would love to have tile in the wet areas (or really through the entire unit would be great) - however, I understand that represents a pretty large potential expense for landlords so it makes sense why it's not very common. I honestly don't think there is anything wrong with a nice new vinyl floor in a contemporary pattern such as the ones that mimic natural stone. They are quite durable, easy to clean, and as you noted - easy and cheap to replace when necessary.
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Old 04-21-2010, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Marion, IA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tilli View Post
As a tenant I would love to have tile in the wet areas (or really through the entire unit would be great) - however, I understand that represents a pretty large potential expense for landlords so it makes sense why it's not very common. I honestly don't think there is anything wrong with a nice new vinyl floor in a contemporary pattern such as the ones that mimic natural stone. They are quite durable, easy to clean, and as you noted - easy and cheap to replace when necessary.
My lower units have concrete floors. Wouldn't ceramic tile be extremely cold on a concrete floor?
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Old 04-21-2010, 08:15 AM
 
Location: 39 20' 59"N / 75 30' 53"W
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Small tile in the bath is a good choice, as long as you don't use white grouting, they have a long life, don't break and easy to clean. Vinyl doesn't always hold up well bc of the water and potential damage to the sub flooring.

Vinyl on the kichen, there are some beautiful varities out that look like wood.
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Old 04-21-2010, 09:14 AM
 
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Default Completely agree!

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgode View Post
Small tile in the bath is a good choice, as long as you don't use white grouting, they have a long life, don't break and easy to clean. Vinyl doesn't always hold up well bc of the water and potential damage to the sub flooring.

Vinyl on the kichen, there are some beautiful varities out that look like wood.
You do not want ceramic in the kitchen of your rental(s) -- if you get a light colored grout every dropped sip of grape juice stains it. If you get a dark grout the tenants can't see bugs and dirt. A nice no-wax vinyl floor is easier to find and clean-up spills, and that is a very big factor in minimizing insect issues.

Tile for a big area is expensive to buy, install, and repair/replace. It is also cold and loud. In the right kind of owner-property it can be a nice upgrade, but in a rental you want to plan for maintenance not just in the "capital expense" sense, but also what is reasonable for tenants to do on daily / weekly schedule. Mop & Glow with a foam mop that you give 'em as a house warming gift is a lot more reasonable that some complicated grout maintenance / sealer regiment.

A medium quality seamless vinyl floor is the way to go. It is also VERY easy to document damage and should you need to have it replaced when the tenants move out the same skills as laying carpet are in place so you can have "one stop shopping" to get replacement.

Tile in the bathroom is better option. Get a big enough square that the area around the toilet and shower/ tub is not going to have too many grout lines, and a medium color grout that reads "clean" not "stained" most of the time. People generally don't drop heavy enough things (like big pots and packages) they way they do in the kitchen so breakage is far less common. I also recommend having the doors cut a little bit higher so that folks are encouraged to have their own bathmats and things to keep the moisture under control as well doing what they can to ward off the dreaded "icy morning floor" syndrome...

Another tip: tile completely UNDER the vanity so that if that gets trashed you can buy another cheap one and not have to worry about the outline of the old one's footprint being where the tile stopped.

For the vinyl flooring in the kitchen have that cut to the cabinet, and use the appropriate quarter-round / shoe molding to minimize any bug and dirt trapping gaps.
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Old 04-21-2010, 12:14 PM
 
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My flooring of choice is Armstrong Designer Solarium... It is an inlaid product and lasts. The floors I self installed in the 80's still look great.

The secret is to go with a neutral pattern so the floor won't date easily.

Other owners go with inexpensive vinyl floors and figure they will get damaged and charge accordingly. The difference between the inlaid vinyl and rotogravure is the wear surface extends 60% or more through the product. Inlaid might gouge in rare cases... inlaid never rips or tears.

Sadly, inlaid floors are almost a thing of the past for residential... we still use them in Hospital settings.

Doing my own labor gave me a premium floor for the cost of a cheap one.

I always coved my floors and use hard cap metal... so much easier to keep clean. Coving is also, almost, a lost art.

My ideal installation for bathrooms is coved walls, under cabinet toe-kicks and extending the vinyl under the tub area before setting the tub... just about eliminates water problems in the subfloor and the floor will never curl or separate.

I've had too many cases of water damaged hardwood floors to ever recommend in a rental setting and tile can be easily damaged when placed over a wood subfloor...

Last edited by Ultrarunner; 02-19-2014 at 08:03 PM..
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