1. It’s easier on your feet. Tile and hardwood may still be top dogs in the flooring industry right now, but vinyl has a key advantage over both: It isn’t as hard on your feet. Homeowners with joint problems will welcome vinyl’s comfortable surface, especially during tasks that require standing for long periods, such as cooking.
2. It’s versatile. Because vinyl is generally scratch-resistant and nonporous, you can install it in any room of your home, including wet zones such as kitchens, bathrooms and mudrooms, as well as in high-traffic areas like living and family rooms. The only place you shouldn’t install vinyl is outdoors. It can warp when exposed to heat.
Vinyl is a chameleon, offering a variety of looks — from that of ceramic and porcelain tile to natural stone and hardwood. Some vinyl styles also have the option to include grout lines for an authentic tile look.
3. It’s resistant to water. In contrast to hardwood and laminate, which absorb moisture, vinyl is nonporous. Spills and splashes won’t cause it to warp, which means it’s perfectly suitable for bathroom installations. Certain vinyl products even have 100 percent waterproof backings, such as plastic or cork, for extra protection against moisture.
If your home is located along the coast or in the country, you might consider installing vinyl in a mudroom or entry. It’s durable enough to withstand dirt, sand, rain and snow.
4. It’s easier to install than other flooring types. Vinyl is rivaled only by laminate in terms of how DIY-friendly it is. Many vinyl floors have a click-and-lock system that allows homeowners to put the pieces together like a puzzle and create a floating floor. Peel-and-stick vinyl is also user-friendly, and more ambitious homeowners can certainly tackle glue-down vinyl planks without help from the pros.
5. It can roll with the punches. It’s true that vinyl will show imperfections in your floor because of how thin it is. (Your floors must be level prior to installation.) But this feature can also be advantageous if you have foundation issues. A shifty foundation can lead to cracked tile and warped hardwood. Vinyl is a smart choice if you’re faced with replacing damaged flooring from foundation movement. It may bend, but it won’t break. Its malleable structure can adapt to the way your home moves and stay relatively intact over time.