Vinyl Tile or Sheet - Does it matter

jacrazySeptember 17, 2007

I'm replacing the vinyl flooring in the TH that I'm prepping to sell. It's an entry level home. Trying to keep my expenses down. The kitchen flooring is connected, and the same as, the foyer and powder room on the first floor. And I'm replacing the vinyl floors in the 2 bathrooms upstairs.

Would it be easier to have someone come in and put in vinyl tiles rather or the sheeting? I think it would end up costing me less if I went with the tiles, but my bf thinks potential buyers would like the sheeting more. I don't think it matters, so he suggested I pose the question to "the people on my house message board." That's you guys. What do you think?

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juliebatt

For selling, I truly don't think it matters. Whatever looks good.

From a personal standpoint after living with it, I much prefer sheet over tiles, because the tiles separate quickly over time.

But as a buyer, I highly doubt anyone's gonna walk in and say, "Oh goody! Sheet vinyl! I MUST have this house!" LOL So go with whatever's cheaper/better looking.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2007 at 9:01PM
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quip

If I were going to pay someone to install it, I'd go with sheet vinyl; there are fewer seams. If DIY, I'd consider a good quality vinyl tile for ease of install (or laminate in the kitchen/entry/PR).

But, as Julie pointed out, nobody is going to fawn over either one. Are you sure it is worth doing? Sometimes an old vinyl floor just needs a deep cleaning and a good shine coat.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2007 at 9:42PM
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marys1000

No one may fawn over either one but potential buyers have lots to look at and it may cause someone pause. I know I don't like tiles but do like sheet. Good quality sheet and yes you can tell fairly easily. If your updating to sell on the cheap people will be able to tell. And if it were me I'd be disappointed because I know I would have to replace it.
If this is an 800 sq foot entry home in a run down neighborhood ok, if its a nice little 1100 sq foot ranch in a nicer neighborhood it might make a difference. There's a fair amount of inventory out there. Don't know your market of course.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2007 at 5:50AM
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theroselvr

The sheet stuff, I've seen a lot of bad installs, even in model homes we walked where the glue was separating as we walked.

I would go with the better tiles. I can tell you there is a difference between the cheap and the more expensive ones. I'm very happy with the ones we used in our main bathroom.

I've shopped for peel & stick till I was blue in the face and found a few that were decent. There's one from Lowes, looks like the real stuff; not sure if your Lowes has it, it's called Cryntel Italia Stone - Eurostone. I did a google but didn't come up with any pictures other than the link below, look for the post by hidiane. The one we used is mixed in that photo - looking at the bottom row, 2nd tile from left. It's a beige tile with slight grays and creams. Home Depot has their version of it also, the one from Lowes seems to be pretty popular.

It was pretty easy to put down, hubby started it, I finished it. Cutting the tile was a bit harder than the softer tiles, but the look is so much better. I'm really happy with it. I have to get a photo of it one of these days. Of all the things I'll miss if we sell this house, it will be that floor.

Here is a link that might be useful: photo link

    Bookmark   September 18, 2007 at 6:34AM
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susanjn

I've lived with vinyl tiles in a couple houses. The only places we've had problems with separation is where there's been A LOT of water. Under normal damp mopping conditions we've had no problem.

For ease of installation, go with the tiles. Sheet vinyl is bulky and awkward to handle. Whichever you choose, take the time to do a good job on the installation.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2007 at 9:02AM
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clg7067

The good thing about installing an economical vinyl over ceramic is that maybe the buyers don't like your taste. Replacing vinyl is easier than tearing up ceramic.

BTW, I'd go with the sheet, also.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2007 at 9:04AM
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lyfia

I think the vinyl tiles would save you money and be just fine. The one thing I like about those is that you can get some that looks just like real tile and costs much much less than sheet vinyl that has the same look.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2007 at 10:39AM
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jacrazy

That you all for your opinions the photo link. You've been very helpful.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2007 at 11:33AM
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johnmari

We installed the Cryntel Italia Travertine vinyl tile - a buck a square foot at Lowes - in our old kitchen and upstairs bath, about 300sf total, and it looks amazing. (

, which was taken in progress and so the room is a mess, ) Doesn't really look anything like travertine, but it's a pleasantly neutral variegated beige/tan. HD's Trafficmaster is a comparable product. The reaction has been extremely positive and it is downright bizarre how many people think it's porcelain until they touch it or are told it's vinyl. (Uh, no grout lines, folks. Pay attention.) It's a 1994 tract-style Cape, a little under 2000sf but very modest - a starter for the folks trying to cram a couple of kids and all their junk into a typical apartment - but a VERY long way from an "800 sq foot entry home in a run down neighborhood"! It is still very much a "Formica and vinyl" house though, putting granite and ceramic, for example, in it would be downright laughable.

We DIYed - note we are not "weekend warrior" accomplished DIYers - and it was a hard few days of work, but it looks amazing. We would not have been able to DIY a sheet installation and when I think about what a crappy, cheap-looking sheet vinyl I would have been able to get for under $2 a square foot installed, I just laugh. Good quality sheet vinyl can get surprisingly pricey, I discovered it can be almost comparable to having an inexpensive ceramic tile installed! I do suppose though, if you have fairly small areas to do, it might save you a chunk of money to investigate the local flooring stores (not HD or Lowes) for sheet-vinyl remnants and hire your own installer.

Just stay away from the flimsy, high-gloss vinyl tiles. Go for the thicker, nearly-rigid, semi-matte tiles instead, they just look less chintzy. One reason why vinyl tiles can come up is installing them over existing sheet vinyl or vinyl tiles - you can get a problem called "plasticizer migration" that interferes with the adhesive bond. But if you're doing it specifically for selling and don't really care about the long-term durability factor, just slap 'em on over whatever. We tore up the old sheet vinyl (it was torn, curling and coming away from the floor anyway) and even though the tile was peel-and-stick we used a modified adhesive method (described in this thread in the flooring forum) to ease the installation process and produce a better end result because we believed in doing things right and not screwing whoever bought the place the way our PO did (perhaps inadvertently, who knows).

    Bookmark   September 25, 2007 at 12:03AM
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brutuses

Vinyl tiles by all means. It's less expensive and much more durable. Also, when the homeowner wants to change the floor it's much easier dealing with going over or taking up tiles rather than sheet vinyl.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2007 at 11:51AM
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gardenspice

Yep, In a cottage I sold, I used the vinyl tiles from Lowes and they looked really good. A friend walked in and said - you tiled???
(Ok, she may need glasses, but they did look surprisingly rich for vinyl.)

    Bookmark   September 25, 2007 at 3:41PM
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theroselvr

Just stay away from the flimsy, high-gloss vinyl tiles. Go for the thicker, nearly-rigid, semi-matte tiles instead, they just look less chintzy. One reason why vinyl tiles can come up is installing them over existing sheet vinyl or vinyl tiles - you can get a problem called "plasticizer migration" that interferes with the adhesive bond. But if you're doing it specifically for selling and don't really care about the long-term durability factor, just slap 'em on over whatever.

If you are doing it for resale in this market I suggest you go with the best one you can afford. We used a cheaper tile in our master, needless to say it was only a few months ago & some tiles are already scratched. I really hope I do not have to retile as it was hard enough finding the tiles we used due to how it looked in the room. I hate to think about trying to do that again.

Houses aren't selling as quick as they used to. You may have to live with the floor for 6 months.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2007 at 4:14PM
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Happyladi

Even if I do something specifically for selling the house, I still want to do a decent job. I wouldn't do something that I know would look okay for only a short time and then turn into a problem for the new buyers. I wouldn't want someone to do that to me. It's just wrong.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2007 at 4:45PM
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calliope

The vinyl tiled kitchen was the only floor I didn't have to resurface in my investment house. The previous owners had the forethought to leave nearly a whole carton of the pattern they used. They were very hard on their home and every other surface in the entire house was carpeted, sheet vinyled, painted, or whatever. But, there were only four bad tile in the kitchen floor a good scrubbing didn't make look new. I lifted up the tiles and replaced them from the carton and then applied a good acrylic "wax" to the old ones and you cannot see a difference. Looks fine.

    Bookmark   September 25, 2007 at 8:31PM
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theroselvr

You were lucky with the extras. My neighbor redid his floor, I happened to like it, told hubby to pick up something similar, he got the same one. We redid the floor in my dad's 2 family that was for sale, all using that same tile; there are no extras left after using them on dad's..

Our floor still looks great but I sweep regularly. My neighbor's floor wasn't so lucky. With 4 kids, 3 of them under 3, parts of that floor was trashed for the new owners. I do have a partial piece & told the new neighbor she can have the info off of the tile if she wants to try to match it online. I can;t imagine having to scrape such a big area of semi-fresh tiles to replace the whole floor.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2007 at 9:05AM
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johnmari

We made sure to buy a bunch of extra tiles. At a buck apiece, it's not like it was a major investment! So we're being nice to whoever our buyers may be by leaving them most of a case of tile (same with the master bath tile, I bought extra in case repairs were necessary). I've had several damaged sheet-vinyl floors repaired/patched (desperate attempts to save my security deposits, for the most part!) and they looked good for a while, and then the patches became painfully obvious.

We lived with our floor tiles from late April to late September, 5 months, and were SO not easy on them - our dog has nails that grow at turbo speed and it's a major fight to cut them (I can't take him to the groomer every week), so we knew he was likely to trash any of the shiny-surfaced cheap floors. We dropped things, including glass things that broke and heavy cans. There was a lot of traffic through the house with shoes on, plenty of mud (the kitchen had 3 outside doors!) and rocks brought in in the tread of DH's big ole boots. The matte finish really hides any scratches, if there are any. Goodness knows it really hid the dirt, I was continually stunned by how much came up every time I swept. :-) If I didn't have my heart set on something particular for the kitchen and bath I would not hesitate to use the very same tile in the house we just moved into.

And good for you for that attitude, happyladi - our POs did that corner-cutting to us and it sucked. That's how I know about the plasticizer migration, the shiny, sleazy, cheap fake "pink marble" vinyl tile he slapped on top of trashed sheet vinyl (which we had included in our repair list, and we did not know we could say "hey, this is unacceptable") began to slide around and lift up after about a year. It's not an approach I recommend at all, I'm sorry my sarcasm regarding that didn't come through better.

    Bookmark   September 26, 2007 at 10:45PM
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theroselvr

We made sure to buy a bunch of extra tiles. At a buck apiece, it's not like it was a major investment!

We'd both done this (my neighbor & us) but when dad's house was being prepped for sale as inexpensively as possible, we used the tile was had for our own houses. On one hand it was good because we were supposed to get reimbursed for money we put out and didn't (my dad was gone by this time). We're still owed a few thousand.

And good for you for that attitude, happyladi - our POs did that corner-cutting to us and it sucked. That's how I know about the plasticizer migration, the shiny, sleazy, cheap fake "pink marble" vinyl tile he slapped on top of trashed sheet vinyl (which we had included in our repair list, and we did not know we could say "hey, this is unacceptable") began to slide around and lift up after about a year. It's not an approach I recommend at all, I'm sorry my sarcasm regarding that didn't come through better.

Let me also explain my comment more. We pulled up all flooring that was being replaced, plus we used luon (sp). I did not set out to buy cheaper tile for our master bath, it was the one that matched the best. This is something new to me, I've never replaced tile before and had no clue the difference in price / thickness. I suggest not buying bottom price, but going around to different stores if someone is having a hard time matching like I did. I only tried Depot & Lowes, had I known about the cheaper tile's wear, I would have tried more stores.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2007 at 7:16AM
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newgardenelf

It really does matter. people assume first time buyers or entry level buyers aren't fussy or will settle for what they can afford- WRONG. Poor workmanship is poorworkmanship regardless of what the product is...so #1 it must be a professionl quality job either my a professional or someone who has their skill level even if that is you. #2 buyers know cheap when they see it and nothing screams cheap more than vinyl tiles....and the building inspectors I use tell buyers during the inspection that water on a vinyl tile floor in the bathroom will seep through and rot the floor and he recommends they update that to sheet vinyl as soon as they can.

Doubts, questions, fear or future repairs cost the seller money or a good buyer. some shortcuts are not shortcuts

    Bookmark   October 7, 2007 at 4:58AM
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