Yes! Vinyl has evolved so much that we’re now seeing this flooring in some very upscale homes, as well as in every room. It is no longer an installation just for the kitchen or bath.

First the basics: What is it?

Vinyl flooring consists of several layers, including an underlayment (often attached) that blocks moisture and provides extra cushioning. If the product already comes with an underlayment you don’t need to buy an extra one. Alternatively, if it doesn’t, you want might to add one. Speak to your flooring retailer about this.

Then there’s a core, which can be one of three things: PVC (vinyl composites), typically found in a luxury vinyl installation. It is waterproof and durable.

SPC (stone plastic composite) is often used in the rigid vinyl version. Ultra-durable and thicker, it provides an even higher level of waterproof and it’s a little firmer and sturdier on which to stand.

Floors with the SPC core were once mainly used in commercial applications, but with enhanced design options, we're seeing it more and more in residential installations.

WPC stands for wood-plastic composite and is a newer version of luxury vinyl flooring. Although the differences between SPC and WPC are subtle, this is slightly more pliable. Whether you choose SPC or WPC is a matter of personal preference.

Next is the image layer, a remarkably realistic mimic of wood, tile or stone. On top is a clear plastic wear layer that protects the entire installation.

Stylish Savings

Any version will give you a realistic look of wood, tile or stone. Because of digital photography, you will see all of the knots, raised grains and swirls of the real thing. Embossing will give you wire-brushed, hand-scraped, distressed or antique looks. There's an assortment of colors, species, and finishes; for instance, if you get a wood look with a glossy finish--WOW!

It is available in sheets but, for even more realism, you can have it cut into planks or tile-sized pieces.

Other benefits include easy maintenance and quick installation that’s also DIY-friendly.

For more information, come into the Prianti’s Flooring showroom in Port Saint Lucie, FL, and be sure to ask about our free estimate.