Whether you're shopping for cheap flooring options to complete your kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, or basement, the latest innovations in materials give you more looks to choose from while keeping your budget in check.
We researched the best cheap flooring options based on price per square foot, water resistance, durability, and overall appearance. And for expert help, we consulted Deane Biermeier, a contractor living in Minnesota with nearly 30 years experience in home repair, maintenance, remodeling, and carpentry, and a member of The Spruce Member Improvement Review Board.
The Pergo Outlast+ 7.48 in. W Graceland Oak Waterproof Laminate Wood Flooring is our top pick because it's designed with SpillProof technology and can withstand scratching from kids and pets.
Here are the best cheap flooring options on the market.
Best Overall: Pergo Outlast+ 7.48 in. W Graceland Oak Waterproof Laminate Wood Flooring
Several finish options available
No additional underlay required
Scratch and water resistant
Easy to install
Cannot be refinished
Who else recommends it? Bob Vila also picked Pergo Outlast+ Waterproof Laminate Wood Flooring.
What do buyers say? 300+ Home Depot reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.
Many varieties of laminate replicate the look of wood grain, without the price point of real wood flooring. Pergo Outlast+ Waterproof Laminate Wood Flooring is our top pick because it requires no additional underlayment layer and is easy to install in any part of your home. Pergo is the name brand for Perstorp, the inventor of laminate flooring, and it carries an AC4 rating, meaning the flooring is approved for residential and some light commercial use.
"Bedrooms and low-volume areas do just fine with inexpensive laminate flooring," points out Deane Biermeier, a Minnesota contractor whom we consulted for this article. "The kitchen and baths do well with an inexpensive vinyl sheet or vinyl plank flooring, as long as it’s water-resistant in the kitchen and waterproof in the bathroom. Spend the remaining budget dollars on high-traffic spaces like the living room and hallway carpet or laminate."
Pergo’s Outlast+ design withstands water and scratches from pets or children. Unlike traditional wood flooring, its wood finish is designed not to fade or wear down over time. A lifetime residential warranty is offered, and a 10-year commercial warranty is also available. This flooring features a patented Uniclic joint, which keeps the pieces together as the flooring expands and contracts with environmental changes. It’s also easy to install, but professional installation services are available if preferred.
Unlike real wood flooring, laminate flooring cannot be refinished. If the floor is damaged, you have to replace the entire floor. makes their flooring an excellent overall choice for cheap flooring.
Dimensions: 54.33 x 7.48 inches | Coverage: 16.93 square feet | Finish Type: Laminate wood flooring | Installation Method: Uniclic joint
Unlike real wood flooring, laminate flooring cannot be refinished. If the floor is damaged, you have to replace the entire floor.
Best Peel and Stick: FloorPops FP2914 Medina Peel & Stick Floor Tile
Requires no tools or adhesive
Not easily removed
Give your floor a fresh look with the fast and easy help of peel-and-stick tiles. Made of vinyl with a strong adhesive backing, this cheap flooring material requires no grout or special tools for installation. It’s a great option for a DIY flooring upgrade on a budget. Also, this cheap flooring option is used as a short-term solution until a full-scale remodel is possible. "A suitable affordable flooring has a decent wear layer thickness of more than 4mil," says our expert, Deane Biermeier, "and a good plank interlocking system that’s not too difficult to install."
FloorPops is a leading manufacturer of peel and stick tiles and offers a variety of stylish patterns and prints. The Medina tile comes in a pack of 10 tiles; each measures 12 x 12 inches, but you can cut and trim it to fit your space. The tiles are water-resistant, washable, and frequently used in bathrooms, kitchens, and entryways.
You can lay these peel and stick tiles over just about any existing flooring surface—but you can't easily remove them—the adhesive strongly bonds to the surface underneath.
Dimensions: 12 x 12 inches | Coverage: 10 square feet | Finish Type: Vinyl | Installation Method: Permanent adhesive backing
Best Bamboo: Home Decorators Collection Strand Woven Engineered Bamboo Flooring
Bamboo has become an increasingly popular option for cheap flooring, thanks to its durability, sustainability, and affordability when compared with traditional hardwood floors. Since bamboo is basically a fast-growing grass, making it into a wear-resistant flooring material requires a considerable transformation. However, the end result is a durable and strong floor that can imitate the look of many types of hardwood floors, including oak, walnut, maple, and more.
This engineered bamboo flooring from the Home Decorators Collection is strand-woven bamboo with an impressive Janka hardness rating of 3,000, meaning it resists dents more. (A best-selling option for oak hardwood flooring is rated just 1,290.) While this flooring is easy to install, thanks to click-lock edges, it lacks an underlayment, so you have to purchase that in addition to the flooring.
Dimensions: 36.02 x 4.92 inches | Coverage: 24.62 square feet | Finish Type: Bamboo, honey brown finish | Installation Method: Click-lock
Best Carpet : Foss Contour Rib 15-Pack Peel and Stick Carpet Tile
Stain and water resistant
If you’re interested in buying carpeting, consider this textured carpet from Foss. Clocking in just below $1.00 per square foot, their Contour Rib Carpet Tile series features a 0.31-inch pile height and easy-care polyester fibers. Carpets made from polyester offer excellent color retention and are not prone to fading.
This Foss carpet is treated to offer lifetime stain and soil resistance, and it also carries a lifetime limited warranty with FrayGuard technology to prevent pulls or snags. While it’s not the plushest carpet, and its polyester fibers can be prone to flattening, it makes a great pick for budget remodels or quick replacement of worn, dirty, or damaged carpeting.
Dimensions: 24 x 24 inches | Coverage: 60 square feet | Finish Type: Polyester finish carpet | Installation Method: Peel and stick
Best for Bathrooms: TrafficMaster Manvel Ash 12 in. x 12 in. Ceramic Floor and Wall Tile
Can also be used as wall tile
Less coverage per case than other options
For bathrooms on a budget, consider a low-cost ceramic tile. TrafficMaster Manvel is waterproof and stain-resistant, relieving worries about your floor swelling or buckling from shower puddles or sink splashes. The product is a classic 12 x 12-inch tile you can use not only as bathroom flooring but also as wall tiles. This stone-look ceramic tile's glazed matte finish invites easy care and maintenance. It features a Class 3 abrasion resistance rating, which means it can stand up to areas of medium to heavy foot traffic.
When choosing ceramic tile as a cheap flooring material for the bathroom, you also need to factor in the grout, backer board, and thinset. Even still, this tile's budget price makes it an obvious choice for wet rooms, where you want a durable, easy-to-clean flooring option.
Dimensions: 12 x 12 inches | Coverage: 10.67 square feet | Finish Type: Ceramic | Installation Method: Grout and backer board required
Best for Kitchen: Style Selections Waterproof Interlocking Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring
Limited lifetime residential warranty
Luxury vinyl plank flooring may sound expensive, but a budget variety, such as Style Selections Waterproof Interlocking Luxury Vinyl Plank Flooring, can give your kitchen an upscale look at less than $2.00 a square foot. Available in a variety of wood finishes, this vinyl plank flooring is stylish and affordable. This flooring has click-lock junctions for easy installation and a soundproofing backing for a quiet underfoot. However, this version from Style Selections is a thinner board and wear layer (4.4 millimeters), which means it could wear faster compared with other options. But Style Selections promises a lifetime warranty for any manufacturing issues.
The major draw for LVP flooring in kitchens? It's waterproof—the boards don’t swell or buckle when exposed to moisture from routine activities such as washing dishes or cooking. And while some other cheap flooring materials, such as ceramic, are also waterproof, a dish dropped on LVP is less likely to shatter when it hits the floor.
Dimensions: 36 x 5.91 inches | Coverage: 22.17 square feet | Finish Type: Vinyl plank flooring, slate oak color | Installation Method: Click-lock
Best for Durability: MSI White Ocean 12 in. x 24 in. Rigid Core Luxury Vinyl Tile Flooring
Pet and kid friendly
Possible variation in sizing and color
Vinyl flooring is often considered one of the more durable options for floors, since it's generally waterproof and not easily scratched or scuffed. This is a good thing since you can’t "refinish" a vinyl floor in the same way that you could hardwood flooring. However, opting for vinyl tiles gives you the option to replace a tile, in the event that it does sustain any surface damage. Keep in mind that you should order all of the flooring necessary for your home project at one time so all your flooring comes from the same color and sizing group.
Vinyl tile flooring, like this 12 x 24-inch Rigid Core Luxury Vinyl Tile from MSI, gives you an upscale look that is easy to clean and maintain. It’s ideal for high traffic areas and makes a good pick for homes with kids or pets. You can use it in any room, including areas prone to moisture such as bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry areas. This durable yet cheap flooring material comes in a variety of looks and patterns, making it easy to find a style and color to fit your decor.
Dimensions: 12 x 24 inches | Coverage: 19.37 square feet | Finish Type: Vinyl, white ocean color | Installation Method: Click-lock
Go for an easy-care and stylish laminate floor like Pergo Outlast+ 7.48 in. W Graceland Oak Waterproof Laminate Wood Flooring. Pergo laminate is waterproof and offers the look of wood at a less expensive price tag. For an easy-to-install option, consider FloorPops Vinyl Peel and Stick Tiles. These cheap vinyl tiles adhere easily to any existing floor materials but provide a classy upgrade, especially in areas like entryways, bathrooms, or kitchens.
What to Look For in Cheap Flooring Options
There are a number of different types of cheap flooring to choose from, depending on your style, budget, and comfort preferences. While hardwood, porcelain, and stone may be too pricey to be considered as inexpensive flooring options, there are still plenty of options. Vinyl tile, luxury vinyl plank (LVP), laminate, ceramic, and even bamboo are all options for solid surface cheap flooring. Carpet or carpet tiles are also affordable options if you want a more plush flooring surface.
Our expert, longtime contractor Deane Biermeier, advises being flexible in color and design preferences and always shop the flooring clearance aisle and carpet remnant rack first, especially if you’re working on small rooms or multiple rooms. "It’s almost shocking how low stores sometimes price 150 square foot, high-quality leftovers that didn’t sell!" Deane says.
If you're shopping for cheap flooring for a room with considerable water exposure or moisture, consider each option's water resistance. Kitchens and bathrooms need water-resistant flooring such as luxury vinyl plank or ceramic tile.
"Kitchens and baths do well with an inexpensive vinyl sheet or vinyl plank flooring," Biermeier says, "as long as it’s water-resistant in the kitchen and waterproof in the bathroom. Spend the remaining budget dollars on high-traffic spaces like the living room and hallway carpet or laminate."
Cost per square foot
When choosing affordable flooring, compare the cost per square foot of each material. Cheap flooring usually ranges from $1 to $2 per square foot, but sometimes even less. However, cautions contractor Deane Biermeier, "It’s easy to make the mistake of comparing two boxes of flooring by the cost of the box. Packs of flooring can have vastly different quantities."
A related factor is the warranty for each type of flooring. Some cheap flooring may offer only a short warranty period, while other options might give you up to 10 years of protection against normal wear and tear.
Can you put cheap flooring over hardwood?
Which flooring is waterproof?
For cheap flooring options, vinyl is the best option for waterproof flooring. Sheet vinyl is the most impenetrable since it typically has few or no seams. Vinyl tile and luxury vinyl plank flooring also offers excellent resilience against moisture, but keep in mind that the seams between tiles or planks may provide an entry point and allow water to seep down to the subfloor.
What color flooring shows the least dirt?
In general, floors that are very dark or very light are most likely to show dirt. Floors that have mid-range colors conceal the most dirt and dust. When choosing a tile, you can also opt for a textured or patterned tile that will obscure a measure of dirt and debris.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Erica Puisis researched and wrote this roundup. As a professional writer with experience in home improvement and interior design, she has written more than 200 articles for The Spruce since 2017. In researching this article, we also consulted Deane Biermeier, an award-winning Minnesota-based contractor and flooring expert who sits on The Spruce Home Improvement Review Board.