Rarely, if ever, will vinyl plank floor reach the level of actual wood plank prices. After all, lower prices are one of the major reasons why homeowners go the direction of luxury plank, as opposed to the real, organic wood product. So, luxury vinyl plank runs at least five or ten times less expensive than wood plank.
Luxury vinyl plank prices are comparable to ceramic/porcelain tile. With tile, you must factor in the cost of additional materials (thinset and grout), plus tile-specific tools. Luxury vinyl requires no mortar or grout, and most of the tools are ordinary shop tools. Laminate flooring and vinyl plank are in the same, relative price range.
What About Inexpensive Vinyl Plank Flooring?
Vinyl plank flooring in the rock-bottom pricing range can be found at commodity flooring retailers like BuildDirect, Lumber Liquidators, and Home Depot. This type of LVP is usually installed in workshops, laundry rooms, rental apartments, and other areas where premium flooring is not needed.
The cheapest available luxury vinyl plank tends to be luxury in name only, as it is usually 2 mm thick. In a few rare cases, it even dips down to 1 1/2 mm thick. Extremely thin LVF has little or no embossing because it is difficult, if not impossible, to emboss such thin materials.
The back of the vinyl has adhesive so that it can stick to the floor. The side of the vinyl also has adhesive so that that vinyl planks can stick to each other. Also, you will find two distinctly different products, single- or multiple-board plank:
Single: Each plank reproduces the look of a single board per plank. As an example, a vinyl plank that is 6 inches wide and 36 inches long replicates a board of the same dimensions.
Multiple: One plank reproduces the look of multiple, smaller boards per single, physical plank. As an example, a vinyl plank that is physically 6 inches wide and 36 inches long may replicate the look of six or eight boards that are thinner.
Another feature of the thin, cheap product is that, even if it does have a click/lock system, it may fail upon installation. The tongue/groove areas are structurally too thin and often will break while you try to join the planks. They may be so thin that they break when removing the planks from the carton.