questionswhat is the best overall deal on kitchen flooring?

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I saw an amazing hard wood floor darker with deep grain. It was accented by random black marble with green veins...Not what your asking for but amazing.

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@caffeine_dude: link? Ideas are always good. Even if they will only work in some magical future where I am a millionaire ;)

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We had ours done in porcelain tile 2 years ago, and tile is SO inexpensive right now(as is labor- times are tight!) I'd been quoted about 10 years ago nearly double what I just paid. If you've ever thought ceramic, it's a great time.
Now, at work it's a different story. I had a crew come in and strip old vinyl flooring off, grind the concrete smooth and stain and finish the floor. Kinda trendy, but it looks great and it's concrete!
Oh, and cheaper than more vinyl.

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If you don't mind it being "cold", it's hard to beat ceramic/porcelain tile for cost and durability. You can DIY if you have a wet tile saw; I opted to buy instead of rent ... I paid $10 for a closeout "casa de ceramica" wet tile saw. I figure that if it lasted for one bathroom, I got my money's worth. It's lasted for 4 bathrooms (did my neighbor's too), and I resold it for $15 on craigslist. :)

With that said, is your kitchen slab-on-grade or is it a wood subfloor? If it's the latter, then is it solid enough to NOT flex at all? If there's one major pitfall with hard surfaces, it's that it must be installed on a solid base.

If the subfloor is an issue, and DIY friendliness will be a higher priority, then consider resilient vinyl instead.

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I will have to agree with @narfcake. Ceramic may be "cold" depending on your location and personal sensitive level but it is simple to keep clean, relatively inexpensive per square foot and very durable.