Flooring-filter: Talk to me about linoleum in general, and Marmoleum brand linoleum in particular. Is it nice? Is it DIY-able? What should I know before choosing it for our kitchen?
So we're looking to replace our current, ugly, vinyl kitchen floor with something non-vinyl. Our original idea was ceramic tile ($2/sqft), but our contractor is claiming we'll have to replace our Luan subfloor with concrete backing board in order to stabilize the tile, bringing the final total to ~$13/sqft installed (!). At those prices, we've been considering alternatives, and Marmoleum in particular has looked interesting. We love the environmental friendliness, its warmth and softness underfoot. The material itself is pretty expensive, though ($6/sqft), so in order to make it competitive with tile we'd have to be able to keep our existing subfloor and DIY the installation.
I'm worried, though, because while I really really want to love Marmoleum, both the installation and the material itself get perplexingly mixed reviews on sites like this one
. There seems to be some concern, for instance, that it bubbles up when installed by anyone but a super-gifted and experienced professional, and that regardless of installation the material is hard to clean and not very durable.
If you've got a lino floor yourself, or know of anyone who does, I'd love to hear some more reliable perspectives on this. In particular, is linoleum or Marmoleum attractive/comfortable/durable? Does it work with DIY installation? And is there anything else (alternative brands, caveats, tips and tricks) I should know before I make this choice?
If it helps, our decisionmaking criteria are (1) durability/livability, (2) cost, and (3) aesthetics, in that order. Thanks!