How much does wood floor installation cost?
Rustic, elegant, timeless - there are many design benefits to having a wooden floor, as well as more practical ones. Wooden floors are hard-wearing and easy to clean, and are a popular choice of flooring in both modern and traditional homes. Before you rip up your carpets or scrap the lino though, you’ll want to know what typical flooring costs are, so we’ve prepared this guide to take you through everything you need to know.
There are three main kinds of wooden flooring: laminate flooring, engineered wooden flooring, and solid wood, or hardwood flooring. Laminate flooring is made up of a thin strip of plastic with an image of wood grain on it, atop a piece of MDF. Engineered wooden floors are made of real wood veneer which can be sanded and treated, and can be fixed above a concrete floor. Solid wood floors are whole planks of wood that are nailed down to a subfloor frame installed below. They all have their benefits and drawbacks - in this article, we will focus on engineered wood floors and solid wood floors.
Engineered wood flooring prices
Engineered wood floors, often known as composite wood floors, are very popular, being hard-wearing and relatively easy to maintain. They do not expand and contract as much as solid wood, meaning they are more useful in rooms like kitchens and bathrooms, and can be placed on top of a concrete floor.
Prices for engineered wooden floors vary according to the style and quality of the product you purchase. At the very cheapest end, you might be able to buy engineered wooden floors for around £20 per square metre, going up to around £50 per square metre for a very high-end product. A rule of thumb for the cost of installing a wooden floor is often said to be double the price of the product, however, for very expensive flooring, this does not quite hold true - we would expect installation costs to come out to around £15 to £30 per square metre, depending on where you live and the scale and complexity of the job. There will also be additional costs, such as underlay, which you can read more about below. For a 5m x 5m room, installing an engineered wooden floor, with a cost of £30 per square metre for the floor itself and £20 per square metre for installation would cost around £1,400, taking extras into account.
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Hardwood flooring prices
Hardwood flooring uses real planks of wood to create an impressive and solid floor. There are many kinds of wood that can be used, from oak and maple to pine and walnut, each with different possible finishes and treatments. They can require some maintenance, such as waxing or varnishing, to keep them at their best, but they can last for decades and often add value to a property.
As you may expect, solid wood floors are more expensive than their engineered counterparts. Cheaper woods, such as pine, can be found for under £30 per square metre, but rarer and more high quality woods like walnut can cost in excess of £80 per square metre for the best quality examples. With fitting costs, this can mean a 5m x 5m room could cost around £2,750 using top-end materials.
Other flooring installation costs to consider
There are a number of other elements to laying a wooden floor that can contribute to the final cost of the job, depending on your particular situation.
If you are removing carpet prior to laying a new floor, tradespeople will typically charge for removing and disposing of this, though it is something you can do yourself. Similarly removing skirting boards is often necessary to ensure a neater finish - and if you have to buy new skirting boards, or wooden beading, this will incur an extra material cost, of around £5 to £10 per metre depending on the material. Door trimming can cost around £50 per door.
If the floor where you need to lay the wood is uneven, your flooring fitter may need to level it using screed, which can cost up to £20 per square metre depending on how much work needs to be done. Underlay can also be put down to help beneath a wooden floor, which is typically less than £5 per square metre, while a damp proof membrane, which can be laid over a concrete sub-floor to protect the wood, is usually only around £20 for an average room.
It is also worth remembering that you will always need to order extra flooring than the exact dimensions of your room suggest - a good rule of thumb is ordering 10% extra than needed, to cover all eventualities.