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Home / Education / Buying Guide / The Complete Guide to Flooring Costs by Type

The Complete Guide to Flooring Costs by Type

guide to flooring costs by type  

With a wide variety of flooring options and flooring types, the cost of flooring varies greatly. It can change by the manufacturer, the square footage in your home and the quality of flooring you install. 

In fact, it can also vary based on flooring designs, added patterns and even if you lay flooring at a diagonal, requiring more materials. Flooring costs can even alter by season along with installation costs, also addressed in this guide. When calculating the cost of flooring, it is important to understand the entire cost of your project.

When you begin your search for the perfect flooring option, knowing your budget is key. In order to better guide you on your search, here is a complete guide on average flooring costs by type. 

Average Hardwood Flooring Costs

furnished living room hardwood floor 

Hardwood flooring makes an excellent investment for a home. Hardwood flooring offers a timeless appearance and the visuals and construction have been updated over time.

Hardwood floors can be quite versatile as well, fitting many types of climates and environments. For example, solid hardwoods excel especially well in mild climates with low humidity.

In addition, hardwoods come in various species, surface treatments, stain finishes and plank widths. Hardwood floors, both solid and engineered, typically offer planks that come in three-inch to seven-inch widths. These types of floors vary greatly, depending on the type of wood or, in the case of engineered hardwoods, the top wood veneer. 

  • Low-cost options are typically narrow width, smooth surface solid options in species that are easily sourced, such as oak, as well as engineered planks with a very thin wearlayer. You can expect to pay around $3.00 to $6.00 per square foot of product plus additional installation costs.

  • Mid-range hardwood options include oak species in solid or engineered in a 4" or 5" width, with light surface treatment options and can cost $5.00 to $10.00 per square foot plus installation costs. 

  • High-end hardwoods, like harder species such as hickory, maple and walnut, are wide width and/or offer multiple surface treatments to include scraping and distressing. Engineered options in these species with very thick wear layers also fall in this category and can start around $8.00 per square foot plus additional installation costs. 

hardwood flooring costs graphic 

Engineered hardwood flooring has lately become a popular option that has a natural hardwood top layer for a visual identical to solid hardwood. Together with multiple core layers, engineered wood floors are less likely to cup when confronted with moisture. and have the stunning authenticity of natural hardwood.

Average Waterproof Flooring Costs

Boardwalk by Beauflor

Boardwalk by Beauflor | Harbor Dusk

Waterproof flooring makes a fantastic, durable option, especially for homeowners with pets and kids. Pet owners can rest easy, knowing that newly adopted, yet-to-be-house trained puppy is okay to roam freely while you’re at work for the day.

Some of these durable, waterproof options include luxury vinyl planks and luxury vinyl tiles (LVPs and LVTs), as well as vinyl sheet flooring

Waterproof flooring is one of the most loved flooring types by homeowners everywhere. Please note, however, there is a difference between waterproof and water-resistant flooring

With such a wide range of options for waterproof flooring, the cost can vary. LVPs and LVTs can be as low as $1.75 to $5.75 per square foot, which fluctuates according to thickness, core construction, wear layer, and warranty parameters.  

On the other hand, if it’s sheet vinyl flooring you desire, this can run between $.75 to $1.99 per square foot, which is more affordable than the aforementioned. The fluctuation of sheet vinyl is typically due to the gauge (thickness), backing, and level of design detail, such as embossing, that is achieved with modern technology.

Average Luxury Plank and Tile Flooring Costs

As mentioned, luxury vinyl planks and tiles are a great option for any high traffic room of the home. Cost-wise, they are an excellent and more affordable alternative to wood, stone and ceramics.

According to certain home improvement sites, the average cost of LVPs and LVTs is between $1.75 and $5.75 per square foot and breaks down as follows:

  • Low-cost LVP prices range from $1.75 to $3.00 per square foot, but most require adhesive and are thinner construction, without waterproof properties. 

  • Mid-range LVP flooring can run on average $3.50 to $4.50 per square foot and may be a happy medium if you’re looking for a lower cost product that can handle topical spills with water resistant properties.

  • High-end LVP flooring costs start around $5.00 per square foot, often lasting much longer and is also durable enough for light commercial settings. 

luxury vinyl plank flooring costs graphic 

Average Vinyl Sheet Flooring Costs

In comparison to luxury vinyl floors, vinyl sheet flooring is an attractive and affordable option for homeowners.The recent addition of felt backing to many collections allows fast, glueless installation which is cost effective.

The one disadvantage to vinyl sheet flooring lies in its size. If you create an unsightly accident on the vinyl, it’s not as simple as replacing a plank or tile. It requires carefully cutting away the section and inserting a matching piece or, alternatively, replacing the entire sheet and floor, which is expensive in itself.   

According to RemodelingExpense, standard vinyl sheet flooring costs rest in the range of $1.75 to $5.75 per square foot. This is a fraction of the price compared to LVPs and LVTs. 

To better understand this range, here is what you can expect: 

  • Low-cost vinyl is a thinner gauge, and designs are less realistic, but offered in stone and wood looks. It can cost as low as $0.50, but the average lies around $2.50 per square foot along with the additional cost of installation.

  • Mid-range is a medium thickness with fiberglass construction in fairly realistic wood and stone visuals. For something of this nature, the average price is $3.30 per square foot plus separate installation costs.  

  • High-end vinyl can reach $4 per square foot, but these are typically much more elegant with embossed, realistic texture and designs. The gauge (thickness) is very heavy, includes a textile backing and additional warranties to cover rips, tears and mold growth may be included. Glueless installation saves on costs and can handle subfloor imperfections.  

vinyl sheet flooring costs graphic 

Average Laminate Flooring Costs

Often confused with vinyl flooring, laminate flooring is constructed of a core made out of wood composite materials.

While not waterproof, some laminate flooring options can be water-resistant, meaning you should address any spills immediately. Although this is a common misconception, its top layer offers plenty of durability, preventing the topical wear and tear. Due to this difference, it can offer a more budget-friendly option for those who do not need it to be a waterproof floor.

For the busy households of parents and pet owners, laminate flooring is a great choice, as it’s stain-resistant, fade-resistant and indentation-resistant. When it comes to cost, a quality laminate product can offer the same authentic visual as genuine hardwoods, but at a more affordable price.

Because laminate flooring is comprised of multiple synthetic layers that are bonded together, the cost is more affordable than hardwood flooring. Basically, this allows you to have the look and feel of hardwoods at a much lower cost. 

According to some sources laminate hardwood flooring costs can range from $2.50 to $4.00 per square foot and and are dependent on the quality of the wear layer and core construction. 

  • Low-cost laminate flooring has a low mm thickness and ranges in price from $2.50 to $3.00 per square foot. 

  • Mid-range laminate flooring has a thickness of about 10mm, with prices reaching more around $3.00 to $3.75 per square foot.

  • High-end laminate flooring, with about 12-14 mm thickness costs anywhere from $3.75 or more per square foot, and usually includes an attached pad and a locking system to eliminate underlayment and adhesives.

laminate flooring costs graphic 

Additional Installation Costs to Consider

Usually when you sit down with a retailer to discuss your budget and the cost of your flooring project, the installation and necessary finishing accessories will be included.  However, there may be unforeseen circumstances in your space that will add cost to both the materials used and the additional time  will drive labor costs upward. For example, your subfloor might need a little extra prep to smooth out imperfections, or it may need very involved prep and leveling products to correct uneven or damaged areas. Other costs to consider are the tear out and removal of the older floor, as well as the temporary removal and replacement of furniture. Worst case, your subfloor and floor joists may have moisture damage, which may even require a different contractor before you can get started.  When your retailer sends a technician to your home to measure, the space should be assessed and inspected to determine the necessary requirements for a smooth installation.

installing flooring closeup 

Aside from addressing preexisting conditions, installation costs can vary per square foot, based on the type of flooring, and the installation method required.  Costs will be higher for products that require adhesive, are difficult to handle, or require underlayment. You might pay more for a product with an attached pad, but it could pay off with savings on underlayment material and labor costs.

Hardwood flooring can cost about $3.50 to $4.50 per square foot for installation, based on a nailed, glued or floating application.  Vinyl sheet floors can be installed for $1.50 to $3.00 per square foot depending on whether it is full-spread glued, parameter glued, or it has a textile backing for floating.  Laminate and vinyl planks or tiles will cost $1.50 to $3.50 per square foot to install and pricing can fluctuate based on the locking mechanism, use of adhesive and the product’s ability to camouflage subfloor imperfections for the omission of extra prep work.  Remember, you may incur separate charges for moldings, specialty adhesives, vapor barriers and underlayment. Stair encasements should be priced out separately and will vary based on customization requirements.

Understanding The Importance of High-Quality Flooring 

With all these different flooring options within a wide range of costs, it might seem easy to just pick a cheap flooring type and quickly install the flooring yourself. However, flooring that is too cheap is most likely made from a low-quality or discontinued material. Additionally, these poor materials do not have the proper environmental certifications that high-quality flooring options have. So, although it might seem like a daunting task, it’s important to do your research when shopping instead of choosing the quickest option. Our flooring experts are also happy to assist with any questions you may have, from installation requests to sample order questions.

Discover Flooring to Fit Your Budget

man holding flooring plank 

As you can see, there is a wide variety of flooring options and flooring types. 

The best place to start is this guide, which should help in determining the flooring manufacturer you prefer, deciding on a flooring type that fits your budget and, at the end of the day, a style that fits your home and family as well. 

Once you have determined your preferences, the next step is to choose the right flooring dealer. Reach out to local, reputable dealers and stop by their showrooms to get a true sense of the flooring. 

For convenience, Twenty & Oak offers a dealer locator. Just type in your zip code and you’ll receive a list of dealers in your local area. From there, you can navigate a map to find Premium, Select and Standard dealers, each independently owned and operated with a physical showroom you can visit in person. 

At the dealer’s store, you can touch and feel the product. Speak with them about the options you’re considering and take advantage of their professional installation services as well. They offer invaluable advice and can steer you in the right direction to the perfect flooring. 

Interested in multiple flooring options? Reach out to the Twenty&Oak team today and we can send samples straight to your home.

Contact Us 

Twenty & Oak Experts 
Twenty & Oak Experts are a team of flooring professionals with over 150 years of combined experience in the industry. They have hands-on experience with all flooring types and bring inside industry know-how to homeowners in the Southeast. 
 
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