How Much Does It Cost to Install 1000 Sq. Feet of Hardwood Floors?

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Hardwood flooring is quickly becoming a popular trend in home design and renovation. This should be no surprise, after all, hardwood floors are durable, stylish, versatile, and provide a clean and aesthetically pleasing look to your home.

So, if you’re planning to remodel your home and want to know how much it costs to install hardwood flooring, right down to the average price of wood per square foot, you’ve come to the right place. Just continue reading and by the end of this article, you’ll know everything there is to know about laying down hardwood floors, ranging from installation costs to flooring contractors.

How Much Does it Cost to Install 1000 sq. ft of Flooring?

This question is often asked and tackling it’s no easy task. Based on the current prices and costs of wood flooring, installing 1 square foot of hardwood can range in price from $6 to $13. Multiply this by 1000 and you’re looking at a range of $6,000 to $13,000 for material.

Engineered wood of a higher quality can cost between $6 to $15 which brings the range between $6,000 and $15,000 for material.

You also have to factor in labor which averages between $3 to $5 per square foot. For 1000 square feet, the cost of labor is estimated to cost you between $3,000 and $5,000. Your location, method of installation, and delivery costs may also impact these numbers. 

So, given the costing breakdown above, it will cost you between $9,000 to $20,000 to install 1000 square feet of traditional hardwood flooring.

How Much Does it Cost to Replace 1000 sq. ft of Flooring?

The cost of replacing 1000 sq. ft of flooring is estimated to be around $10,000 to $30,000 which is greater than the cost of simply installing it. This estimate is just that, an estimate, because you also have to consider the prep work of replacing your wood floors. For example, the removal of the previous flooring, moving the debris out of the home, and its safe disposal which can cost you more depending on the contractors you use.

In case you’re unsure whether you should replace your hardwood floors or not, read up on our guide on how you can tell if your hardwood floors are beyond repair.

Types and Grades of Wood

The variation in the pricing of hardwood floor installation occurs due to the different grades of wood flooring. There are 3 grades, and these are:

1. High Tier

The highest quality hardwood lies in this tier. Examples of this wood are mahogany and Brazilian walnut. While these are incredibly costly, they’re worth every penny. Their appearance is simply unmatched by any other tier of wood.

2. Mid Tier

The woods in this category are decent, serviceable, and not too costly. You’ll find these in most average households today. Examples of this mid-tier grade wood are oak, cherry, and teak.

3. Low Tier

This is the cheapest grade on this list and is very affordable. Examples of wood in this grade are pine and poplar and installation costs are also fairly low. You’ll notice, however, that they lack the impact and feel that the other two grades bring to your home.

If you’re looking into hardwood flooring for your kitchen specifically, check out our guide to the best hardwood floor types for your kitchen.

Engineered Hardwood vs. Traditional Wood

Engineered hardwood is also differently priced. The difference between traditional (solid) wood and engineered wood is that traditional wood is mostly gathered whereas engineered hardwood is constructed and synthetic, consisting of several layers of quality hardwood. 

Engineered hardwood is also more resistant to warping and rotting compared to traditional wood, but what deters most people from purchasing engineered wood flooring is the price tag associated with it. 

If you want a more in-depth look at the similarities and differences between traditional solid hardwood flooring and engineered hardwood flooring, read our head-to-head comparison of solid vs. engineered hardwood, it covers pretty much everything about the two.

Labor Costs of Installing Hardwood Floors

The labor cost involved with installing hardwood floors is generally around $1,500 to $2,500. It takes longer to install wood flooring of a higher tier or of a specific pattern, such as herringbone, due to the additional wastage of wood caused by the angled pattern and the extra time it takes to measure out and place the wood in an angled manner. 

Labor costs of installing hardwood floors can involve:

1. Flooring Contractors

In order to properly install hardwood flooring, you should contact a contractor who does flooring. Contractors charge their own fees, which often cover around 20%-25% of the overall floor installation costs, however, they make finding additional necessary personnel, such as architects or carpenters, easier and even help you get cheaper rates due to the contract.

2. Architects and Carpenters

The price of installing wood flooring is also affected by carpenters and architects who will manage your installation with the help of your room layout and additional blueprints. They’ll also help you redesign the layout of your room if you want, but you’ll be spending around $200-$250 an hour for these services.

3. Other Costs

In case you’re remodeling your home you’ll also be covering additional costs, including the price of removing existing flooring, repairing any damaged foundation, and relocating and moving the previous floor in your home after it’s been removed. Doing it alone is too difficult, which is why I’d recommend forking out an additional $550 for these services.

Reducing the Cost of Installing Hardwood Flooring

You might be unwilling to go through with the installation of hardwood floors after hearing the costs I mentioned above. While hardwood flooring is costly, it’s also possible to reduce these costs. I’ve listed some methods below through which you can reduce the cost of installing a brand-new hardwood floor in your home.

1. Choose Wisely

The best way to reduce your installation cost is to choose cheaper wood for your floor. While you’re sacrificing some quality, you’re also saving a lot of money. High and mid-tier wood grades can be extremely expensive when you have them installed by flooring contractors and rack up a lot of external fees. 

Additionally, if you want patterned floorings such as herringbone or parquet you’ll have to pay these contractors a lot more.

It’s important to consider the sizes of hardwood flooring as well. Try to opt for industry-standard measurements when it comes to wood thickness, width, and length. Any modifications to these will cost you more money and installation will use the default widths and lengths of wood so let these measurements be the ones you use for your home.

Choosing the cheaper options is the easiest way to save money, and I do believe that having hardwood flooring in your home is far better than not having it at all.

2. Manage the Heavy Lifting

It’ll be a lot cheaper to install these floors if you can somehow manage the heavy lifting yourself. Flooring contractors can charge ridiculous amounts for simply moving furniture, so having these things done in advance can save you time and most importantly, money.

3. DIY

I’d really rather recommend that you hire a professional to install hardwood floors, but if you absolutely have no options left, you should look into basic carpentry tools such as table saws and learn how to use them properly. 

If you’re going to do it all yourself you should also use engineered floating floors because these floors are far more forgiving towards rookie carpenters and you’ll have a much easier time fixing any mistakes you make.

How Long Does it Take to Lay 1000 Square Feet of Hardwood?

Another question that most people ask is how long will it take before I can walk on my brand-new floors? This question is also rather complicated, but far less so than the previous one about hardwood flooring cost. 

All homes are different, and the type of hardwood floor you choose for your home can have a large impact on the time it takes to install the floor. Some flooring can snap into place, making installation easy whereas other flooring may require careful measurements and placements which can make installation difficult.

A rough estimate would be approximately 10-12 days to fully install the new flooring. These days consist of two important phases: hardwood floor acclimation and hardwood floor installation. Allow me to elaborate below.

1. Hardwood Floor Acclimation

The hardwood acclimation phase is all about adjusting the moisture content of the flooring to match your surroundings by exposing your wood planks to the humidity in the environment. 

Laying out your planks to acclimate to the environment is an important phase because if your planks turn out to be too dry when they’re installed, they can expand and bulge upward. Conversely, if they’re too wet they can shrink in size and cause cracks to appear.

This is why you want to make sure your flooring is adjusted to your home before it’s installed. I’d recommend waiting at least 8-10 days to ensure that your planks have fully adapted to your new home. 

You can spend this time wisely by prepping the rest of the room for the installation of the floor. Alternatively, if you’re using engineered wood planks instead, the acclimation process of the wood can take significantly less time.

2. Hardwood Floor Installation

The hardwood installation phase consists of actually installing the hardwood floor once it’s done adjusting to the new environment it’ll be in. Normally, a 3–4 person flooring crew can lay down 1000 square feet of flooring per day with ease, but this can change depending upon the size of the flooring crew and any obstacles that get in the way. 

It may take longer if a lot of furniture or obstacles get in the way, such as staircases or fixtures in the wall. If you’ve requested the contractors to install the flooring in a certain pattern, such as parquet, it can take even longer to be done installing the floor. Pre-finished flooring is easier to install whereas unfinished flooring can take a lot longer to install.

Benefits of Installing Hardwood Floors

Despite the costs, I highly recommend installing hardwood floors in your home. Everyone desires the elegance and warmth they bring to homes; their durability and versatility are unmatched when compared to other flooring types. Additional benefits of hardwood floors include:

1. Easy to Maintain

Hardwood flooring is a low-maintenance flooring and is easy to clean compared to carpeting. Apart from the occasional sweeping and mopping, these floors are very easy to maintain. Making them look clean and shiny is a fairly simple task.

2. Easy To Repair

Hardwood flooring is sturdy and reliable, requiring little to no repair. Even if damaged, it is easy to replace the surface with planks to make it look just as good as it was before. Fixing the damage done to other flooring types can be a difficult task.

3. Increased Property Value

Hardwood flooring can even increase your home’s resale value. If it’s properly installed, it can last for decades to come which will make it a valuable long-term investment in your home. If you want to know more about what kind of hardwood floor will increase your property value the most, check out our guide on what color of hardwood floor is best for resale

Installing 1000 Square Feet of Hardwood Floors

Well, that’s pretty much it. I’ve covered all the topics regarding the installation of hardwood flooring and I hope that you can now make an informed decision about installing hardwood flooring in your home using all the knowledge I’ve provided you in this article. Choose wisely!

If you liked this article, make sure to share it with your friends! If you have any thoughts you’d like to share, please leave a comment in the section below. I’d love to read them!

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Joe McGuinty
I’ve been working with floors for over 12 years. I started as a flooring contractor, primarily in materials selection. Then, I switched careers into accounting, so my wife and I began buying, renovating, and re-selling homes on the side. You’d be surprised how much value you can add to a home simply by adding new floors.

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