Before you jump the gun and order hardwood floors, make sure you have taken into account all the different things that you are going to have to pay for. While the wood flooring is obvious, there are a lot more facets that have to be accounted for.
Labor Costs – if you do not possess the skill to do this yourself, you are going to have to get a professional installer to do the job. This is a very specific trade and that of course means that you usually pay through the nose for it. However, you may not need them to do all aspects of the job or you can use different materials that will cut down on these costs.
To put down a standard floor, your wood will probably be cheaper, but the installation will cost you significantly more. They are going to have to lay down a sub floor, nail down the boards and then of course there is clean up, staining and a finish to put down. This is very tedious work that takes up a lot of time. Be prepared to spend about $7 per square foot to have all of this done.
Supplies – as we stated above, this is about more than just wood. The flooring itself can cost you anywhere from about $1.50-$4.00 a square foot, but there is still plenty more to buy. You are going to need nails or some other type of faster, glue, plywood, polyurethane and a lot of little things like brushes and tarp. They may not cost much individually, but it starts to add up pretty quick.
How you can save money all around here is by choosing a product that does not require a lot of work to install. Standard oak flooring might cost you $1.50 per square foot, but engineered flooring may cost $3.25. This is an additional $1.75 per square foot, but the installation fees will go down significantly. In most cases, floating hardwood floors are the cheapest to install because they are quick and easy. Your install price may go down to $2 per square foot, so you are saving about $3.25 per square foot by using this.
Furniture moving – this is probably something that you never even thought of, but if they have to move it, they are going to charge you for it. If they have to move it from room to room as they complete them, you are really going to get torched. It may be cheaper to store the furniture that it would be to have them move it throughout the day. Portable units have become very reasonably prices over the last few years and are a legitimate option here.
Now you know why some people cringe when you start talking about hardwood floors. While the price may sting a little bit on the front end, you will find that it is a true investment in the house. They will increase the overall appearance of the house and the money you will save on not replacing carpet every few years will have these paying for themselves in a few years.