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How Much Does Wood Flooring Cost? Types, Installation, and Maintenance

31/08/2023

Wooden floors can elevate the comfort and aesthetic appeal of any room you install them in, courtesy of their timelessness and elegance. Not only that, but they’re also resilient and can last for decades with proper care. How much does wood flooring cost, though?

If you’re planning your next renovation project and wondering about that, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll explain the different available wood options, how much each costs, and more.

Let’s start!

Types of Wood Flooring and Their Cost

Below are the most commonly installed wood floor types. The price ranges reflect the cost of materials only! Installation can add another £15 to £30 per square metre.

Engineered

Engineered wood flooring costs around £20 to £80 per square metre.

It’s a type of wood flooring composed of a thin hardwood veneer layer. This layer is bonded with layers of plywood, fibreboard, or oriented strand board. It’s more stable and moisture-resistant than solid wood, but the materials it's composed of aren’t as durable, justifying its lower price point.

Another downside to engineered wood is that you can’t resurface it as much due to its veneer layer’s thickness. Still, it’s an excellent option for homeowners looking for a cheaper alternative to solid wood or a more authentic flooring solution for moisture-prone areas.

Solid

Solid wood flooring starts at £35 but can go well over £100 per square metre, depending on the wood species. It’s among the most expensive flooring solutions, courtesy of its high-end, luxurious appearance and appeal.

Your solid wood floor will be made of planks of natural wood cut from a single piece of timber. Each wood species has its own characteristics. We’re talking about durability, appearance, and resistance. So, that’s one thing to consider when investing in a solid wood floor.

Other than that, you should be aware that it’s also prone to warping and shrinking due to temperature and humidity changes.

Parquet

Parquet is among the most elegant flooring solutions available due to its rich history and decorative nature. It comes at a steeper cost, though. Material-wise, its price ranges from £20 to £80 per square metre, but it depends on the brand and wood species.

Labour is the primary concern when installing parquet, as it’s pieces of wood arranged in geometric patterns.

Contemporary and highly decorated designs can set you back several thousand unless you opt for prefabricated parquet tiles that already feature designs within them.

Laminate

Laminate is one of the cheapest options available for budget-conscious homeowners looking to enhance the look of their floors because it offers a multitude of options.

While low-end brands start at £15 per square metre, you can find high-end laminate that feels and performs great around the £80 price mark. It’s made of synthetic materials that mimic the appearance of hardwood.

Despite that, it’s durable, easy to install, and decently resistant to scratches and stains. It’s not completely waterproof, though; clean up any water or spills quickly so as not to damage it.

Vinyl

Similarly to laminate, vinyl offers an alternative for budget-conscious homeowners looking to give character to their rooms while navigating the expenses that authentic hardwood floors bring.

It’s a synthetic material that can imitate the appearance of wood. But a few advantages it has over wood include its comfort, ease of cleaning, lifespan, and durability.

It starts at a very affordable price of £10 per square metre, but higher-quality rolls and LVT can cost up to £60. It’s also waterproof and more resistant to fading and warping. Remember that it’s less eco-friendly; vinyl is made from materials that emit Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).

Reclaimed

This wood is salvaged from old buildings and barns, where it was perhaps redundant. It can be anything from a piece of furniture to even a boat or trailer. So, the quality, cost, and appearance of the wood depend on the source and its condition.


Generally, it costs from £20 to £80 because, despite being real wood, it’s recycled—pests, hidden dangers, and such are concerns. But if eco-friendliness and uniqueness are qualities you’d love your next wooden floor to have, reclaimed wood is an option.

Wood-Effect Tiles

Wood-effect tiles are ceramic or porcelain tiles that carry the design of a wooden floor. Not only are they customisable, but their durability, resistance to moisture and stains, and waterproof quality are welcome among homeowners.

Compared to other solutions, they’re mid-range in terms of cost. They start at £10, but higher-end brands may cost up to £60 per square metre. Of course, such brands are better at mimicking the appearance of different wood species with their realistic textures and patterns.

Does the Pattern and Design of the Wood Floor Change the Cost?

Yes, it can.

Complex patterns are more intricate and elaborate, requiring more skill and time from your contractor to install. Expect to throw in an extra £10 to £50 per square metre on top of installation costs because of them.

Some common wood flooring patterns and styles homeowners love include:

  • Herringbone: This pattern consists of rectangular wood pieces arranged in a zig-zag or V shape.
  • Chevron: This pattern is similar to herringbone. But this time, the wood pieces are cut at an angle to form a continuous line.
  • Basket Weave: Farmhouse and rustic style lovers opt for the basket weave pattern. In it, the wood pieces are arranged in alternating horizontal and vertical groups to mimic the appearance of woven baskets.

Does the Finish of the Wood Flooring Affect the Cost?

Yes!

Some treatments are more expensive and require frequent applications. They can enhance your floor’s beauty and protect it from wear and tear. Some finishes and treatments include:

  • Oil: Oil is natural and eco-friendly. It enhances the wood’s grain and colour but requires regular maintenance and reapplication. It costs from £2 to £10 per square metre.
  • Wax: Wax forms a protective layer on the surface of the wood that increases its durability, makes it water-resistant, and gives it a soft, smooth feel. However, it’s more prone to scratches and stains. It costs from £5 to £15 per square metre.
  • Varnish: This finish consists of a resin and a solvent that harden atop the wood. Besides creating an attractive glossy or matte effect on your floor, it also increases its durability. It costs £10 to £20 per square metre.
  • Lacquer: Lacquer is a modern finish and one of the most expensive ones. Your wood floor will end up with a clear and shiny coating when it’s sprayed or brushed on it. It’s easy to apply and repair, but it's also prone to heat and moisture damage. It costs from £15 to £25 per square metre.
  • Stain: Staining your wooden floor is an affordable way to enhance its colour and appearance. The pigments and chemicals used in this process can impact its durability and resistance, though. Staining costs from £5 to £15 per square metre.

The prices above reflect material costs only! You may need to pay an extra £10 to £20 per square metre for labour.

Does the Species of Wood Flooring Affect the Cost?

You guessed it!

Some types of wood have different prices depending on their availability and durability. Similarly, some species just look and perform better than others.

Here are a few examples:

  • Oak: Oak is widespread thanks to its durability and versatility, making it the first choice for many homeowners looking for a solid wood floor. It costs around £35 to £100 per square metre.
  • Walnut: Walnut is darker and richer in colour. It looks more elegant and luxurious than other materials, and its density and resistance to damage further complement it. It costs £50 to £120 per square metre.
  • Maple: Maple is lighter and brighter than other wood species. It’s also strong, clean, and durable against several types of damage. It costs from £40 to £100 per square metre.
  • Pine: Pine is a soft and rustic wood species. Despite its ease of installation, it’s prone to denting and scratching. It’s among the cheapest wood species, costing around £20 to £60 per square metre.
  • Bamboo: This species is renewable and eco-friendly. Its ease of maintenance, durability, resistance to moisture, and exotic appearance make it a favourite among stylish homeowners. It’s also affordable, costing around £25 to £70 per square metre.

How Much Does It Cost to Install Wood Flooring?

It depends.

Your choices are nearly unlimited, considering the number of available wood species, flooring types, patterns, and finishes. You should also consider whether you need to remove your current flooring or level your subfloor.

First, consider the cost of materials. For example, engineered wood is cheaper than solid wood, so installing an engineered wood floor will be much more affordable.

Experts will also suggest buying more material than your floor requires to be prepared for any eventualities. 10% more than your floor space needs should suffice.


Labour costs are next. Most professionals will charge you between £15 and £30 per square metre in installation costs. However, these rates are estimates; different contractors will charge you different prices.

Contractors will also charge you extra if you need to remove your current flooring or skirting boards, level or treat your floor, install underlayment, or trim your doors. Except for trimming doors, which is slightly more expensive, these services shouldn’t exceed £30 per square metre.

To sum it up, installing a wooden floor in a 17.09 m² room in the U.K. can cost anywhere from £1,200 for cheaper solutions like laminate to over £8,000 if you’re using high-end Macassar Ebony.

If you’re stumped, contact us. We’ll give you a free quote and help you find the best solution for your situation.

Does the Room the Wood Flooring Is Being Installed in Affect The Cost?

Yes.

Some rooms are more complex to renovate than others, either due to size, design, or condition.

Large rooms will require more material and labour, increasing the cost. Similarly, some rooms may have more obstacles or corners, making the installation more difficult and costly.

If a room’s floor is damaged, uneven, or needs to be removed, the extra preparation work will incur additional costs. The room’s location plays a role, too. The more accessible and convenient a room is, the easier it is for your contractor to renovate it.

Do You Need to Buy and Install Underlay for Wood Flooring?

It depends!

You need underlay with some wood flooring types, such as laminate and engineered wood, as well as for rough, uneven, and damp subfloors.

Some flooring types usually don’t need underlayment, as is the case for solid wood, unless your subfloor is damaged or you’d like to enhance the flooring’s comfort and durability. But, for the most part, underlay is recommended for most wood flooring installations.

Can You Install Wooden Floors Yourself to Save Money?

Yes, but we recommend against it if you’re not skilled.

Let’s see some factors to consider when DIYing.

  • Installation: Installing wooden floors requires excellent DIY skills, tools, and careful preparation. For example, installing a laminate or vinyl wood floor is much easier than installing a solid wood floor.
  • Repairs: Repairing your subfloor by yourself if it’s damaged or uneven is challenging; it’s best to leave such a job to a professional. Installing underlayment isn’t as hard, though.
  • Tools: Professional contractors have expensive, professional-grade tools that ensure the most precise installation possible. They include nail guns, circular saws, jigsaws, and so forth. You might also need special tools for some wood types, such as a moisture metre or a Dremel tool.
  • Time: Contractors work as a team and are experienced; they can redo your entire floor in several hours or a few days at the most. Working alone and with limited DIY skills, it can take you several days or weeks at the minimum.

However, if you’re confident in your abilities and have all the necessary tools and materials, you’ll save a lot on labour costs.

Does It Cost Money to Maintain Wood Flooring?

Yes, but it depends on your flooring type; you must maintain some floors more frequently than others.

Also, factors like refinishing, sanding, and restoring your floor play a role in the final maintenance cost.

What Is the Cost of Wood Flooring Restoration or Renovation?

Your need to restore your floor depends on its condition. Sometimes, cleaning and repolishing it would suffice. Other times, you might need an expert to repair it.

Cleaning is a given; you must clean your floor regularly to remove dust, dirt, and stains. Fortunately, this isn’t expensive, as most homeowners have a vacuum cleaner, a broom, and a mop, and the cost of cleaning products doesn’t exceed £15.

Some wood flooring types require frequent polishing to maintain their durability and visual appeal. You can do this yourself by buying a polishing pad and a suitable polish product; contact your manufacturer for advice regarding which products to use. Wood floor polish costs around £20 per litre, but expect cost differences across brands.

Renovations can be fairly expensive. After all, you’ll likely redo the floor of an entire room. Depending on your current floor’s and subfloor’s condition, your desired floor type, material, and finish, and the size of your room, you can expect renovations to cost from £800 to well over £6,000.

What Is the Cost of Sanding Wood Floors?

Sanding wood floors is usually part of the refinishing process. Usually, this process costs around £20 or more per square metre.

The primary benefit of sanding your floor is that it evens it out and removes any scratches and stains. But it also opens up the possibility of choosing a different refinishing method.

What Is the Cost of Refinishing Wood Floors?

You should refinish your wood flooring every few years to improve its appearance, durability, and your home’s value. Experts suggest that you do this every five years.

This process involves sanding, staining, and sealing the wood flooring, which can cost you from £20 to £35 per square metre. Your choice of finish can also add to the final bill; lacquer is significantly more expensive than oil.

What Is the Cost to Repair Damaged Wood Flooring?

Repairs can be pricier. You’ll likely need to replace your planks or tiles if you damage your flooring. So, buying new materials and hiring a contractor are to be expected. The costs will depend on your floor type and condition and the material used.

Repairing damaged floors may require a few touch-ups that range from £100 to well over £1,000.

What Is the Most Expensive Wood Flooring?

A lacquered solid wood floor is the most expensive flooring option, especially if you pick a luxurious wood species.

As for materials, zebra wood (~£210/m² or more) and Macassar Ebony (~£1260/m² or more) are among the most expensive wood species and will significantly increase your flooring costs if you opt for them.

What Is More Expensive, Solid Wood or Engineered Wood?

Solid wood is more expensive than engineered wood. The former costs around £35 to £100, while the latter is cheaper at £20 to £80 per square metre.

What Is the Cheapest Wood Flooring?

The cheapest “wood” floors are vinyl and laminate. They’re synthetic floors that mimic the look of natural wood and start at around £10 to £80 per square metre.

What Is the Cost of a Wooden Floor vs. Vinyl?

You can get the cheapest vinyl option for about £10 per square metre, but higher-end vinyl can cost upwards of £45 per square metre.

This makes it much cheaper than wood floors, which start at a similar price and can exceed £100 per square metre.

What Is the Cost of a Wooden Floor vs. Laminate?

Laminate is among the cheapest flooring materials, but higher-end options can cost as much as some mid-quality wood species.

You can also install a laminate floor that mimics the appearance of wood. Low-quality laminate starts at around £15, while high-end laminate tiles can reach £80.

What Is the Cost of a Wooden Floor vs. Carpet?

Carpet flooring costs from £4 to £40 per square metre. Premium options can cost upwards of £50. This makes it less expensive than most wooden floors, which range from £15 to £100 per square metre.

What Is the Cost of a Wooden Floor vs. Concrete?

Concrete floors are more expensive than wooden floors, primarily due to the polishing process. Since it has to be poured, polished, and then sealed, it’ll cost you £135 per square metre on average.

Most wooden floors don’t exceed £100 per square metre unless you opt for a rare species.

Wrapping Up

Despite its high cost, installing a wooden floor in one of your rooms is among the best ways to give it a touch of elegance and warmth. While budget-conscious owners have more affordable options, such as engineered wood and laminate, solid wood and parquet floors are available to those willing to go all in.

At Ultimate Flooring, we deliver exceptional flooring options and truly bespoke service at competitive prices. Visit us for all your flooring needs!

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