Are you looking to refinish your hardwood flooring and wondering how much it is going to cost? Particularly, how much does it cost to refinish 1000 square feet of a hardwood floor?
This article will discuss everything you need to know about hardwood refinishing costs? How do the prices vary, what is the national average, and how can you save some money during the process?
How much does it cost to refinish 1000 square feet of hardwood floors?
The average cost of refinishing 1000 square feet of hardwood floor is between $2500 and $8500. This estimate is not as simple as it seems. Many factors are responsible for the increase/decrease in the total cost.
How much does it cost to refinish 1 square foot of hardwood floor?
The national average cost for refinishing 1 square feet hardwood floor is $3 to $8.
Refinishing Hardwood Floor Costs – An estimate
- National Average: $1400 – $1500
- Average Cost Range: $1250 – $1750
- Low-End Cost: $500
- High-End Cost: $5000
Let’s learn more about the costing process!
Factors Affecting the Hardwood Floor Refinishing Cost
Room Size/House Area
The final cost will depend on room size or the size of the area being refinished. For example, refinishing cost for a 12 x 12 (144 square feet) foot room will vary between $432 and $1,152. The price can also vary depending on other factors like moving furniture, damaged pieces, staining, etc.
Refinishing costs are usually higher in urban areas because the cost of living is higher. The contractor may also factor in transportation costs if the work location is in a far-fetched remote area.
Labor costs play a critical role in final cost evaluation. Factors like how much prep is needed, furniture relocation, how much sanding is required, and your home’s accessibility affect the end cost. Labor costs account for the biggest tab in the invoice if you hire a contractor to do the work.
The material costs include tools for preparation, what tools will be used during the work, the quality of materials you are using during refinishing, stains, and the number of coats. Large areas will have higher refinishing costs compared to smaller rooms or refinishing a few portions of your home.
The preparation involves preparing hardwood floors for refinishing. Hardwood floors usually last for 8-10 years. However, several pieces get damaged due to usage frequency, furniture placement, deep scratches, fading, and water damage. These pieces need to be replaced and need more preparation before execution. It increases the project’s final cost.
Sanding is required when there are deep scratches/stains on the floor. The estimated sanding cost is $0.5 – $3 per square foot. Sanding is also important to let the new polish/stain stick on the hardwood floor.
Staining hardwood floors varies from $1 to $4 per square foot. The stain’s quality and quantity/type dominate the total staining costs. You can find a stain for $40/gallon or $100/gallon. It all depends on the quality of finish.
The last step in a refinishing project is applying a coat on your hardwood floors. Depending upon the type of hardwood floor in your home, you will either go for oil-based or water-based polyurethane. The price of one gallon of polyurethane costs from $20 to $ 50. The average cost of recoating the floor with polyurethane is $1 to $2.
Additional factors like floor condition, repair, carpet removal, furniture movement, and cleaning also impact the final refinishing cost. There are some tasks in it that you can do yourself to keep a check on the final cost. These tasks usually involve carpet removal, furniture movement and post-refinishing cleanup.
Refinishing Cost According to the type of Hardwood Floors
The refinishing costs don’t change much due to the type of hardwood floor installed in your home. Some hardwood types may need special care when sanding and working on them, but these don’t affect the overall cost much. The contractor may charge you $0.5 to $1 extra for some wood types. Let’s check out the estimated costs for different types of hardwood for one square foot and 1000 square feet.
Type of Hardwood Flooring
1 Square Feet Cost
1000 Square Feet Cost
$3 - $5
$3000 - $5000
$3 - $5
$3000 - $5000
$3 - $6
$3000 - $6000
$3 - $5
$3000 - $5000
$4 - $7
$4000 - $7000
$6 - $8
$6000 - $8000
$6 - $8
$6000 - $8000
Refinishing Hardwood Floor Cost: How to Save Money
Many people save money by hiring a cheap contractor. However, we don’t recommend this. You can still cut some costs without compromising on quality. Here are a few tips that can help you save a lot.
Consult Multiple Contractors: Get estimates from at least 5-6 contractors in your area before hiring one. Make sure you discuss all the costs, including any hidden costs. Don’t forget to check the contractor’s reputation, references and experience.
Pre/Post Refinishing Tasks:Do these tasks yourself. Ask the contractor not to include additional costs like removing carpets and moving furniture. Similarly, do the post refinishing work, like vacuuming, cleaning, and mopping the floors. Many contractors charge extra for these tasks.
Frequently Asked Questions
When do I need to refinish my hardwood floors?
The average life of a high-quality hardwood floor is 8-10 years. The exact timeline for refinishing hardwood floors varies from one case to another. The critical factors in this decision are the usage pattern, scratches on the floor, dullness, and water/UV damage.
Considering all the factors listed above and supposing normal usage and no water damage, it is recommended to refinish the hardwood floor after 7-8 years of installation.
Refinishing vs. Replacing Hardwood Floors; which is less costly and the better decision?
Installing new hardwood floors costs between $8 and $14, while replacing costs $3 to $8 per foot.When calculated for 1,000 square feet, the difference is substantial. Moreover, refinishing hardwood floors instead of replacing them is an environmentally-friendly choice.
For example, installing 500 square feet of hardwood floor will cost $4,000 to $7,000, depending on the type of materials and wood you select. Similarly, installing 1200 square feet will cost $9,600 to $16,800.
However, there are certain cases where refinishing won’t simply work.
- The flooring will have to be replaced if water (flood or pipe bursting) damages the hardwood floor’s structural integrity and the subfloor underneath.
- Previous sanding and refinishing have rendered the floor too thin for another round of refinishing.
- Replacing is a viable option if you want to upgrade your floor for durability or increase the resale value of your property.
Hardwood Refinishing Costs: DIY or Hiring a Contractor, which is better?
A DIY refinishing is a good decision under a few circumstances. When you are refinishing one or two rooms or a small area, DIY is a good option. If the floor is in good condition and doesn’t require sanding or buffing, DIY is a viable choice.
If you plan to go for a full-fledge refinishing job involving sanding, you will need to rent a sanding machine. The average rental for a sanding machine is $50 to $70 per day. You will also need to arrange many other tools like sandpaper, edger, nails, stain, costs, brushes, rollers, safety gear, shop vacuum, and cleaning materials.
You cannot finish a DIY job on your own. If you are refinishing an entire home, you will need at least 2 more people to complete the work in a couple of days.
Even after all this, DIY refinishing is much cheaper than hiring a contractor. However, one important consideration is the risk factor. Sanding and refinishing mistakes can be expensive and lead to replacing the floor.
Summing it up, a DIY job is a better option if you have some experience in refinishing hardwood floors.
How long does it take to refinish 1000 square feet of hardwood floors?
It takes around 2-3 days to refinish a 1000 square feet hardwood floor property. The hardwood floor’s condition and layout affect the time required to finish the job.
How to select the best contractor for the job?
Make sure you clear all your doubts before hiring a contractor. You can ask the contractor about the following and/or other things in your mind.
- Itemized costs
- Duration of the task
- Payment options
- Materials for refinishing
- Damage handling during the job
There are a lot of factors involved in calculating the total refinishing costs. It is nice to estimate the costing process and how these factors impact the end cost. This way, you can control the whole process and avoid overcharging.