hardwood floor costsSo you have decided that you want to install a new hardwood floor. Your old carpets are beginning to look pretty grungy, matted and generally just not nice. Being the smart consumer you are, you have requested several quotes from several stores which also include installation. You have no idea what Hardwood Floor Costs are until you begin looking at various quotations.

You have just received your first estimate and are suffering from sticker shock from the cost estimate to place a hardwood floor in your home. Now what to do, should you go back to carpet or take the plunge and go for hardwood flooring? Most people do not realize is that there are parts of a hardwood floor that are more expensive than others. It is important to identify these areas and make a decision regarding what you want to do in these specific areas,  especially if you’re cost conscious.

Stairs are Expensive

For example one of the most expensive portions of a hardwood floor are the stairs. Most people will want to continue their hardwood floor up the stairs and into the upstairs hallway and bedrooms. Even a straight stair is more expensive per square foot, while a stairway that is curved will drive up the cost considerably.Many people avoid placing hardwood on the stairs due to cost, but also due to a concern about the floor being more slippery. They are afraid they may slip and fall down the stairs. From many years of walking up and down stairs with hard wood on them , we can say that you adapt and are just as sure footed on these stairs as we would be on carpeted stairs.

So if you are at all counting your pennies, consider leaving the stairs covered in carpet that blends well with the hardwood floor that you have placed in other areas of your home. You could  also place a carpet runner on the hardwood stairs, however we think this kind of defeats the purpose.

Hardwood Floor Costs

Another significant cost area is the labor that is required to install your hardwood floor.  Typically, installers will charge equivalent dollars for installation to the cost of the material. Floors that are rectangular, with lots of straight stretches are easy to install. Floors with lots of doorways, curves or fancy patterns just take longer to install due to the cutting and fitting that is required. Installers may increase their charges somewhat to accommodate this extra work. Take this aspect into account when you are making decisions about the design of your hardwood floor.

You may also want to consider installing the floor yourself. Take a course at a local renovation store, such as Home Depot, and do the installation yourself. Not only will you save lots of money, you will be able to afford to do some of the other renovation projects that you planned to do.

Pre-Finished Hardwood Flooring

The final aspect we want to mention is whether to install pre-finished hardwood flooring or to install hardwood floor that must be finished after installation. This is very much a pricing issue and consumers should obtain several quotes before they make a decision. However there is one other critical issue. A pre-finished hardwood floor can be installed rapidly and be finished in several days or less, while a natural hardwood floor is going to take several weeks due to installation, sanding and finishing activities.For my money and time, pre-finished hardwood floors are the only way to proceed.

Although sanding generates lots of dust, so does the installation of any hardwood floor. The process of nailing seems to dislodge dust on the floor and even  if you vacuum ahead of time there is still lots of dust you cannot get to. If you do decide to sand a floor, always use a dustless sander which has a vacuum attached and expels the dust outside the home into a bag that contains all of the dust generated by the sander.

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