Adding wood floors to your house can literally cost you thousands of dollars. However, the beauty and class of hardwood floors can certainly be worth the price that is going to cost you. Not only that, but it can drastically increase the price when you sell the house as natural hardwoods are much more marketable than carpets. If you are looking to decrease your investment in wood flooring prices, this article will give you some advice on how you can save money.
Where should I shop?
Generally speaking large discount hardware stores such as Home Depot or Lowes are not going to give you as good of deals as discount dealers such as Lumber Liquidators. For instance, in Atlanta, Georgia one of the best places to get cheap hardwood floors is Builder’s Surplus which is a store that most people do not know about. There are certainly places that you can get wholesale prices on discounted hardwood floors in your area as well, it just may take a little bit of searching.
How much are wood floors going to cost me?
This is a very difficult question to answer. For pure hardwoods such as oak flooring expect to pay about $3.00 per square foot plus the price of installation. However, if you learn how to install hardwoods yourself and if you buy at a discount store you can probably get a deal as low as $1.70 per square foot plus the price of renting the equipment and stain for the floor itself. Wood flooring prices are not nearly as high when you are willing to do some of the work yourself.
Do I need to stain the hardwood floors?
This is very dependent upon which type of hardwood floors that you purchase. If you purchase bamboo or other very thin types of hardwood floors that are going to be nearly impossible to install yourself then expect that you are going to need someone else to stain the floors for you. However, if you are installing your own oak flooring then staining your own floor should not be too difficult. Just remember that once you stain your floors that you should stay off the stained floors for a day or two until the stain has soaked all the way into the wood.
Should I use Polyurethane?
In nearly 100% of cases you should use Polyurethane because you will find your wood flooring lasting quite a bit longer than if you only use stain. In addition, your floors will shine way more if you decide to use Polyurethane because this chemical protects your floors as well as giving your floor that new floor shine.
Can I really install wood flooring myself?
Actually, yes you can as long as you have just a little bit of handyman within you. This will save you a significant amount of money on wood flooring prices. You can go to stores such as Home Depot or Lowes and they offer training on how to install your own floors. Sometimes they will even offer training to install tiling along with the installation instructions on how to install your own flooring. In many cases this training is even free! Anytime that you can do installations yourself you are going to save yourself a significant amount of money and installing hardwood floors is no different. However, remember that you are going to have to buy the nail gun machine as well as the floor flattener yourself. These are generally going to run you $40-$50 per day if you are shopping at the Home Depot which is where I normally shop. If you can get this done within one day then expect to spend $100 or two days then expect to spend $200. That is still quite a bit less than the $2 they are going to expect you to pay per square foot if you get the floors professionally installed. However, you will also have to pay for the stain and the polyurethane. But do not be discouraged because these are generally $10 or so for a rather large can at your local home improvement store. If you consider yourself even somewhat of a handyman, then installing hardwoods by yourself may definitely save you some money.
How long does hardwood flooring last?
In England there are hardwoods still around that have lasted hundreds of years. However, certain woods like teak are way more resistant to disintegration over time so you need to keep in mind that cheap hardwoods might degrade much more than some of the more expensive hardwoods. That being said, you can expect your hardwoods to last much longer than your lifetime if you are purchasing oak, maple, cherry, or bamboo which are the most popular wood flooring at this point in time. Although hardwood flooring prices are a bit more than laminate, they can certainly be worth the price if you can afford it.
Is wood flooring worth the price that it costs?
The answer is a resounding yes as long as you are purchasing a house that is worth more than a couple hundred thousand dollars. If you are only purchasing a house that is worth $100,000 then you need to be absolutely certain that the amount of money you are paying for hardwood floors is actually worth the amount that you are going to spend on the flooring itself. For instance, if you are going to spend $12,000 to get hardwoods throughout your entire house when your house is only worth $90,000 then you better be certain that with hardwood floors that your house would sell for at least $102,000. There are way too many people out there that make the mistake of assuming that any upgrade to their house will give them additional money when they sell the house. That is just not how the housing market works. Every investment that you make, you must be certain that you are going to reap the rewards when you sell the house. In general, hardwood flooring is a good way to spend your money if you own a rather expensive house, but you should do your research if you own a house that is lower middle class.
Why spend my money on wood flooring over granite, cabinets, etc?
Well, hardwood flooring is generally going to cost you less than a full kitchen or bathroom remodel. Wood floors by themselves are usually enough to spice up your home whereas granite counter tops might only make your kitchen or bathroom look better. If you decide to get hardwoods throughout your entire house it is going to make your entire house shine for a similar price than a full kitchen remodel. IF you can go out there and find some good prices on hardwoods or if you decide to install wood flooring yourself then it might only cost you $10,000 for a 3000 square foot house. However, a full kitchen remodel with cherry cabinets might very well cost you $30,000 or more if you are looking for cherry wood flooring with a level 3 granite counter top.
If you are looking to save money on wood flooring prices then make sure you look out for great deals such as discount hardwood dealers or online wholesalers. Just keep your eye out for good deals and you will very likely be able to save yourself a bunch of money. If you can try a do-it-yourself approach then it very might well save you thousands of dollars as well. Overall, wood flooring is a very nice addition to your house but you should definitely weigh your options before spending the thousands of dollars on purchasing hardwood floors.
Flooring is an important part of any house, which is why most people take their time when choosing the kind of material they want for their floors. While there are many different kinds of flooring materials, wood flooring is perhaps the most popular and the favorite of many. It has become a popular feature in many houses primarily for its beauty and for its versatility. Wood flooring prices vary depending on the material. Naturally, the more expensive the wood, the more expensive the price. There are two general categories for wood flooring; solid and engineered.
Solid Wood Flooring
Each plank of solid hardwood flooring is made of solid wood and is milled from a single piece of timber. This kind of flooring comes in a wide array of styles and sizes. Originally, solid hardwood floors were used primarily for structural purposes and to strengthen the support of a building. However, these days wooden support beams are rarely used in construction and solid hardwood flooring is mainly just used for its aesthetic value. The largest dimensions for this kind of flooring is typically 5 wide and 3/4 thick. While solid wood adds a very nice appeal to ones home or any establishment for that matter, it does have its limitations. Expansion and contraction of wood can be hard due to moisture and temperature fluctuations, adding a lot of restrictions when it comes to the use of solid wood for flooring. Solid wood flooring prices can vary on the material as well but generally this kind of wood costs more than other kinds. The prices for pre-finished solid hardwood can range anywhere from $7 to $15 per 3/4 x 21/4 planks.
Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered hardwood flooring is typically made from two or more layers of wood that form one plank. The top layer is the visible part once the flooring is installed. The top layer is attached to the core, which provides stability, by using a strong and durable kind of adhesive. Some people often confuse engineered wood flooring with laminate wood flooring,vinyl and veneer wood flooring due to the similarity in the installation process. Laminate flooring uses an image of wood on the surface whereas vinyl uses plastic that is designed to look like wood and veneer uses a thin layer of wood for its core.
Engineered wood flooring is perhaps the most common type of wood flooring that is used in most households and establishments. Engineered hardwood flooring prices are generally cheaper than solid wood flooring prices. One plank of engineered hardwood with dimensions of 5/16 x 4 costs around $4.99 to $7.99, depending on the kind of wood used.
It can be rather difficult to compare engineered wood flooring and solid wood flooring because the former comes in a wide range of floor qualities. However, since solid wood flooring poses many limitations, many people turn to engineered wood instead. Also, since engineered wood flooring prices are generally cheaper than solid wood, more people prefer it. Though, it is important to note that there are some types of engineered wood that are much more expensive than solid wood flooring.
Limitations of Solid Wood Flooring
Solid wood flooring cannot be installed directly on top of concrete nor can it be installed below basements. Solid wood flooring is also limited when it comes to plank dimensions. Since solid wood is thicker, it is typically installed using nails. The installation of solid wood flooring is generally more expensive than engineered flooring because it requires more skill, time and effort.
Benefits of Using Engineered Wood Flooring
Engineered wood flooring prices varies significantly on the kind of wood used for the flooring but it has several benefits over solid wood. Engineered wood flooring are much faster to install and very easy to replace. Since installation does not require the fastening of planks on top of each other, it is easier to repair than solid wood flooring. Engineered wood is much longer and wider than solid planks, limiting the amount of material used. While the top layer of engineered and solid wood flooring have the same hardness and durability, people still prefer engineered wood over solid wood because of its benefits.
Types of Wood Flooring Finishes
There are two common types of floor finishes used for wood. The type of finish used can greatly affect wood flooring prices. The two most popular types are oil and polyurethane.
Oil Wood Flooring Finish
Oil finish is the most common type of floor finish used all over the world. Oil finished flooring is made from naturally derived drying oils. Pre-finished oil floors can be UV cured for durability. Oil finished floors that use vegetable oil is typically all-natural and does not contain any VOCs. Oil finished wood flooring prices vary depending on the type of wood and the type of oil used.
Oil finished floors can be brushed and oiled at the same time. These types of floor are typically brushed with the use of steel brushes. This method can remove the splinters on the wood, making it more desirable. After the wood has been brushed, it is oiled.
Polyurethane Wood Flooring Finish
This type of floor finish was first introduced in 1940. While there are several types, the two most common types are oil-modified polyurethane and straight polyurethane. These two types are marketed under different names that include but is not limited to; varnish, urethane and lacquer. Wood flooring prices for floors with polyurethane finish depends highly on the type and the manufacturer.
After the wood flooring is installed, it goes through a process called sanding. Sanding is done to smoothen an installed floor and to make sure that all surfaces are evenly textured. Wood flooring prices are not affected by sanding, as it is a different cost altogether. Sanding can also be done to renew the appearance of old wooden floors. Most homeowners have their wooden floors undergo sanding every few years or so to preserve its natural beauty.
Wood flooring prices are subject to change, depending on the availability of certain types of wood. If you want to save on your wood flooring, it wold be best to watch out for a sale or two, as you can save up to 50% off if you are lucky.