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How Much Will My Flooring Project Cost?

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You know you need new flooring, but you don't know how much it's going to cost. The good news is that no matter what your budget is, you can find stylish, long-lasting flooring. This guide to flooring costs will get you started.

Choosing Flooring Materials

When budgeting for your flooring, you need to take the cost of the materials and installation costs into consideration. Materials costs* can vary from less than $30 per square metre (m2) to up to $250m2. Starting at the lower end of the scale:

Vinyl is the cheapest type of flooring material. Cork is a relatively inexpensive flooring material. Carpeting can range from very inexpensive to relatively expensive, depending on quality. Engineered products such as bamboo flooring can be priced anywhere from the lower to the higher end of the mid-price scale. Tiling is generally in the low to mid price range. Natural timber prices vary from about mid-range to relatively expensive, depending on the species. Granite and other natural stone tiles are usually more expensive than other flooring materials.

Of course, your flooring will have to be installed. DIY installation is possible, but you'll get better DIY results with materials that are designed for easy installation:

Self-stick vinyl tiles are the easiest to install. Carpet installation costs are relatively inexpensive. DIY installation is not recommended. Some floating floor materials are suitable for DIY installation. If you're relatively skilled and have the time, better quality floating floors can be self-installed, but professional installation is recommended. Solid timber flooring is expensive to lay and must also be sanded and polished. Solid timber should be laid and polished by professionals. Ceramic tiles are less expensive to lay than natural stone, in part because natural stone must be sealed after it is laid. Ceramic and natural stone tiles should be professionally installed.

How Much Will My Flooring Project Cost?

How do those basic guidelines translate into actual flooring costs? You won't know for sure until you get quotes, but to give you a general idea, these are some general costs (supply only):

Sheet vinyl starts at less than $30m2 Vinyl tiles start at less than $40m2 Better quality vinyl or lino can cost up to $100m2 Floating floors start at about $25m2 for timber-look laminated floorboards Timber veneer floating floorboards range from $40 to $100m2. Underlay may cost extra ($5-10m2) Good quality bamboo flooring costs approximately $100m2. Solid timber flooring starts at around $40m2 (will have knots) and goes up to $40-50m2 for mid-range or $60-100m2 for timber with the fewest defects Porcelain tiles start at about $20m2 and go up to $100m2 Natural stone tiles start at around $80m2

Installation costs can vary considerably. $30 to $40m2 is typical for pre-finished flooring. Solid timber flooring will cost much more because it also has to be sanded and polished.

Once you've decided on your flooring material and price range, focus your attention on getting quotes. Your quotes can easily vary by 10 to 20 percent, so if the cheapest quote can offer the same quality, there's no sense paying more. Just be sure you're dealing with a reputable company with a history of good customer service. Your floor has to serve you well for years to come, so you want to be sure it has been professionally installed.

Cost and prices in this article are indicative and should only be used as a guide. They also vary locally and are subject to market forces. This article was updated 14 May 2015 to reflect current market pricing.


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