3 Things to Consider when Estimating Hardwood Floor Installation Cost

How many times have you gotten estimates for a project around your house and thought you could just as easily do the job yourself to save money? I know that we do it all the time and if there’s one thing I’ve learned the hard way, it’s that there is more to a project that just the price! This is true when it comes to most flooring projects and especially hardwood floors, when you’re figuring out exactly what you get for your money as it relates to hardwood floor installation costs.

In this DIY Guide we’re going to share a bit of our hard-earned insight about installing hardwood floors into your home and what you actually get when you pay the cost for the labor of a professional. in our case, we decided to tear up the carpet in a spare room and our flooring quote was $1755, and they would have it done in 6 hours. I wish we had gone that route… such is life right!

1 – It’s Not Always As Easy as it Looks

After watching the 5 minute video from Lowes Home Improvement below… you might get the same impression we got. I can do this with no problem at all, after all, I’m a pretty good DIY’er right?! in our case, what we thought was a quick 1 day project for a small room, turned into twice as much money than we expected, and too many headaches for me to count on one hand! Watch the video then read on after…

Looks super simple right? Now let me share a real world experience with you so you can learn how our simple hardwood floor installation project went.

2 – The Cost of Time, Materials and Tools for a DIY Install

  • Room Size: 14×16 (224 sf)
  • Old Floor: Carpet over plywood
  • New Flooring: $595, Engineered Flooring (Mayflower Darkwood) at $2.89/sf
  • Misc Trim and Moldings: $90
  • Tools and Supplies: $380
  • Other Misc Costs: $140 (paper backer, dump disposal fee, etc)
  • $1,205 – Total Out of Pocket Cost

3 – The Cost Value of Your Time

While many will say that I would be crazy not to save $550 on the hardwood floor installation cost by doing it myself, why am I kicking myself in the ass so hard? The reality is that the project was much more than I was ready to take on as a DIY’er and since I value my time pretty highly, It just wasn’t worth the savings to do the following tasks.

  • 2-Full days of my time (and a helper for one full day) to complete the work.
  • Loading the boxes into my truck and carrying them into the house.
  • The wear and tear on my 45 year old knees and back!
  • Removal of the old carpeting, cutting it up, prepping the floor etc.
  • Trip to the dump to get rid of the old carpet.
  • So much more…

It Makes More Sense for Me to Hire a Flooring Installer Next Time

We have about 4 more rooms we want to get rid of the carpet and install hardwood floors into. For us, using a professional is the choice going forward… my time is worth more than the $550 we saved. How much did your hardwood floor installation cost you? Share the area size and the approximate cost below.

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