Hardwood Flooring Prices

When you plan to add hardwood flooring to your home, what costs should you factor in? Flooring is only part of the cost, and pricing for the project needs to include installation procedures and materials. Installing hardwood is rarely a do-it-yourself project, unless you go with engineered lock and fold flooring.

Hardwood flooring prices vary by grade. Unfinished hardwood flooring is sold in four grades based on National Wood Flooring Association standards, and value products may also be available. Grade is indicative of appearance – not physical quality – and if you want a clean and even look, plan to spend more. Standard hardwood flooring grades include:

  • Clear – composed primarily of heartwood and with the most consistent color.
  • Select – like Clear grade but with minimal character marks.
  • #1 Common – some streaking and knots and more noticeable color variation.
  • #2 Common – greater color variation and a larger presence of streaks and knots.
  • Value – has the most streaking, color variation, and knots, and is not up to a manufacturer's standards.

Unfinished maple flooring and exotic hardwoods use different grading systems. Prefinished hardwoods, which cut out the standing and staining steps of installation, are based on descriptive grades by the manufacturer and vary with brand.

Hardwood flooring prices for wood and installation vary with location, but additional aspects need to be factored into your project. The cost of installation, for instance, includes the method used to add the hardwood, finishing, coating, staining, and floor preparation. Nailing, gluing, or floating a floor is usually $2.50 to $3.50 per square foot, but if plywood needs to be installed on top of concrete first, an additional $1.50 per square wood is likely added. Staining wood is $4.50 per square wood, and any coating is $1.25 per square foot.

Not all areas and floors are the same, and additional steps may be added to installation. A baseboard, common hardwood border, moisture barrier, or sound control may be necessary. Installation, similarly, often involves removing old materials first. The removal and disposal of carpet or any older flooring materials may need to be included.


The company installing your flooring uses more than hardwood to give you a new floor. Prices for hardwood flooring installation include nails or staples or any underlayment for a floating floor.