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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Flooring, Painting & Remodeling > Refinishing a Hardwood Floor

Refinishing a Hardwood Floor Cost


How Much Does Refinishing a Hardwood Floor Cost?

 
low costRecoating: $200-$250 per roomaverage costRefinishing: $340-$900+ per room
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Hardwood floors add stylish elegance or folksy charm to a home, depending on the type of wood, layout and condition. Refinishing to remove ground-in dirt while sanding out dents and dings can revive this highly visible portion of your interior decor.

Typical costs:

  • It's about$200-$250 (averaging $1/square foot) to recoat a slightly worn 225-square-foot (15x15 feet) room, a process also known as screening. Typically this takes about a day or two, and restores a floor that's in relatively good condition.
  • Expect to pay $340-$900 (about $1.50-$4 a square foot) to completely refinish a 15x15 foot room. That generally includes sanding down to the bare wood and applying at least 2 and sometimes 3 coats of finish. Simple projects average 2-4 days, but the process can take anywhere from 3 days to several weeks, depending on the type of finish, stain and weather conditions.
  • The price range can jump to $850-$1,125 (around $3.75-$5/square foot) or more for a refinishing specialist to do a customized job on a 225-square-foot vintage wood floor, using multiple coats of chemicals, stains and other finishes to create just the right look. Generally this more labor-intensive approach requires at least 8-11 days, or more.
  • Do-it-yourselfers intent on completely refinishing a 225-square-foot floor can rent a commercial sander, also called a drum sander, and buy other needed materials for about $125-$225. Renting a floor buffer and buying needed supplies recoating runs $50-$100. These costs go up the longer it takes to finish the project.
Related articles: Hardwood Floors, Baseboards, Crown Molding, Engineered Wood Flooring, Laminate Flooring, Floor Cleaning

What should be included:
  • Use a drop of water to decide if the floor needs recoating/screening or a complete refinishing. If the water beads up or soaks in slowly, recoating may be all that's needed. However, if the water soaks in immediately, it means the wood fibers are probably exposed and the floor should be refinished.
  • Refinishing a hardwood floor is dusty, dirty, noisy and stinky (lots of strong chemicals). Many people opt to have their floors refinished while they're on vacation.
  • This is a do-it-yourself project only for those with lots of time and patience. ThisOldHouse.com[1] describes the process both for screening floors and for doing a complete refinishing job, and gives tips for spot repairs such as small stains or burns.
Additional costs:
  • Refinishing stairs can add about $25-$45 per step to the total cost.
  • Severely damaged floors may need boards replaced, cracks sealed, stains bleached or other repairs before being refinished; the cost will depend on how extensive the problems areas are.
  • Removing old carpet can be messy and time-consuming, and may not be included in an estimate unless specifically requested. Many commercial refinishers don't remove the furniture from the room, so customers might have to do it themselves or pay others to do it.
Shopping for refinishing a hardwood floor:
  • RentalHQ.com[2] lists local rental centers, and Lowe's[3] carries a range of do-it-yourself refinishing supplies.
  • Get estimates from several contractors. For referrals visit the National Wood Flooring Association[4] .
  • Many refinishers require a deposit, but don't pay the full amount until the project is completely finished. Request and check references, verify that the company is licensed and bonded, and check for any complaints with the Better Business Bureau[5] .
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments

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Refinishing old Floors
Amount: $3,711.16 total
Posted by: Joe Palmer in Kinnelon, NJ.Posted: May 31st, 2014 09:05AM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 787.5Number of Rooms: 2
Recoat or Refinish: Refinishing, Screen & RecoatContractor: Passport Wood Floors,inc
787.5 Sanding Sealer And Three Coats Water Base Finishing ( Natural Color)
1.5 stair Box Sanding Sealer And Three Coats Water Base Finishing ( Natural Color)
Screen & Recoat Hall Up Stair I am very happy with the work done on my house
recommend to all my neighbors, Passport wood Floors 9084890793
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Hardwood Refinishing
Amount: $3,000.00 total
Posted by: Kaigan in Wilmington, DE.Posted: February 11th, 2013 12:02PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1500Number of Rooms: 5
Recoat or Refinish: RefinishContractor: Delaware Valley Hardwoods
We used Delaware Valley Hardwoods for our project of 1500ft of 90year old wide plank oak that had excessive wear. At the time of the estimate, we were unsure how it would refinish but Jim assured us it would be amazing. after two days of sanding with the large machnes, Jim laid stain samples for us to choose from. We chose a Dark color (Dark Walnut) and it came out beautiful! you would never know how awful the floors were before refinishing!
We HIGHLY recommend Delaware Valley Hardwoods for any wood project! 302.396.4560 call them for the best job out there!
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Are you people crazy
Amount: $0.00 total
Posted by: Bill C. in Clinton, MA.Posted: November 20th, 2012 07:11PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: NoneNumber of Rooms: 0
Recoat or Refinish: Re-EVERYTHINGContractor: Colonial hardwood Floors
Are u people crazy???? The prices that some of you paid are crazy!????? 8 dollars a foot??!!!!! Are you insane!!!! We do the best job in Mass. And get less than 2 bucks a foot!!!!
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Refinishing and Installing... HARD WOOD FLOORING
Amount: $3,500.00 total
Posted by: Bill Property Management in Worcester, MA.Posted: October 13th, 2012 04:10PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 900Number of Rooms: 8
Recoat or Refinish: 3Contractor: N.P. HARDWOOD FLOORS
We just had 900 s.f. of rough looking Hardwood Flooring Refinished here in Worcester Ma, the contractor was perfect, the hardwood floors were completed on time and very, very beautiful. Most respectful company I have ever met. Dust free equipment and low fume product (Bona Traffic) made a very comfortable situation for other tenants in the building.True Professionals, recommended to anyone that enjoys Hardwood Flooring done right.
Bill The Property Manager 774-279-605 (one)
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refinished red oak
Amount: $8,500.00 total
Posted by: phillip and morgan in Gurnee, IL.Posted: August 11th, 2012 05:08AM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1100Number of Rooms: 2
Recoat or Refinish: refinishContractor: FloorWorx
We live in what most might call a McMansion. It was built in 1999 and the hardwood downstairs, I swear, was coated with sugar water. After our two award winning Pugs had their way, it looked like bare wood. Peter from FloorWorx in Lake Bluff came out and sanded, buffed, and laid down 4 coats of poly. We stayed at a hotel during the 8 day process for which my wife insisted (cost of hotel 3000 not included in total) . process was harrowing but floors look nice. Just in time for our country club get-to-know. We are impressed with our glassy floor and brag that we got the whole thing done for under 15,000 (pocket change for us).
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hardwood floor refinishing
Amount: $3,600.00 total
Posted by: Eugene Flanagan in Locust Grove, VA.Posted: November 24th, 2011 09:11AM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1,200 sqftNumber of Rooms: 4
Recoat or Refinish: sand & finishContractor: Dominion Floors
Dominion Floors moved our furniture out of the rooms ,pulled up all the carpet and disposed of it. Sanded , Stained it Honey Oak and coated the floors with (3) three applications of Waterbase polyurethane. They also supplied and installed New Shoe-moulding on the baseboards before the final coat. All for $3.00 a square foot.Great price and quality , Dominion was professional all the way through the proccess ,keeping us up to date on the jobs status. Great experience all around and they have a store in Arlington ,Va. also , so my Mom can get her New carpet from them too!
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debating on rather to bite the bullet or just buy the carpet....
Amount: $0.00 total
Posted by: dee doodle in haviland, OH.Posted: October 14th, 2011 11:10AM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1500Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: refinish / recoatContractor: john smith
trying to make a decision, this is a project for next spring/summer....rather we can do it ourselves or need a contractor.....needing feedback....live 30 miles east of Ft Wayne, indiana.....
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Hardwood Floors
Amount: $2,000.00 total
Posted by: Roseanna Martinez in DENVER, CO.Posted: September 26th, 2011 03:09PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 500Number of Rooms: living room and kitchen
Recoat or Refinish: refinishContractor: Retana's Flooring Services
I LOVED the way my floors came out. The installers at Retana's Flooring Services were very polite and on TIME! They got my floors done in 3 days. Left my house looking like a MILLION dollars. I would recomend Jose and his crew.
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wood floor sanding
Amount: $1,500.00 total
Posted by: lestat in lancaster, PA.Posted: August 2nd, 2011 12:08PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 550Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: refiinishContractor: wood floor restoration & installation
excellent job very old and in bad shape houuse dated back to 1700
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buff and recoat
Amount: $765.00 total
Posted by: May be cheaper than you think in Rapid City, SD.Posted: June 6th, 2011 09:06PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 550Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: recoatContractor: Nathan Varilek
I bought a rental house and pulled up the carpet to find old oak floors, not wanting to buy new carpet I called a local wood floor contractor. I was expecting to spend well over a thousand but but he was done in a day and the floor cleaned up very well and looks new again! Thanks Woodfloors & More.
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Wood floor refinishing
Amount: $2,500.00 total
Posted by: Bryan Wilson in Lisle, IL.Posted: May 19th, 2011 04:05PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 710Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: RefinishingContractor: Flooring Contractor Inc
I needed a contractor to sand and finish my old floor,apply a medium brown color and a few coats of finish.I found this company on your website that did some work in Naperville,about 15 minutes from my home and I decided to give them a call.Daniel explain me the work he will do and the type of finishes I can get, very informative.He e-mailed me a detailed written estimate about the work to be done.One of my wife coworkers recommended him also.No dust, very clean, a profesional person to work with.
Give him a call at (630)428-1633
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Screen, Sand, Stain, Linseed & Buff
Amount: $90.00 total
Posted by: AntiqueBuilderBoy in San Diego, CA.Posted: April 22nd, 2011 02:04PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 120Number of Rooms: 1
Recoat or Refinish: RefinishContractor:
Rented orbital and screen sanded 60, 80 & 100 grit. Quick 150 palm sander to smooth floor. Satained floor with compatible Min stain color to original hue. 3 coats of linseed oil with 3 hours soak before final buffing. Floor now has great hue with oak grain highlights. Looks like an old well taken are of floor. Not a new glitzy gloss. Love it.
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install new and stain finish
Amount: $24,000.00 total
Posted by: Jay Dubs in Oak Creek, WI.Posted: April 16th, 2011 07:04PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 500Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: Contractor: Bills Hardwood Flooring
His guys did a all right install. the sand and finish was a bit less than a professional look. i have repeatedly ask bill to stop in and take a look of the finish. he just got the money and was done
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Floor Sanded and Refinished
Amount: $5,800.00 total
Posted by: mikeeman in Calgary, Other.Posted: March 31st, 2011 07:03PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1200Number of Rooms: 3 plus hall
Recoat or Refinish: 3Contractor: Termite Wood Worx
My floors were destroyed by some bad renters. They nailed carpet to my floor and badly wore out the maple hardwood. I met this awsome contractor referred to me by a friend of mine and he came through. Best money I ever spent on a contractor.
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refinished fir and oak floors
Amount: $4,900.00 total
Posted by: Seattle_Jen in Seattle, WA.Posted: March 29th, 2011 07:03PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 575 fir; 400 oakNumber of Rooms: 6 plus hall
Recoat or Refinish: refinish, 3 coatsContractor: Dallas Watson
Sand and 3 coats of swedish finish on oak living/dining rooms; sand, stain and 3 coats of swedish finish on fir in kitchen, bedrooms, office and hallway.
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floor resanded and finished
Amount: $2,250.00 total
Posted by: jenna in st.cloud, MN.Posted: March 23rd, 2011 05:03PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1100Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: refinishContractor: D&JFlooring
I have an older home, I tried to save money and do them myself, it was not a good idea, i left marks everywhere and the floor was very uneven. I called around and got prices which varied widely. A friend refered me to D&J flooring, when he arrived I had my doubts, he didnt drive a brand new vehicle and was a little younger. After we talked and went through everything he explained what should be done, he then told me it would take about 4 days, I wasnt prepared to move out for that time, when I did them myself it took me about a day(and look what happened) He then told me we will do what it takes, if you want to go and take your family overnight on weekend we will come friday night to start and you can have your house back by Sunday evening, we will just have to burn the midnight oil. When we left on friday they were replaceing boards that were ruined by me in the middle of floor, when we got back our house looked so amazeing it was unreal. I would refer them to everyone, very old school ended job with a handshake and he stops by out of blue about twice a year to make sure everything is still looking great. Their number is 320-360-1246 and service the state of mn
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refinished floors
Amount: $1,500.00 total
Posted by: pete ianuzelli in philadelphia area, PA.Posted: January 7th, 2011 09:01AM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 600Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: refinishedContractor: Ralph Lebresco Jr
I had old wide plank oak floors that desperately needed help. So i called a few places before i met Ralph. He answered all the questions i needed answers to and then some. He also gave me the best price and a precise time needed. The floors look as.if they were just put in yesterday. Highly recomended 267 271 1590
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Refilnished Foyer & Bathroom Cabinets
Amount: $640.00 total
Posted by: Darlene Perez in Winston Salem, NC.Posted: November 13th, 2010 02:11PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 400Number of Rooms:
Recoat or Refinish: Sandless RefinishContractor: All-Things-Wood
Incredible job, brilliant and durable finish! In the past we had suffered with a full sanding done by a big local company, dust went every where and the smell was horrible…we couldn’t sleep in the house. But All-Things-Wood refinished the floor without the dust and little odor. The cost was only $1.50 a foot. We were so impressed we invited them back to refinish our bathroom cabinets. Amazing, they did away with the water stain, changed the color from Oak to Cherry, and for half the cost quoted by other companies.
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refinished hardwoods
Amount: $699.00 total
Posted by: ED MELLO in Providence, RI.Posted: November 10th, 2010 04:11PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 700 sq ftNumber of Rooms: 2
Recoat or Refinish: refinishContractor: Mr Sandless
Mr Sandless came to my house and in 8 hours they refinished my floor, got rid of my stains and put 3 coats of gloss poly on my floors. There was no sanding and my house didn't smell like polyurethane all week either. Best of all the finish was great.
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refinised floors and painted
Amount: $1,500.00 total
Posted by: Larry Johnson in chicago, IL.Posted: October 27th, 2010 01:10PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1100Number of Rooms: 3
Recoat or Refinish: refinished\ recoatedContractor: matt annointedservice@comcast.net
I needed carpet pulled up in 3 rooms plus stairs. Matt from annointedservices.net stained and seals floors to a great finish. Also gave me a stairway finish to die for, would refer them to anyone in the chicago area (708)271-3686
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Refinished my floors in Virginia
Amount: $5,800.00 total
Posted by: Susan 39 in Centreville, VA.Posted: September 28th, 2010 03:09PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1100Number of Rooms: 1st floor
Recoat or Refinish: RefinishContractor: Era Construction llc
We recently moved into our home and where not to happy with the conditions the floors where in so we called Era Construction for a quote on refinishing the floors. About two weeks later they got started. The guys at Era Construction did an amazing job finishing the floors, they took there time on making sure it was just right. My floors look like new and i'm glad I chose them.
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Refinishing My Floors in Sacramento
Amount: $3,700.00 total
Posted by: a user in Sacramento, CA.Posted: August 31st, 2010 10:08PM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1000Number of Rooms: 3 rooms and hall
Recoat or Refinish: Full RefinishContractor: Sacramento's Finest Floors
My floors were the original floor of the home. They had water damage and burn marks. After talking to a number of floor refinishers I decided to go with a young man with Sacramento's Finest Floors he gave me many referrals and I even went and seen one of his previous customers homes. They looked very nice and couldn't wait to have mine refinished. 1 1/2 weeks later my floors were completed and they looked amazing. I would recommend them to anyone very professional and easy to work with.
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His moto was "how can i serve you"
Amount: $8,500.00 total
Posted by: Ruthy in Gramercy park ny, NY.Posted: August 17th, 2010 06:08AM
Sq Ft of Hardwood: 1200 with 2 stepsNumber of Rooms: 5
Recoat or Refinish: RefinishContractor: New American Homes Inc.
I'm a doctor and i live in a historical district, my floors are about 78 yrs old. My boys kept telling me mom we can do it ourselves, but when i found out those were the original flooring i said no way lets get professionals. I was shopping around contractors after 3 of them gave me estimates and the estimate were completely different so i decided to get a few more estimates. I posted an ad on craigs list and Ganesh contacted me and he came to see the job. When i saw him from the window i was thinking i'm not hiring him he's too young. when he greeted me his exact words "it's an honor to me you, now how can i serve you and your family"i smiled, i show him the job and he told me everything the other contractors told me....he said if i do this this and this then the price is this but if i do this the price is this many options. His price was fair and the job was first class (don't judge a book by its cover).....i highly recommend him. 347-449-8745
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External Resources:
  1.  www.thisoldhouse.com/toh/article/0,,203303,00.html
  2.  www.rentalhq.com
  3.  www.lowes.com/cd_Refinish+a+Hardwood+Floor_280130849_
  4.  woodfloors.org/find-a-professional-2.aspx
  5.  search.bbb.org/
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