Laminate flooring is a popular choice for homeowners who want the look of natural wood without the high costs or maintenance. Laminate flooring installation costs between $1,440 and $4,310, with an average of $2,790.
Laminate has a fiberboard core with an image top layer that mimics the look of wood. The result is a scratch-resistant flooring material that costs $3 to $9 per square foot to install.
In this guide:
- Average Costs
- Cost Estimator by Size
- Other Factors That Affect Cost
- Related Services
- Pro Cost vs. DIY Cost
- Cost by Location
Average Laminate Flooring Costs in 2024
|National Average Cost||$2,790|
|Typical Price Range||$1,440 – $4,310|
|Extreme Low-End Cost||$485|
|Extreme High-End Cost||$8,000|
The cost to install laminate flooring ranges between $1,440 and $4,310, including material and labor costs. Despite that, the prices could go as low as $485 and up to $8,000, depending on a few factors.
To keep costs down, you can:
- Install the laminate yourself
- Keep the area small
- Shop around to compare prices
- Choose a low-cost type of laminate
Laminate Flooring Cost Estimator by Area Size
The square footage of your laminate flooring project can significantly impact the overall cost. Larger areas will need more materials and will take longer to install, increasing costs. In contrast, the job can be done quickly in small areas using fewer materials.
Laminate flooring costs $3 to $9 per square foot to install, with materials and labor included. You can expect to pay only $0.80 to $2.50 per square foot for the materials. Use the table below to get a rough estimate of your project.
|Project Size||Average (Materials Only)||Average (Material & Labor)|
|100 sq. ft.||$80 – $250||$300 – $900|
|200 sq. ft.||$160 – $500||$600 – $1,800|
|300 sq. ft.||$240 – $750||$900 – $2,700|
|400 sq. ft.||$320 – $1,000||$1,200 – $3,600|
|500 sq. ft.||$400 – $1,250||$1,500 – $4,500|
|600 sq. ft.||$480 – $1,500||$1,800 – $5,400|
Other Factors That Affect Cost
Laminate flooring is a popular choice for many homeowners because it is generally more budget-friendly than other types of flooring. However, it’s important to note that the overall cost of laminate flooring can vary significantly depending on a few factors:
- Laminate Style
- Abrasion Rating
- Removing Old Flooring
- Subfloor and Underlayment Repairs
While laminate flooring that looks like wood is the most common style, the image top layer can be printed to resemble other types of material, such as tile or stone, and prices will vary accordingly.
|Laminate Style||Average Cost (Per Square Foot)|
|Wood Look||$1 – $4|
|Stone Look||$2 – $3|
|Tile Look||$3 – $7|
Wood Look Laminate
Laminate flooring that looks like wood is the most common style and therefore tends to be more readily available than other types of laminate. These laminate floors are usually installed using a “click and lock” system, making them DIY-friendly.
They are fabricated to resemble various types of wood and can be found in various patterns and colors. They cost, on average, $1 to $4 per square foot (materials only), but prices may vary depending on the type of wood. The table below shows the average cost for different wood-look laminates:
|Wood Type||Average Cost (Per Square Foot)|
Stone Look Laminate
Stone-look laminates have a printed image layer that resembles natural stone materials, such as slate, marble, or travertine. However, they are not as common as wood laminates, so they may be more difficult to find.
Like other types of laminate flooring, stone-look laminate is typically installed in click-lock, so they’re an excellent option for those who want the look of stone without the difficulty of installation. They cost between $2 and $3 per square foot (materials only).
Tile Look Laminate
Tile-look laminate flooring mimics the appearance of ceramic or porcelain tiles. However, it’s important to note that they’re not the same as actual tiles and can be damaged if exposed to water.
Tile-look laminates are an excellent alternative to real tile for people on a budget. They cost $3 to $7 per square foot (materials only) and can be easily installed DIY.
The thickness of a laminate plank can also impact its costs. Laminate flooring ranges from 6 mm to 12 mm, but most planks available are between 8-10 mm.
Thicker laminate tends to have better sound absorption. It is often easier to install but may come with a higher price tag. However, thinner planks require a perfectly even subfloor for proper installation, so you might pay more overall.
Laminate flooring comes in several different textures that can add a unique and natural look to your home, and the prices for each can vary slightly:
|Type of Texture||Average Costs (Per Square Foot)|
|Smooth||$1.70 – $2.60|
|Embossed||$1.25 – $3.15|
|Embossed in register||$1.95 – $3.25|
|Hand Scraped||$2.60 – $5.50|
- Smooth: Laminates with a smooth texture have a sleek and modern look without any visible texture or grain. They’re easier to clean but can be more slippery. They cost between $1.70 and $2.60 per square foot.
- Embossed: Laminates with an embossed texture have a more subtle, wood grain-like texture. They cost between $1.25 and $3.15 per square foot.
- Embossed in register: This laminate has a raised texture aligned with a wood image printed in the top layer. It gives a more realistic look to the flooring, costing from $1.95 to $3.25 per square foot.
- Hand scraped: This texture gives the laminate a rustic, distressed look. It is designed to replica the look of hand-scraped hardwood flooring. They cost between $2.60 and $5.50 per square foot.
Besides the textures, laminate flooring can also come in different finishes, and each one has its characteristics and prices associated with it:
|Type of Finish||Average Cost (Per Square Foot)|
|Matte||$0.85 – $3.85|
|Semi-matte||$0.85 – $3.30|
|Gloss||$1.70 – $4.60|
- Matte: A matte finish gives your flooring a subtle and understated look. However, as it absorbs light, it shows dirt and footprints more easily. These laminates cost between $0.85 and $3.85 per square foot.
- Semi-matte: This finish is the most popular one, as it has an elegant sheen that doesn’t look over the top. Semi-matte laminates cost between $0.85 and $3.30 per square foot.
- Gloss: Gloss laminates have a very reflective high shine. It can help create a sophisticated look in your home while hiding imperfections. Gloss finish laminates cost between $1.70 and $4.60 per square foot.
Laminate flooring costs can also vary slightly depending on the specific features you are looking for. For example, suppose you want to install radiant heating. In that case, it is vital that the laminate flooring is approved for this, or it can get damaged.
On the other hand, if you have kids or pets, it is a good idea to choose a laminate that is scratch resistant. This will help your floor to stay in good condition for years. The table below displays the average costs for each type of laminate:
|Type of Feature||Average Cost (Per Square Foot)|
|Scratch-Resistance||$0.85 – $3.80|
|Radiant Heating Approved||$0.85 – $3.90|
|Installable over Cork||$0.85 – $3.90|
|Low-Maintenance||$1.00 – $4.65|
|Noise-Resistance||$1.40 – $4.00|
|Water-Resistance||$1.70 – $4.30|
|Underlayment Attached||$1.90 – $4.35|
The AC rating, or abrasion rating, measures a laminate flooring’s resistance to wear and tear. The scale ranges from AC1 to AC5, with AC1 being the lowest resistance level and AC5 being the highest.
Ratings from 1 to 4 are appropriate for residential use. Still, if you’re considering installing laminate in high-traffic areas, choosing a higher AC level is more advisable. Laminate flooring with a higher AC usually costs more, but they are also more durable.
While it’s possible to install laminate flooring yourself, it can be a time-consuming and challenging task, especially if you need to repair or replace the subfloors.
A flooring contractor can save you time and ensure a high-quality installation for $2 to $7 per square foot, depending on the complexity of installation, the type of laminate, and the area in which you live.
Removing Old Flooring
Although you can install laminate flooring over various flooring materials, many homeowners prefer removing their old flooring beforehand. This is because leaving the old flooring in place can raise the height of the floor, which can be a problem if the new laminate is installed in a room with doors that swing open.
Removing the existing flooring from a 200-square-foot space costs around $450, or $70 per hour.
Subfloor and Underlayment Repairs
One of the main challenges of installing laminate is ensuring that the subfloor is smooth and level. If there are imperfections in the subfloor, getting the laminate to lay flat and look good can be difficult.
Replacing the subfloors costs between $2 and $7 per square foot, and it’s best to leave it for a professional.
After replacing the subfloors, you’ll still need to worry about the underlayment — a thin layer of material placed between the subfloor and the laminate. Underlayment gives a smooth, stable surface for the laminate to be installed on and additional sound protection.
New underlayment usually costs between $2 and $5 per square foot, but some laminate planks have attached underlayment.
It is essential to leave a gap between the flooring and the walls to allow for proper expansion and contraction of your laminate flooring. This gap can be covered by installing baseboards, which will protect the edges of your flooring and give it a finished look.
Baseboard installation costs between $5.70 and $9 per linear foot, including labor and materials.
There are a few options if you’re considering what new flooring material to choose from. Each type of flooring has its own pros and cons, so weigh your options carefully before making a decision.
If you don’t want to give natural wood flooring up for a more budget-friendly option, investing in real hardwood flooring won’t disappoint you. Hardwood is a classic and elegant flooring option that adds the most value to your home. However, it is also prone to water damage, so it might not be appropriate for kitchen flooring.
There are several wood types to choose from, and installation costs range from $2,245 to $6,110, with most homeowners paying around $4,140.
Vinyl, like laminate, can be fabricated to look like real wood but at a lower cost. Vinyl flooring comes in a variety of styles, including tiles, planks, and sheets, and the installation ranges between $865 and $3,330, with an average of $2,120.
Vinyl flooring is water-resistant, scratch-resistant, and low maintenance. However, it doesn’t add as much value to your home and is not eco-friendly.
Linoleum is a natural flooring material made of linseed oil, cork dust, and wood flour. Unlike vinyl, linoleum is eco-friendly and doesn’t emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs). It is available in various colors and patterns and can be installed in tiles or sheets, costing between $1,340 and $3,125.
Linoleum flooring is durable and easy to clean, but it may be prone to dents and scratches and can be damaged by standing water.
Pro Cost vs. DIY Cost
One of the main benefits of laminate is that it is relatively easy to install in click-lock, even for those who are handy but may have limited experience with flooring installation.
Laminate can be installed over most existing flooring if it’s in good condition and leveled. Here’s what you’re going to need:
|DIY Equipment||Average Cost|
|Total Cost:||$126 – $196|
Buying all the equipment needed for laminate installation will set you back from $126 to $196. This cost might be lower if you already have some of these materials at home, and you’ll save money on labor costs.
Cost of Laminate Flooring by Location
The costs for laminate flooring installation can vary a lot depending on where you’re located, and there are several reasons for this:
- Labor costs are higher in urban areas due to the higher demand, which drives up the cost.
- Living costs are higher in big cities, which also increases costs.
- There may be fewer options available in your area, and you may have to pay more because of it.
- If materials have to be shipped from a distance, you might have to pay an additional fee.
Carpet installation is generally cheaper, at an average of $1,525, while laminate installation stands at $2,790. However, laminate flooring is more durable and easier to maintain than carpet, which makes it a better value in the long run, even if it’s initially more expensive.
In general, laminate flooring can last for 15 to 25 years, but this can vary depending on the quality of the laminate and the AC rating. Also, note that laminate can look worn over time when subjected to heavy foot traffic.
Laminate is not usually water resistant, so it may not be suitable for areas prone to moisture or spills. It also can’t be refinished like wood, so once it becomes scratched or damaged, it may need to be replaced. Additionally, laminate flooring can be noisy when walked on, which may be a concern for homeowners who value a quiet environment.
Laminate flooring can cost anywhere from $1,440 to $4,310, depending on the size and characteristics of the material. If you want to save time and effort, consider hiring a professional flooring installer to handle the job.
With the right professional, you can trust that your laminate flooring will be installed quickly and efficiently, giving you the beautiful floor you want without any added stress.
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