Introduction: The Value of Real Wood Flooring

If you’re considering revamping your home with a timeless, elegant flooring option, real wood flooring should be at the top of your list. As a homeowner in San Diego who values high-quality craftsmanship and reliable installation services, you understand the importance of investing in a flooring solution that not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of your home but also offers long-lasting durability. But what about the cost? This comprehensive guide will delve into the nitty-gritty of real wood flooring cost, helping you make an informed choice that doesn’t compromise on quality.

Real wood flooring, be it solid hardwood or engineered wood, offers a myriad of benefits that make it a worthwhile investment. Along with its unrivaled aesthetic appeal, wood flooring is renowned for its strength and durability. Species like oak, maple, and hickory are particularly resilient and can withstand heavy foot traffic, making them suitable for high-traffic areas like your entryway or living room. Moreover, with proper care, wood floors can last for generations, saving you from the frequent replacement costs associated with other types of flooring.

But that’s not all. Real wood flooring is also surprisingly low-maintenance and doesn’t trap dust, allergens, or pet dander, making it an excellent choice for any room in your home. Additionally, it can enhance your home’s resale value, making it a smart long-term investment.

Having recognized the value of real wood flooring, the question that naturally arises is, “how much does it cost?” The cost of real wood flooring can vary significantly based on several factors, including the type of wood, the size of the area to be floored, and whether you choose to DIY or hire a professional installer. Don’t fret, though. This guide aims to provide you with a deep understanding of the cost of real wood flooring and tips on how to save money without compromising on quality. So, let’s dive in!

Understanding the Cost of Real Wood Flooring

In the world of home improvements, the allure of real wood flooring is undeniable. It offers timeless beauty, durability, and a high-end finish that can add significant value to your home. However, understanding the cost of real wood flooring is crucial to planning your budget and making the best decision for your home.

Factors Influencing the Cost of Real Wood Flooring

When calculating the cost of real wood flooring, it’s not as simple as multiplying square footage by the cost of the wood. Several factors come into play, each influencing the final cost. Let’s take a closer look at these elements.

  1. Type of Wood: The species of the wood significantly affects the cost of your hardwood flooring. Premium woods like maple, oak, and cherry are more costly due to their durability, ability to repel moisture and dust, and high endurance level.
  2. Quality of Wood: The quality of the wood also plays a significant role in determining the cost of hardwood flooring. High-quality hardwood is more expensive due to its durability and appealing grain and color.
  3. Installation Costs: Hardwood flooring installation requires technical expertise, necessitating the hiring of a professional. This can add a substantial amount to your overall flooring costs.
  4. Maintenance and Care Costs: Hardwood floors require regular care to maintain their beauty and longevity. The cost of any required products or professional services should be factored into your budget.

Average Cost of Real Wood Flooring per Square Foot

The average cost of hardwood flooring varies depending on the type of wood and the quality. On the lower end, you can expect to pay around $6 to $12 per square foot. The average cost ranges from $12 to $18 per square foot, while high-end options can go up to $24 per square foot.

Cost of Installing Real Wood Flooring for Different Room Sizes

The cost of installing real wood flooring will depend on the size of the room and the complexity of the job. For a room of 500 square feet, using an affordable type of hardwood, the installation cost would be around $3,000.

Remember, real wood flooring is an investment that can enhance the value of your home. By understanding the various cost factors and making informed choices, you can find a solution that suits your style, budget, and long-term needs. In the next sections, we’ll explore different types of real wood flooring and their costs, as well as how tree species affect the cost of real wood flooring.

Types of Real Wood Flooring and Their Costs

When it comes to choosing the perfect hardwood flooring for your home, the choices are abundant. Understanding the types of real wood flooring available and their costs will ensure you make an informed decision that suits your style, budget, and long-term needs.

Solid Hardwood Flooring

Solid hardwood is a timeless choice revered for its longevity and classic beauty. Each plank is a single piece of premium-quality wood, available in a variety of species like oak, walnut, and cherry, with unique grain patterns and colors. The price range for solid hardwood flooring can vary between $3 to $20 per square foot for materials, plus $3 to $7 for labor. It’s a worthwhile investment for those who value durability and the authentic beauty of natural wood.

Engineered Wood Flooring

Engineered hardwood flooring provides a more budget-friendly alternative to solid hardwood while maintaining its aesthetic appeal. It consists of a thin veneer of real hardwood on top of several layers of other wood types, making it stable and less prone to warping due to moisture and temperature changes. Engineered hardwood flooring costs range from $3 to $15 per square foot for materials with labor costs between $3 to $10 per square foot. This flooring type is an excellent choice for areas like basements and kitchens that are more prone to moisture and temperature changes.

True Parquet Flooring

True parquet flooring is an art form in itself. It’s made up of thin pieces of real wood arranged in intricate designs that resemble a herringbone pattern. With true parquet flooring, you’re not only investing in a floor but also in a piece of art. Most of the expense of parquet flooring comes from labor as building and arranging the parquet flooring takes more work than installing other types of wood flooring. This leads to longer installation times and proportionally higher installation costs, ranging from $12 to $23 per square foot for labor, and $3 to $15 for materials.

Parquet-Style Tiles Flooring

Parquet-style tiles flooring is designed to mimic the look of true parquet but comes in prefabricated tiles. This flooring type is generally considered less desirable compared to true parquet but comes at a lower cost. It provides the intricate design of parquet without the high labor cost, making it a great budget-friendly option for those who appreciate the aesthetic of parquet flooring.

Each type of real wood flooring has its own unique characteristics and benefits, and understanding these will help you make an informed decision when selecting the perfect hardwood flooring for your home. By considering the different types and their costs, you can choose a real wood flooring option that fits your personal style and budget without compromising on quality.

different tree species wood

How Tree Species Affect the Cost of Real Wood Flooring

Choosing the right tree species for your hardwood flooring is a critical step in balancing aesthetics, durability, and cost. Each species comes with its unique grain patterns, colors, and hardness levels, all of which significantly impact the overall cost of your flooring. Let’s delve into the cost implications of different tree species.


An eco-friendly and cost-effective choice, bamboo flooring ranges from $2 to $10 per square foot. Known for its durability and termite resistance, bamboo is a robust choice that might require slightly more maintenance than traditional hardwoods.

Brazilian Walnut

Brazilian walnut, also known as ipe, is a premium hardwood flooring option. It’s characterized by its rich color and high durability, with costs ranging from $8 to $14 per square foot. Though pricier, Brazilian walnut is a preferred choice for homeowners seeking a luxurious and long-lasting flooring option.


Cherry wood flooring, known for its rich color, is best suited for bedrooms and low-traffic areas due to its softer nature. Prices for cherry wood floors are determined by the specific type, with Brazilian cherry being more expensive than American cherry.


Cypress offers moderate durability and is termite-resistant. It is a less common choice for flooring due to its relatively higher cost and limited availability.


Hickory is a popular choice for its unique grain patterns and high durability. The cost of hickory flooring typically falls between $4 and $8 per square foot. Despite a slightly higher price point, its superior durability makes it a cost-effective option in the long run.


Mahogany flooring, known for its dark color and aging well, typically costs between $6 and $9 per square foot. While it’s a softer wood and more prone to scratches and dents, its classic aesthetics make it a popular choice.


Maple flooring, with its light coloring and fine grain, costs between $5 and $10 per square foot. While it’s slightly more expensive than other options, its renowned durability and high-end look make it a worthwhile investment.


Pine is an affordable yet soft wood, prone to scratches and dents. The material cost for pine flooring varies between $3 and $6 per square foot. It’s an economical choice, but keep in mind that maintenance costs may be higher.

Red Oak

Red oak is a consistently popular choice for its consistent color and finish. The material cost for red oak flooring typically ranges from $5 to $9 per square foot. However, it’s not water-resistant, potentially adding to maintenance costs.


Teak is a high-end wood known for its rich, golden hues and excellent natural water resistance. Prices for teak flooring are typically around $10 to $13 per square foot, making it a more expensive but highly desirable choice.

White Ash

White ash flooring is a durable and attractive option. The hardwood flooring cost of white ash typically ranges from $7 to $10 per square foot. While slightly more expensive, its bold grain and durability make it a worthwhile investment.

White Oak

White oak flooring costs typically range between $6 and $11 per square foot. It’s a strong, durable hardwood flooring option. Though pricier than other wood types, its extensive range of color options and high durability make it a preferred choice for many homeowners.

Choosing the right tree species for your hardwood flooring involves balancing aesthetics, durability, and cost. By understanding the unique characteristics and price points of each species, you can make a well-informed decision that suits both your taste and budget.

real wood flooring cost3 stage pyramid

Pros and Cons of Real Wood Flooring

As you delve into the world of real wood flooring, it’s important to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of this flooring option. Although it’s renowned for its timeless charm and durability, there are also some challenges associated with hardwood flooring that you should be aware of.

Advantages of Real Wood Flooring

Durability and Lifespan: Real wood flooring is renowned for its longevity; it can last anywhere between 50 to 100 years with proper care, significantly outlasting other flooring alternatives. High-quality hardwood species like oak, maple, and hickory are particularly resilient and can withstand heavy foot traffic, making them suitable for high-traffic areas.

Value for Money: Although the initial cost of installing real wood flooring might be higher than some other options, its long-term value becomes evident as time goes on. Its durability reduces the need for frequent replacements, saving money in the long run. Furthermore, hardwood flooring can enhance a home’s resale value, potentially providing a return on the initial investment.

Low Maintenance: Real wood floors are relatively easy to maintain. They can be cleaned by sweeping or vacuuming occasionally and mopping with a damp mop when needed. Plus, they don’t trap dust, allergens, or pet dander as carpets might, making them a healthier choice for your home.

Timeless Aesthetics: There’s no denying the timeless beauty of real wood flooring. Its natural grain and hues can lend warmth and elegance to any space, enhancing your home’s aesthetics.

Disadvantages of Real Wood Flooring

Cost: The initial cost of installing real wood flooring can be high, especially when opting for exotic or premium hardwood species. From purchasing the flooring materials to paying for professional installation, these expenses can add up.

Susceptibility to Damage: Although hardwood floors are durable, they are not impervious to damage. They can be prone to scratches and dents, especially in high-traffic areas or households with pets. Furthermore, wood is susceptible to moisture and humidity damage, which can cause warping or buckling.

Noise: Hardwood floors can be noisy when walked on, creating a tapping or creaking sound. This might not be an issue for everyone, but it’s something to consider if you value a quiet home environment.

Mobility Issues: For some individuals, particularly those with mobility problems or pets with mobility issues, hardwood flooring can be more challenging to navigate due to its smooth and sometimes slippery surface.

Understanding the pros and cons of real wood flooring can help you make an informed decision about whether it’s the right choice for your home. While it has its challenges, the benefits of hardwood flooring—its durability, timeless beauty, and the value it adds to your home—often outweigh the downsides for many homeowners.

real wood flooring costvenn diagram

Saving on Real Wood Flooring Costs without Compromising Quality

As a homeowner, it’s natural to seek ways to save on your home improvement projects without skimping on quality. When it comes to real wood flooring, there are several smart strategies that you can utilize to manage costs effectively. Let’s delve into these cost-saving methods.

Prioritizing Savings Over Appearance

While exotic woods like Brazilian Walnut or Mahogany may be tempting due to their unique appearance, opting for domestic species like Oak, Maple, or Pine can provide similar durability and charm at a fraction of the price. These less expensive wood species are not only cost-effective but also add a warm, timeless appeal to your home. Remember, the real beauty of wood flooring lies in its natural character, so don’t hesitate to choose a less expensive wood that still aligns with your aesthetic preferences.

Considering Engineered Wood

Engineered wood flooring is another excellent option for homeowners looking to save without sacrificing quality. Engineered wood, composed of several layers of thin wood plies laminated together, is an easier-to-install and less costly alternative to solid hardwood. It’s not only more resistant to scratching and warping but also offers a wide range of hardwood styles. If you’re confident in your DIY skills, installing engineered wood yourself can also save on labor costs. However, if you’re unsure, it’s best to hire a professional to ensure proper installation.

Refinishing Old Flooring

If your existing hardwood floors are showing signs of wear, consider refinishing them rather than replacing them. Refinishing can restore the original beauty of your floors, making them look brand new again. This process can extend the lifespan of your existing floors and is often less expensive than installing new ones. Additionally, it’s an eco-friendly approach that reduces waste.

Remember, hardwood flooring is an investment, and these cost-saving strategies can help you achieve the desired look and feel without exceeding your budget. Stay tuned for our next section where we’ll guide you on what to look for when hiring a professional flooring contractor.

flooring contractor

Hiring a Professional Flooring Contractor: What to Look For

After considering all the factors and making informed decisions on the type of real wood flooring, one of the most crucial steps is choosing the right professional flooring contractor. Hiring a professional not only ensures a correct installation but also saves you from potential costly mistakes. Here are some key aspects you need to consider while hiring a professional flooring contractor.

Checking Licenses

The first factor to consider is the contractor’s credentials and experience. Ensure that your potential contractor has valid licenses and insurance. These are not just mere documents but indicators of a contractor’s credibility and commitment to their craft. A seasoned professional like Michael from Mysha’s Flooring, for example, brings not only a wealth of knowledge but also a keen eye for detail and a commitment to high standards.

Checking References and Reviews

Another crucial step in this journey is to verify the contractor’s competence and reliability through the experiences of their past clients. Don’t hesitate to ask your potential contractor for references and take the time to read reviews. This can provide you with a more comprehensive perspective on the contractor’s work quality, timeliness, and professionalism. Positive feedback from previous customers, like the client who felt they hit the jackpot with Michael from Mysha’s Flooring, is a strong endorsement of a contractor’s work.

Understanding Warranties

A good way to secure your investment is to choose a contractor who offers comprehensive warranties. This should cover both the materials and the installation, ensuring that you’re protected against any defects or issues that may arise. California Flooring and Design, for instance, provides a 5-year guarantee on their flooring products, giving you peace of mind knowing that your investment is safeguarded.

In conclusion, hiring the right professional flooring contractor is an essential step in your home improvement journey. A reliable contractor will not only provide excellent installation services but also help you navigate through the complexities of real wood flooring installation, ensuring you a floor you’ll love for years to come. So don’t rush, take your time, and select a flooring partner who will add true value to your home.

Conclusion: Making the Right Choice for Your Home

The road to upgrading your home with real wood flooring may seem like a complex journey, but the rewards are worth the effort. From the timeless elegance of hardwood to the durability and versatility of engineered wood, real wood flooring offers a myriad of benefits that can enhance both the aesthetic appeal and the value of your property. As with any home improvement project, the key to success lies in understanding the costs involved, the options available, and the key factors to consider.

Remember that the cost of real wood flooring is influenced by various factors, like the type of wood, the size of your space, and the complexity of the installation. Companies like California Flooring and Design can provide expert guidance, helping you navigate these variables and select the flooring that best fits your budget and style.

But the most critical factor is the quality of the installation. Hiring a professional flooring contractor who is licensed, reliable, and backed by positive reviews can ensure a smooth and successful flooring project. The peace of mind that comes with a 5-year product guarantee, like the one offered by California Flooring and Design, is an added bonus that can further enhance your investment in real wood flooring.

In the end, the choice of real wood flooring should be a reflection of your lifestyle, your design preferences, and your budget. Whether you opt for the timeless elegance of solid hardwood, the practicality of engineered wood, or the unique appeal of parquet-style tiles, the right choice can transform your home into a haven of comfort and style.

Don’t compromise on quality when it comes to your home. Make an informed decision, choose a reputable contractor, and enjoy the warmth, beauty, and durability of real wood flooring for years to come.