30 Apr Ultimate Flooring Cost Guide – 2023 Sydney & NSW
Will you go for the real solid timber flooring, or a more affordable hybrid or laminate floor? When it comes to actually deciding which floor to purchase, it all goes down to your budget in the end. Whats more, you will find that some flooring retailers will sell the same product for twice the price of other places!
It is important to understand where your good money is going, which is why our research team has gathered and aggregated the appropriate Sydney & NSW price range of almost every floor covering you can come across as of 2021.
This Ultimate Guide covers the updated prices of supplying and installing:
- Solid Hardwood Timber
- Engineered Timber
- Hybrid Flooring
- Laminate Flooring
- Vinyl Plank Flooring
- Bamboo Flooring
Solid Timber Flooring Cost
Solid timber refers to the actual wood planks cut from trees which are designed for interior floor covering. These come in the Australian and local offshore hardwood flooring, as well as European and American oak wood.
Both hardwood and oak families are available in two forms as pre-finished timber and raw timber. Raw timber requires sanding and polishing before it becomes suitable as flooring, whereas pre-finished timber has already been ‘pre-finished’ within the factories.
Solid Timber Supply Cost:
Raw Solid Timber Pricing:
Raw timber comes with a wide price tag between $80 – $130 for every square metre of material. The difference lies in the species of wood, the thickness and the width of each plank.
Pre-finished Solid Timber Pricing:
Pre-finished solid timber is harder to find due to offshoring the sanding and polishing of the raw timber. Pre-finished hardwood floors costs $120 – $150 per square metre. Whilst they are more expensive, you will still be saving overall because pre-finished timber doesn’t require additional sanding and polishing once installed, unlike raw timber.
Timber Grading & Pricing:
Timber comes in different grades that measure how clean and consistent the wood is. They come in three main grades: Select, Standard and Feature grade.
Most of the commercialised solid hardwood floors are select grade because they have the least knots and defects. Select grade hardwood is considered the most beautiful and premium option, typically costing around $100 – $150 per square metre as reflected earlier in the article.
Standard grade solid timber floors bring a few knots and variations in colour that don’t necessarily ruin the wood. These are still commonly used in homes or commercial settings, although less popular than select grade counterparts. These cost less and range around $80 – $120 per square metre depending on the species of hardwood.
Some lower feature-grade timber with more knots and defects can be found as low as $60 – $80 per square metre, however, are usually aesthetically unsuitable for residential purposes unless intentionally designed for a rustic experience. These are common in bars and restaurants.
Solid Timber Installation Cost:
Solid Hardwood Installation
The typical cost of laying solid timber flooring is fairly high at around $40 – $60 per square metre. This is because solid timber must be directly attached to the subfloor, usually with nails and glue. Glue and nail installation will cost almost double that of a floating floor installation.
Timber Floor Sanding & Polishing
Raw timber requires an additional sanding and polishing job which adds $40 – $60 per square metre on top of the laying price. This usually includes two coats of polyurethane lacquer, which can be customised between a water-based or oil-based finish. Water-based polyurethane has less formaldehyde emissions which means healthier air quality, whereas oil-based polyurethane gives a slightly more durable surface.
Timber Surface Staining
Another benefit of raw timber is the option to customise the surface colour during sanding and polishing. This was a popular practice in the 80’s and 90’s and is still widely available in many different colours. If you are looking to stain the surface of your floors, expect to add an additional $15 – $30 per square metre depending on the colour you are aiming for. Darker colours tend to require more coats and hence cost more.
Engineered Timber Flooring Cost
Engineered timber flooring is a slightly more affordable floor covering which also uses real timber. The difference is that engineered timber flooring is made up of multiple layers:
- Wear Layer – All types of flooring including engineered timber are coated in a (usually) aluminium oxide wear layer which protects the surface from scratches and water.
- Timber Veneer – Engineered timber contains a real layer of authentic timber, either a hardwood or European oak which exudes the gorgeous natural beauty. These are typically 2 – 6mm thick.
- Core Board – The timber veneer is attached to a core board which is usually made of plywood. This minimises warping from temperature and moisture fluctuations. More innovative engineered floors like HydroPro Timber use a 100% waterproof core board for maximum water resistance.
Engineered Timber Supply Cost:
You can typically purchase engineered timber from $70 – $130 per square metre. The thickness of the plank has a very big impact on the amount of real timber (the good stuff) used in manufacturing. This in turn affects the price of the engineered floor.
Timber Veneer Thickness:
- 0.6 – 2mm Veneer: $70 – $80 per square metre.
- 2 – 4mm Veneer: $80 – $100 per square metre.
- 4 – 6mm Veneer: $100 – $130 per square metre.
Engineered Timber Installation Cost:
Most engineered timber flooring is also much cheaper to install than solid timber as they are classified as a floating floor. Floating floors do not require glue or nails during installation, instead they use a click-lock system which is laid similarly to a giant jigsaw puzzle. Direct-stick installation with glue is also an option in some cases for thicker engineered timbers to minimise warping.
- Floating Installation: Installers typically charge $30 – $40 per square metre for straightforward engineered timber installations.
- Direct-Stick Installation: As it is more complicated, you can expect to pay anywhere between $40 – $50 to install per square metre. Can go even higher in some cases if additional plywood or floor preparation is required.
To learn more about whether engineered flooring is the right choice for your property, check out our complete guide choosing to engineered flooring.
Hybrid Flooring Cost
Hybrid flooring definitely shook the market over the last five years with its waterproofing capabilities and hardwearing surface. Most hybrid floor ranges have acoustic underlay pre-attached which can save you the trouble and expense of purchasing them separately if required by strata / body corporates. Surprisingly, hybrid floors are also on the more affordable end of the market.
Hybrid Flooring Supply Cost:
SPC Hybrid Flooring
By far the most common type of hybrid flooring, SPC stands for “Stone Plastic Composite”. These are made from approximately 70% limestone and 30% plastic to make a fully waterproof floorboard that looks just like real wood. You can expect to pay $35 – $70 per square metre, with the price varying depending on the thickness and brand.
Buyers beware, there are some very thin and cheap hybrid floors in the market, however anything thinner than 6mm requires an absolutely flat subfloor. You can very well end up paying more for subfloor levelling or risk the hybrid floor’s locking system cracking and failing over time when it would be more worthwhile to pay for a thicker plank from the beginning. At FloorVenue, our motto is to do it once, do it right.
WPC Hybrid Flooring
The first model of hybrid flooring to ever enter the market was the WPC hybrid floor, meaning “Wood Plastic Composite”. These are softer underfoot and tend to offer better noise reduction, however, are not as durable as their SPC counterparts. These are typically $45 – $60 per square metre and are much less popular nowadays.
SWC Hybrid Flooring (Super Durable)
The newest generation of hybrid flooring combines the waterproofing of hybrid flooring with the commercial-grade surface of the toughest laminate floors. SWC or “Stone Wood Composite” hybrid flooring is the only certified commercial grade hybrid floor in the market which offers a super robust wear layer. SWC hybrid flooring typically costs $60 per square metre for supply only, however pay off the premium by lasting much longer.
Hybrid Flooring Installation Cost:
Hybrid flooring is a floating floor which makes it simple and cheap to install. Labour costs generally range from $30 – $40 per square metre for straight forwards hybrid flooring installations. Furthermore, most hybrid flooring has pre-attached acoustic underlay which means you can save even more, especially if you need noise reduction.
One important factor to keep in mind is that hybrid floors require a very even subfloor. It is possible to incur extra subfloor levelling charges which vary significantly in cost depending on severity. You can find more about subfloor requirements and levelling when installing floating floors like these.
Interested in hybrid flooring? Check out our full range of hybrid floors here! Did you know that we have a hybrid flooring cost calculator for each one of our products? You can use it for a free quick quote today!
You can learn all the hybrid flooring pros and cons in our complete guide.
Laminate Flooring Cost
Laminate flooring is the most common type of floor covering, owing to its higher scratch resistance and being the most affordable type of flooring available. Made of high-density fibreboards (HDF) and advanced printing technology, laminate floorboards can feel and look like real timber.
Laminate Flooring Supply Cost:
As the most affordable floor solution in the market, you can expect to pay anywhere from as low as $20 up to $60 per square metre for laminate flooring. The large range in price can be attributed to the many different thicknesses, abrasion ratings and water resistance tiers.
- Floorboard Thickness – The thickness of laminate floors determine how tolerant they are against uneven subfloors. As thicker floorboards require more material, they are also more expensive.
- Abrasion Coefficient (AC Rating) – The AC rating measures how well the laminate floor can hold against scratches and dents. This is measured from AC1 – AC6, where higher is stronger and more expensive.
- Water Resistance – Laminate floors come with water resistance. These are usually found in tiers of 24 hours, 48 hours or 72 hours. Buyers beware, no laminate flooring is truly 100% waterproof, despite false marketing out there that may try to convince you otherwise.
Laminate Flooring Installation Cost:
Laminate floors are the easiest to install as a floating floor and should be generally charged somewhere between $30 – $40 per square metre, with underlay.
Similar to hybrid flooring, they also require a flat and even a subfloor. If you need additional floor levelling, feel free to reach out to us for a free inspection and quote.
If you are interested in viewing laminate flooring options, we have over hundreds in our laminate flooring range!
Vinyl Flooring Cost
Vinyl flooring is commonly laid in areas with exposure to moisture, especially in areas like shops and gyms. Their waterproof and softer polyvinyl chloride (PVC) composition makes it especially suitable as a commercial floor covering. Some vinyl flooring options even have anti-slip features for bonus safety!
Vinyl flooring comes in two main forms; “Vinyl Plank Flooring” and “Vinyl Sheet Flooring”. The difference is that vinyl planks come in individual planks, whereas the sheets come in a big roll, typically two metres wide and are welded together at the joins.
Vinyl Flooring Prices:
Residential use vinyl flooring costs $30 – $60 per square metre and is hence on the more affordable side. Factors influencing the cost of residential vinyl planks include the material thickness, the wear layer quality and how realistic the overall design is.
Commercial vinyl sheets can range anywhere from $30 up to $80 per square metre depending on the function and purpose. They come with different abrasion classes, slip ratings, anti-static features and fire rating.
Lower-quality vinyl flooring can come off as very fake and can also emit respiratory irritants known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
Vinyl Flooring Installation Cost:
Vinyl planks and vinyl sheets are designed to be glued down to the subfloor. The cost to install vinyl flooring is approximately $30 – $50 per square metre, depending on the amount of glue and whether subfloor preparation is required.
Commercial vinyl flooring installation in hospitals and laboratories may cost higher because of additional coving around the perimeter. Coving basically means wrapping the vinyl sheet up the walls to prevent liquids like chemicals from escaping into the earth.
If you are looking to buy vinyl flooring, we have a large range of vinyl plank colours here!
You can learn more about different types of vinyl floors and whether they suit your purpose with our complete guide to vinyl flooring.
Bamboo Flooring Cost
Did you know that bamboo can reach maturity in only 4 to 7 years as opposed to hardwoods which take upwards of 40 years? Bamboo flooring has been recognised as the most sustainable and natural flooring since its first appearance two decades ago. It is also considered the middle-priced flooring as it is a little dearer than synthetic floors like laminate and hybrid, but are more affordable than solid or engineered timber.
Today, bamboo flooring comes in two forms – strand woven bamboo flooring, or waterproof bamboo flooring. Waterproof bamboo flooring has a thin veneer of real bamboo fused to a 100% waterproof composite base. They offer complete immunity to warping from temperature or moisture.
Historically, there was also vertical and horizontal bamboo flooring. However, they have failed the test of time owing to weaker durability and are no longer sold today.
Bamboo Flooring Supply Cost:
- Strandwoven Solid Bamboo Flooring: $70 – $80 per square metre
- Waterproof Bamboo Flooring: $90 – $120 per square metre
Bamboo Flooring Installation Cost:
The cost of a bamboo flooring installation is fairly affordable from $30 – $40 per square metre as a floating floor. Sometimes it is necessary to direct-stick the bamboo floors into the subfloor in areas which may have higher humidity to minimise swelling. Direct-stick installing bamboo flooring will generally cost between $40 – $50 per square metre.
Our large range of bamboo flooring will have you spoiled for an option, check out the full bamboo range here!
If you wish to learn more about bamboo flooring, you guessed it, we have a complete bamboo flooring pros and cons guide!
Conclusion – Flooring Cost Per Square Metre
That was a huge mouthful! We’ve constructed a tabulated version of the key takeaways for a more convenient overview. Hopefully, this will help you understand the costs holistically.
|Flooring Type / Service||Material Price Per SQM||Installation Price Per SQM|
|Laminate Flooring||$20 – $60||$30 – $40|
|Hybrid Flooring||$35 – $70||$30 – $40|
|Vinyl Flooring||$30 – $60||$30 – $50|
|Bamboo Flooring||$70 – $80||$30 – $40|
|Engineered Flooring||$70 – $130||$35 – $40|
|Solid Timber Flooring||$100 – $150||$40 – $60|
|Sand & Polishing||N/A||$40 – $60|
If you have any further questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for a free consultation, quote or on-site inspection! FloorVenue has been laying floors in homes for over two decades running.