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Old 04-30-2006, 10:25 PM
Lochdale Lochdale is offline
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Cost of Hardwood Floors

I am hoping that Doper or two might be able to help me out. After breaking up with the Fiance I took over the home. Sadly, she had all the style, taste and good sense in the relationship. I am currently sitting on inflatable furniture. Anyhoo, I hired an interior designer to give me a hand. As way of background, I live in a 2 bedroom condo on Chicago's northside. It's about 1400 sq ft. with a 400 sq. ft. private garden/patio so it' s a nice little place. The livingroom/dining room and the kitchen are all hardwood floors. As I inherited the cats ( ) I want to tear up the carpeting from the two bedrooms and do hardwood flooring there. I'm also going to redo the hardwood floors in the living rooms.

Here is the estimate I received. I asked them to do it a la carte as I want to be able to pick and choose what I do. It seems very expensive but then I know nothing about this sort of thing so I'd appreciate any thoughts/comments/suggestions.

1. Sand and finish wood flooring in the living room and other areas - $2,450

2. Installation of new oak flooring in two bedrooms - $4,500

3. Installation of new base and shoe moldings in both bedrooms-$1,750

4. Finish carpentry work for four (4) valances will be done: Two (2) in the Master
bedroom and two (2) in the guest bedroom - $2,200

So over 10k. The crown molding cost is also a lot higher than I expected.

There is hardwood under the existing carpeting though I can't speak to the quality.

Anything I should be watching out for or worrying about?
Cheers.
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Old 04-30-2006, 10:26 PM
Lochdale Lochdale is offline
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Hmmm Mods, this may be more of a IMHO so feel free to move it if you agree. Sorry.
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Old 05-01-2006, 12:33 AM
AnabolicDoberman AnabolicDoberman is offline
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Holy crap! 10k? Have you thought about laminate flooring? I am planning to install laminate in my living room. I have about 300sq feet to do-me and my uncle are going to do it, it is going to cost about $350-$400
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Old 05-01-2006, 03:45 AM
madmonk28 madmonk28 is offline
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When we bought our house in DC the hardwood floors were in really bad shape. We didn't have any new floors put in, but we had the floors sanded and refinished on two floors of our rowhouse and it came to $3,500.

You might want to do it in stages, get the hardwood floors sanded and finished and hold off on installing new floors.
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Old 05-01-2006, 03:49 AM
madmonk28 madmonk28 is offline
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Sorry for the double post, but I wanted to add that we are really happy we got the floors finished. I think it add to the value of the home and I know I really enjoy how it looks, the difference is night and day.
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Old 05-01-2006, 08:29 AM
Oy! Oy! is offline
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Certain of the pines (white and yellow, I believe) are almost as hard as hard woods - they'll certainly outlast your lifetime. And it's much much cheaper - like 1/5-1/3 of the price for materials. I have it in my dining room. (The rest of the downstairs had hardwood flooring when I bought the house).

Pine looks knotty and has a fair amount of grain. Personally, I like the way it looks, but it probably wouldn't be for everyone. You can also get it in varying widths - I'm not all that taken with the 2-3" boards all in a row.

Bear in mind that your decorator is probably operating on a percent of cost basis, and will likely argue against any change to less expensive materials.
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Old 05-01-2006, 08:47 AM
Philster Philster is offline
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Or get birch hardwood/engineered and prefinished in the finish you look.

Engineered hardwood is cheaper and more stable than solid oak - and with a factory finish, should outlast (15-25 years min) anything.

Crown molding ain't cheap cause crown molding aint easy. Working over one's head with compound angles ain't a walk in the park.
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Old 05-01-2006, 09:36 PM
Lochdale Lochdale is offline
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Thank you guys. I've decided to fire the decorator and go out and get some real bids for the floors. I'll pay up to 5k for a good job but 10k for such a small place seems nuts.

The crown molding makes sense but that's for another day. Had to buy a new water heater and a new garbage disposal so not in a position to throw around money at the moment.
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Old 05-01-2006, 10:06 PM
rbroome rbroome is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lochdale
Thank you guys. I've decided to fire the decorator and go out and get some real bids for the floors. I'll pay up to 5k for a good job but 10k for such a small place seems nuts.

The crown molding makes sense but that's for another day. Had to buy a new water heater and a new garbage disposal so not in a position to throw around money at the moment.
I don't live in Chicago so I am not sure about those prices. I do live in S. Louisiana where we have huge demand for new floors-hence huge price increases. Even here that is a very high price to pay. However, this situation is Business 101. Get bids. Pay your designer to write some specs for the work. Bid it out. For a 5-10K job, you aren't going to get much back except estimates, but that will at least tell you what is the going price. Around here an engineered floor, installed comes in at less than $10/sq ft. Installers are getting $3.50/ft2.

We would never consider solid wood on slab-too wet down here. Engineered wood is the way to go unless you are certain your slab will always be bone dry.
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