If you’re reading this, you probably already know that tile is a popular choice for modern flooring. The functional advantages of longevity and low maintenance are tough to beat in terms of material. On top of that, tile is one of the most affordable options out there, and recent advances in design have made it one of the most stylish and versatile choices available.
But even though tile is typically named one of the cheapest options out there, cost can still be a factor. Homeowners already have a lot of expenses to worry about, and minimizing home improvement/renovation costs is always an attractive prospect—so long as there is no compromise on quality, functionality or workmanship.
In terms of calculating the true cost of tile floors, there are a few basic things to keep in mind. You won’t be able to know the exact costs until you research tile installation specialists in your area and gather estimates, but you can get a fairly accurate idea by keeping the following factors in mind:
What type of tile will you choose?
Tile may have been a basic solution in the past, but it’s quickly become the most diverse flooring option on the market. In fact, there are so many options available that you might feel flustered and not know where to start. Tile flooring is readily available in natural materials like marble and granite. It’s also available in porcelain, ceramic and even synthetic composite materials.
Ceramic is usually on the lower end of the price scale, with prices as low as $2-3 per square foot. Moving up the scale, you’d find natural stone tiles that cost up to $11 or more per square foot. At the very top of the range, you’ll find custom and special designs that cost $30 or more per square foot. As you can see, the material and design you select can greatly influence the overall cost of your tile project.
Will you hire a pro or do it yourself?
Many homeowners like the idea of installing tile themselves. It gives a sense of accomplishment, and learning how to go about a tricky tile installation can be fun. However, the learning curve for tile installation can be steep and expensive. And if you make mistakes, they can be visible for years to come.
Working with a tile installation specialist takes care of those disadvantages. As long as you work with an experience and reputable specialist, you’ll get dependable results according to your agreed budget and time schedule.
The cost of professional work may be higher on average—assuming you have all the proper tools to do the job yourself. If you find yourself making constant trips to the hardware store, you might find your cost savings quickly diminishing. Some professional tile installations can be had for as little as $4 per square foot, with costs ranging up to $10 or more per square foot. Again, the material you choose is an important factor.
How big is the area?
Square footage is an obvious factor when calculating your potential costs. Luckily, most tile installation companies will give you a clear idea of cost per square foot, provided you know what type of material you want. They’ll also have to take any custom accents or unique configurations into account before giving you a precise estimate.
The bottom line on tile floor costs
If you’re skilled and experienced, and you have the time and energy to tackle your new tile floors, you might find the process rewarding and cost-effective. But if you’ve never laid tile before, or don’t have all the equipment you need, the case for bringing in the pros becomes that much stronger. Either way, with careful planning, you’ll have brand new tile floors that will last for years to come!