Professional hardwood floor refinishing costs $2 to $6 per square foot or $1,200 to $2,400 total on average. Refinishing hardwood stairs costs $25 to $85 per step.
Refinishing includes sanding the surface layer to remove dings, scratches, or discoloration. After sanding, most contractors add a stain and a clear seal to protect the floor. Instead of sanding, you can lightly buff and recoat hardwood for $1.00 to $2.50 per square foot.
Hardwood floor refinishing is cheaper than the cost to install new hardwood floors, which is $6 to $15 per square foot. Floors should be replaced instead of refinished when they have substantial water damage, warping, or subfloor issues.
Refinishing hardwood floors is worth it because it increases the value of your home and may prevent costly repairs or replacements later on. Solid hardwood floors can be refinished 4 to 10 times, depending on thickness and age, before they shold be replaced.
Homes built before the 1920s often have thinner wood flooring that shouldn't be sanded. In those cases, buffing and recoating is a better option.
Tipping floor refinishers is optional but appreciated. Most contractors are paid an hourly wage and do not expect tips. You may choose to tip $10 to $30 per person if their work exceeds your expectations.
Hardwood floor refinishing takes 2 to 6 days, depending on the home size, layout, and finish type. After refinishing:
You should refinish hardwood floors every 7 to 10 years, especially when the floors have:
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