- Concrete Floor Information
- Concrete Floor Pictures
- Common Questions about Concrete Floors: Are they cold? Are they loud? Are they expensive?
- Popular Flooring Types: Kitchen floors, garage floors, basement floors and more
- Interior Floor Finishes: A comparison of finishing options available
- Concrete Floor Cost
- Installing Concrete Floors
- How to Clean Concrete Floors
- Concrete Floor Design Ideas: Get inspiration from floor installations across the country
- Concrete Floor Applications
- Staining Concrete Floors
- Painting Concrete Floors
- Stenciling Concrete Floors
- Polishing Concrete Floors
- Self-Leveling Concrete Overlays
- Related Information
- Concrete Products:
Concrete Stains | Concrete Overlays
- Design Ideas: Concrete Floor Info
Concrete Floor Cost - What You'll Pay for Polished or Stained ConcreteFind average costs for decorative concrete flooring and the factors that influence how much you'll pay
For a concrete floor with a basic finish, you can expect to pay $2 to $12 per square foot. If you have an existing concrete slab that’s ready for staining, polishing, or application of a decorative coating or overlay, most decorative concrete floor installations can be quite cost-effective.
HOW MUCH DO CONCRETE FLOORS COST?
Here are the base prices for popular concrete floor finishes:
- Stained Concrete Cost - $2 to $4 per square foot
- Concrete Overlay Cost - $3 to $7 per square foot
- Polished Concrete Cost - $3 to $12 per square foot
Flooring details such as the size, colors, finish, and customization can greatly affect the bottom line. In addition, factors like additional surface preparation or working around obstacles like cabinets can also influence the price.
Concrete floor price ranges
Concrete flooring cost ranges between:
- $2 to $6 per square foot for a basic design
- $7 to $14 for a mid-range design
- $15 to $30 for a high-end, customized floor
Refer to the chart below for an outline of basic, mid-range, and high-end concrete floors; what elements those might include; and how their prices compare to alternative flooring options.
FACTORS THAT CHANGE TO THE TOTAL COST OF CONCRETE FLOORING
There are a number of factors that can greatly increase or reduce the cost of a decorative concrete floor. Some you can control, such as the complexity of the project, and others you can’t, such as the floor size and existing condition. Here are some issues that can have a big impact on what you’ll pay:
- Size and shape: Typically, the larger the floor area, the lower the cost per square foot. For example, the square-foot price for a small residential floor is likely to be higher than the square-foot price for a large commercial floor, simply due to what could be compared to a bulk discount. Additional charges will be incurred for surface areas that have angles or curves.
- Obstacles: Multiple doorways, stairs, cabinets, or obstacles to work around lead to increased labor—and sometimes material—costs.
- Colors and materials: Using multiple colors of stain or dye on your floor will not only increase your material costs, but also the labor costs for installation, as contractors must spend time blending colors or applying them separately. Specialty epoxies or metallic coatings also add to material costs as well as labor.
- Design: The more complex your project, the higher the cost for both materials and labor. Customized elements like embedded objects, decorative saw cuts, stenciled designs, and the installation of metal divider strips may increase the total cost substantially—but the results will look amazing!
- Polishing: The amount of polishing it will take to achieve your desired finish (level of shine) can be a large factor in cost for polished floors as this equates to time and labor. Read more about the cost of polished concrete flooring.
- Surface preparation: Cracked or damaged surfaces will require patching or other surface preparation before decorative finishes can be applied. Surface preparation such as cleaning, grinding, removing adhesives or stains, and crack or spall repair can add as much as $2 per square foot to the overall cost of the floor. If a full resurfacing is needed on top or repairs, expect to tack on another $2 to $3 per square foot, for a total $4 to $5 per square foot increase.
- On grade vs. above-grade floors: Raised decks or subfloors will need a cement underlayment installed before the finished flooring can be applied. Typically, installers put down a series of products including waterproofing and metal lathe before applying a concrete overlay and the final decorative color, finish, and sealing coats. These applications can add another $2 to $3 per square foot to the cost of the floor.
- Moisture-vapor transmission: Some floors have a high level of moisture-vapor transmission that will need to be remedied before most decorative coatings, overlays, or sealers can be applied. This is usually not an issue with stained or polished concrete floors, although it can affect the final color. Learn more about problems caused by excess moisture-vapor transmission.
WHICH TYPE OF CONCRETE FLOOR IS MORE AFFORDABLE?
As long as the existing surface is in good condition, basic staining, light polishing, or a simple overlay are all relatively similar in price. If there is a lot of repair work needed, then an overlay may be the better option to hide the repair work. All three options offer multiple ways to customize the look.
ARE CONCRETE FLOORS CHEAPER THAN OTHER FLOORING OPTIONS?
When comparing various flooring options, it’s important to consider cost and maintenance over the lifetime of the floor and not just the initial price tag. Due to concrete’s durability, longevity, and low maintenance needs, many flooring options may initially be cheaper to install but will actually end up being more expensive in the long run—requiring extensive routine maintenance, refinishing, or replacement.
Concrete vs tile?
Depending on your design choices, basic concrete flooring options are comparable to standard ceramic tile installation, while mid-range design choices are more in line with higher-end tile. See the examples above.
Concrete vs wood?
Concrete flooring with a mid-range design profile (see above) is comparable to high-end laminate, hardwood,or bamboo flooring.
WILL IT COST MORE TO REDO OR REPLACE MY CONCRETE FLOORS?
Unless your existing concrete isn’t structurally sound and requires replacement, your best option is to repair any cracks or holes and move forward with an overlay, stain, or polished finish. The cost of removing existing flooring can be quite expensive, not to mention quite messy.
WHAT ABOUT GARAGE FLOORING?
Epoxy floor coatings are one of the most affordable ways to upgrade the appearance of your garage. Coatings also increase the stain resistance and hide imperfections. There is a wide array of colors to choose from, as well as decorative enhancements, like quartz or paint chips that add a speckled look to the floor. Learn more about garage floor coatings.
WHAT ARE THE BEST OPTIONS FOR BASEMENT FLOORING?
Assuming that your basement floor is structurally sound, enhancing it with stain, polishing, an epoxy coating or other overlay can be an economical choice, especially in the long run. Concrete flooring will outlast most other floor covering materials and withstand water exposure much better than water-sensitive coverings that can peel, warp, or mildew—saving homeowners the cost of tearing out and replacing damaged flooring. See 7 reasons why concrete flooring is the best choice for basement flooring.
HEATED CONCRETE FLOORS: ARE THEY WORTH IT?
Radiant in-floor heating systems can not only save energy, but also create a healthier and more comfortable indoor environment. Systems can be installed when new slabs are poured or installed under an overlay on top of an existing slab. Typically, in-floor heating consumes less energy than forced-air systems resulting in lower utility costs. Installation costs, however, can vary widely depending on the type of system, how large the area is, and local materials and labor costs. Learn more about radiant in-floor heating.
HOW DOES CONCRETE FLOORING AFFECT THE RESALE VALUE OF MY HOME?
Another consideration is the increase in resale value that concrete flooring provides. If you are planning on selling your home in the future, you have no idea what the future owners will want for flooring. If you’ve installed carpet and they want hardwoods, they’ll have to consider the cost and time to remove and dispose of the carpet and may ask for a decrease in the purchase price to do so. With decorative concrete floors, new owners can install wood, carpet, tile, or any other flooring right on top without losing time and money to remove existing flooring.