How much should you pay for your next laminate flooring? Hopefully, as little as possible. To that end, I have compiled--and I maintain--this cost list of widely available laminate floors. All prices listed below are per square foot unless otherwise noted, and are for the material only (installation not included). See the last section for further notes.
Unless you are installing the laminate in some unusual location where performance and looks aren't of the highest priority, you can currently expect to pay about $3.00/sq. ft. for decent 8 mm thick flooring. Thickness matters, as embossing is dependent on the overall thickness of the product. This 8 mm floor is usually good for mid-range whole-house installs and for single-room installs in any type of house.
For thicker legacy flooring, you'll want a 12 mm product. While there are some outliers under $3.00, most 12 mm floors are above $3.00 and many quality name laminate brands are twice that amount.
6 mm For Under $1.00: Thin, Bargain Laminates, Poor Appearance
It's rare to find laminate flooring for $0.50 per square foot. And it should probably stay rare since 6 mm laminate is notorious for chipping at the edges. Not only that, the appearance is sub-standard.
Companies offer $0.50 laminate only as a marketing come-on, similar to stores that put balloons and colorful banners in front to induce you to come in Both of the big companies listed next offer only two or three of these rock-bottom cheap products.
- $0.49 (Add UL $0.74). Company: Lumber Liquidators. Product: Donar Oak. Notes: This is Lumber Liquidators' thinnest product.
- $0.79 (Add UL $1.04). Company: BuildDirect. Product: Lamton Columbia Tan. Note: BuildDirect's method of "bargain pricing" items is tied to large quantity purchases. In order to receive this Lamton floor at $0.49/sq. ft., you must purchase 2,300 sq. ft. minimum. In fact, even the $0.79/sq. ft. price is tied to a 999 sq. ft. minimum purchase. You cannot purchase less than this amount.
7 mm For Around $1.00: Thin Laminates, Slightly Better Appearance
The 7 mm laminates are only a hair thicker, but many tend to have more photo-realistic printing.
- $0.69 (Add UL $0.94). Company: Lumber Liquidators. Product: Sadler's Oak.
- $0.99 (Add UL $1.24). Company: BuildDirect. Product: Lamton Valley Pine
- $1.59 (Add UL $1.84). Company: Home Depot. Product: Shaw Native Collection Eastern Pine
8 mm For Around $3.00: Sweet Spot of Laminate Thicknesses
You will find no shortage of 8 mm laminates on the market. This is the minimum thickness in order to maintain edge structure and support embossing deep enough for a realistic texture. Most homeowners choose to install an 8 mm or thicker floor.
- $1.00 (UL Attached). Company: Lumber Liquidators. Product: Dream Home Brazilian Cherry.
- $1.00 (Add UL $1.25). Company: Lowe's. Product: Style Selections Tavern Oak Embossed.
- $2.49 (Add UL $2.74). Company: Lowe's. Product: Pergo MAX Handscraped Heritage Handscraped.
- $3.00 (Add UL $3.25). Company: Home Depot. Product: Hampton Bay Maui Whitewashed Oak. Note: This floor has the appearance of weathered wood.
- $6.20 (Add UL $6.45). Company: Armstrong. Product Name: Bronzed Jatoba.
12-15 mm For $3.00 and Up: Premium, Highly Embossed Laminates
This is the premium line of laminates, as thick as you can get on the general market.
- $0.89 (Add UL $1.14). Company: Lumber Liquidators. Product: Dream Home, St. James Cumberland Mountain Oak.
- $1.79 (Add UL $2.04). Company: Home Depot. Product: Golden Butternut.
- $2.79 (Add UL $3.04). Company: Home Depot. Product: Harbour Oak.
- $7.30 (Add UL $7.55). Company: Armstrong. Product Name: Reclaimed American Chestnut - Sepia. Notes: Has the appearance of hand-scraped wood.
To avoid price-confusion, I have cut down the number of factors to just a few. As noted earlier, the thickness is highly important because embossing, warmth, and the feeling underfoot depend on this factor.
Some laminates come with the underlayment attached and some don't. To keep all numbers on the same page, underlayment is figured into the per-square-foot cost in parentheses. Underlayment is figured at $0.25 per square foot.