Bamboo Flooring Cost


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 15, 2018

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Bamboo flooring, known to be a sturdy and glistening alternative to hardwood flooring commonly found inside of a home, can resist moisture, stain easily and is often easier to install.

With a recent rise in popularity, a few key factors can determine the final costs of this project if you decide to hire a professional.

Bamboo Flooring Cost
2511 Ocean Executive Rental” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by planetc1

How much does bamboo flooring cost?

The costs of bamboo flooring will all depend on the type of flooring you’re looking to purchase, where you purchase it at, the scope of your job, your geographical location and the contractor you hire.

From the multiple quotes we compiled online, it’s best to budget anywhere from $1.50 to $3.50+ per square foot for the material and another $3 to $4.50 for the labor costs, effectively bringing the grand total for labor and materials ranging anywhere from $4.50 to $10+ per square foot installed.

There are a lot of factors which can affect the price, and for that reason, we highly recommend the free quote comparison website, HomeAdvisor.com.  Here, you will explain your job, and with this information, contractors will contact you with a free, no-obligation quote based on your description.  It’s free and no credit card is required to start.

Type of Bamboo FlooringDescriptionCost Estimate (Materials ONLY)
CarbonizedHeat is applied to the existing bamboo flooring to create a darker, rich color.$2-$4/square foot
FloatingA process which will allow the floors to click together like a puzzle while being installed instead of being adhered to the subfloor directly.$2-$4/square foot
HandscrapedKeeping its natural beauty, a handscraped bamboo flooring keeps the natural look, creating a one-of-kind flooring option for your home.$2-$5/square foot
HorizontalSliced into slats and then pressed together with one slate on top of another, resulting in fewer joint lines.$2-$4/square foot
SolidStalks of bamboo and not really considered a "solid" flooring piece. When adhered during the manufacturing process, manufacturers will use chemicals, heat and pressure to create the finished form.$1.50-$5.50/square foot
Strand WovenA process which takes the bamboo in its natural form and is then shredded into a pulp. This is then pressed into a mold, along with adhesive-based chemicals, to form a solid board plank.$2-$5/square foot
VerticalSimilar to the horizontal mentioned, but the tiny slats are stood up on the thin end and then pressed together to form a bonding plank material$2-$4/square foot

For the materials alone, we researched a handful of popular retailers and included the costs we found in the table below:

RetailerAverage Price (per square foot)
BuildDirect$3-$4.50
Home Depot$1.80-$5
Lowe's$2-$5
Lumber Liquidators$1,50-$4.50



Factors affecting the price

Total square footage:  As with any flooring, the size of your home can greatly affect the price of the flooring.  However, the larger your home is, the more you can be able to save since many retailers will offer bulk discounts once you purchase a certain amount.  The same can be said about professionals when hiring for the installation.

Amount of side work:  Aside from the flooring install, do you want anything else installed or done alongside the job?  As we talk a bit more about it below, fixing the subflooring, adding new baseboards or even moving furniture, for example, can all increase the prices mentioned above.

Geographical location:  This can be said about any professional service as a metropolitan city will always cost more than a rural country location with a much lower cost of living.

Installation method:  There are three popular methods used when installing bamboo flooring:  the glue-down, nail-down method, and click-lock floating method, and each method can affect the costs.  The glue-down method, for example, is often the most expensive option, but it can be the most stable option in the future because the adhesive can allow the wood to expand and contract naturally, according to Ambientbp.com.  The nail-down method, a pinch cheaper, is a faster and affordable process, however, over time, the floor can begin to squeak or even become loose as the seasons naturally contract the nails.

Additional costs to consider

Baseboards:  When replacing any flooring, a good contractor will always recommend replacing the baseboards at this time as well.  While it’s optional, new baseboards can aesthetically look better with your new floors, and can, of course, increase the costs, especially in the case of obstacles.  Be sure to look at our baseboards cost guide we wrote in the past to give you a better idea as to how much you should budget for the job if you wish to replace your baseboards.

Existing floors:  What kind of floors already exist in the home?  In the case the contractor has to remove the floors that have been already installed in the past, then the costs, as well as preparing the subflooring for the bamboo flooring, can increase the costs.  A bad subfloor may need to be sanded, replaced and/or filled with holes to create a smoother surface for the new floors.  As for new builds with no flooring, however, can be much less, of course.

Staining:  Many bamboo flooring options will require it to be stained, either before installing or after the job completes.  In some cases, even if the flooring is already stained, some homeowners opt for a darker shade to match the interior’s decor.  The average gallon of sealant can cost about $40 to $50, but hiring a professional contractor can cost about $2 to $4 per square foot.

Vapor barrier:  A vapor barrier or a foam underlay, another optional add-on, is often installed by homeowners as it can help prevent moisture from seeping in between the actual flooring and the subfloor.  While the bamboo flooring can resist moisture, as we noted in the introduction, it doesn’t mean the subfloor beneath can.  A good underlay can cost an additional $17 to $25 per square foot based on the quotes we received online.

The pros of bamboo flooring

No airborne allergens:  Bamboo flooring, unlike other hardwoods and carpet, will not trap any dust or mites, meaning it can be a great option for allergy sufferers.  Smooth and synthetically fiber-free, as long as the flooring was not created with chemicals, allergy suffers should be this high on their list of flooring choices.

Eco-friendly:  In comparison to other flooring options, bamboo flooring is incredibly eco-friendly as it does not produce a lot of chemical emissions when being processed.  Aside from this, bamboo is also known to be a renewable crop, which simply means it can grow and mature rapidly, often maturing in as little as five years.  In comparison to other hardwood materials, it can take some products up to 30 years to mature.

Easy to install:  Since most bamboo flooring options, at least from what we saw via major retailers online, already have a finishing option, it can help reduce the installation time and even the additional expenses you may need to budget for.  In comparison to other hardwood flooring options, which often need to be stained, bamboo flooring can more than likely be taken off the shelf and installed as it.

Many styles:  When most think of bamboo, they often think of that one color and the shoots, but this is often a misconception as bamboo can actually come in a variety of styles since carbonizing the bamboo during the manufacturing process can actually change the color of the bamboo, all without using any stains or chemical-based finishes.  Pressure heating the bamboo, for example, can warm the sugars, essentially darkening the bamboo.

Moisture resistant:  As mentioned in our introduction, bamboo flooring is a great option for those who are looking for a moisture resistant flooring.  As compared to other wooden floors that can often soak up the moisture if not taken care of in time, all you need to do with bamboo flooring is wipe it off whenever moisture presents itself.

Refinishing is a breeze:  In the future, if you decide you want to re-stain the flooring, then you’re in luck.  Compared to other flooring options, refinishing can be a breeze as all you need to do is sand away the top layer and apply a new layer of stain.  This, in turn, can turn a scratched and/or discolored floor into a fresh looking floor.

It’s stress-free:  In terms of maintenance, bamboo flooring requires very little upkeep, with the exception of a quick sweep or vacuum. While you can consider sealing it occasionally to keep its shine, it will not need to be done as often as you would with wood flooring.

The cons of bamboo flooring

Scratches quite easy:  Unfortunately, bamboo flooring can scratch due to claws, high heels, debris on the ground or furniture moving around, to name a few, often not making it a great choice for a high trafficked area.  While you can prevent scratches, such as taking off your shoes off and sweeping to remove any debris, this option may not be a great choice for those who do not want to worry about the damage that may occur.

Not ideal in humid weather:  If you live in a humid climate, then you may want to second guess your option as bamboo, being moisture resistant, can actually backfire since it tends to crack in high humidity.  If you want to consider it and you live in a very humid climate, then you may want to invest in a dehumidifier to counteract the moisture in the air.

May not be eco-friendly:  Not all brands are created equally, and even if you’re purchasing bamboo flooring, it doesn’t mean you’re helping the environment.  Unfortunately, some brands will use manufacturing processes which are not as environmentally friendly such as treating the bamboo with pesticides or even being transported further distances, which can essentially produce higher carbon emissions.  This can be avoided, however, as you can pay close attention to how the brand manufacturers the flooring to be safe with your choice.


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