Average Labour Cost/Price to Sand/Strip a Floor/Floorboards

To clarify the following prices it is recommended that you read the article in the INFORMATION box below the PRICES…

(These prices are based on a tradesman’s rate of £150.00 per day and a labourer if required at £100.00 per day. This includes the cost of buying and collecting any materials, dumping any waste if necessary and any incidental materials they will need. The minimum price will usually be for a half day)

How Much Does it Cost To Sand/Strip Floorboards?

sand floors

Job 1
The room is empty, normal size, the boards have no gaps and have never been disturbed. To seal the room, sand the floor and apply a coat of the sealer the hire shop sells, (he will have to hire the machines for the day).

This will take 2 men, 1 day plus “materials"

Job 2
Some boards need replacing with matching ones taken from the hallway, which in turn will have to be replaced with new ones. The rest need fixing properly before the job can start.

This will take 2 men, 1.5 days etc.

Job 3
The boards all need to come up and be re laid, plus a couple pinched from the hallway.

This will take 2 men, 2.5 days etc.

Job 4
Job 3 plus fitting 75mm of rigid insulation under the boards as well.

Job 5
If they have to move the furniture, dump the carpet and put all the furniture back again when the job is finished, add……..£275.00 to the above prices.

For your must-see guide to Tradesmen's Rates please click on the map…


A Price Guide and Information Sheet on Sanding/Stripping Floors/Floorboards


Fed up with carpets are we? Fancy a change? Good for you!

Have a look at the floorboards first, are they even worth sanding?. The older they are the better the finished result will be. Victorian boards will look great, 20 year old tongue and grooved ones will “come up” the colour of cheese. I like cheese but I prefer it on my sandwiches!

How wide are the gaps between the boards? You don’t want
any gap really, especially in a ground floor room, or there’s likely to be a howling gale blowing up through them.

If the gaps between the boards are very wide (5mm or so), the only way to realistically close them is to move all the boards closer together. It’s possible to shove wax in though, if the gaps are smaller. If you’re contemplating taking the boards up, will you insulate underneath?

Where will you find a couple of matching boards to fill up the space all that “moving along” has created?

What condition are the Floorboards In?

Are all the boards still in one piece? Years of fitting pipes and cables can turn some floors into a battlefield, especially if any replacement timbers that have been fitted, don’t match (which they wont).

Still going ahead?

Fair play! Obviously the room has to be cleared and make sure he’s sanded floors before. Industrial sanders can swiftly reduce a board’s thickness and if his bonehead labourer leaves it spinning in contact with a board for too long, a truly horrible groove will result. He should sand diagonally across the room and then finish with an edge sander all round.

Sealing the room is pretty important as you might imagine. The machines collect the sawdust as they go but there’s still a lot that escapes and it just loves to go exploring all around your house!

Now for the bit that makes the job! Sealing, varnishing, staining, call it what you will but you have to get it right. 30 years ago I slapped 10 coats of clear matt varnish on my newly stripped Victorian floorboards. The result was truly magnificent, such colour, such depth, such time and effort, such a logistical nightmare! There are all sorts of finishes nowadays, do some research, it’s probably not necessary to section off half the house for a week anymore.

We had 2 dogs, by the end of the year the fabulously shiny room looked like an ice rink. While you’re at it, when you've sanded your floorboards, make sure your chairs don’t have nails under their feet, or your daughter doesn’t wear stilettos.

Suddenly the old carpets didn’t seem such a bad idea.

A-Z of Job Pricing