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How much does it cost to sand and refinish hardwood floors in Westchester?

Cost for refinishing hardwood flooring – Westchester County

cost of refinishing hardwood in westchesterThere are many factors that impact the cost for refinishing hardwood floors, but generally, in Westchester County NY, the price will range from around $2.00-5.00 per square foot, assuming that there is a decent square footage (at least 300 square feet).  Numbers can vary based on whether it’s natural vs a stain, type of polyurethane, # of coats of poly, standard vs. dustless, species of wood (and whether conditioner is needed), type of wood layout (e.g. solid vs. parquet vs. herringbone).


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I often caution homeowners from trying to guestimate their cost based purely on square footage as they will often underestimate the total cost, as they may not factor in “extras” such as steps, repair, carpet rip up and moving furniture.  It’s generally best to get a real estimate from a professional who can both properly measure your area and advise you on type of poly to use and whether repair or any extras are needed.  Different companies charge different amounts on items – some may charge more for sanding but less for rip up, so it’s important to get the total cost.  I’m always happy to give my customers multiple estimates, even if there are some items that they would like to attempt to do themselves (e.g carpet rip up, move furniture, etc).


how much does it cost to sand hardwood floors in westchesterI do want to caution that prices can vary based on the square footage, especially when it is low.  Companies will charge you a minimum, simply because they need to make 3 trips to your house regardless of whether you have 3 sq ft to sand or 300 sq ft.  So assume that for most places, you will probably spend between $600 and $750 for small spaces.


Cost to refinish hardwood floors in Westchester

So, let’s start with the basics. 

How much does it cost to sand and refinish oak floors in Westchester?

Most refinishing companies in Westchester County will charge between $2 and $3.50 per square foot for basic sanding and refinishing of oak.  If it’s natural, it will be towards the lower side, and with a stain it will cost a bit more (often an extra .50 or so). 


hardwood floor refinishing cost in westchester NYIt will generally cost an extra $.50-.80 for an extra coat of poly. This generally is not needed when you are doing natural as you generally have 3 coats of poly on there. But, for a stain, some places will do 2 coats, others will do 3 and others will give you choices. In general, for darker colors and for heavy traffic areas, especially the kitchen, entryway and often first floor, a 3rd coat of poly will help make things last longer.  I will often recommend that customers with busy households (e.g. kids, pets, etc,) that a 3rd coat is great for the 1st floor and is optional for the 2nd floor.


Water based polyurethane often costs a bit more (usually and extra .50 or so), but this can also vary based on which type of water based poly.   The best type of water based poly is Bona Traffic HD, and this may cost you an additional .75 or so.   That means it could cost you an additional +1.25 per square foot when you add in both of these. There are a few companies around Westchester (I won’t mention their names) that tend to use a cheap water based poly which is low grade.  So, if they aren’t charging you extra for water based poly, it’s most likely because they are using a cheap brand that won’t last very long.  Bona is a wonderful water based and if your company is using that, you are probably in good shape.   Here’s more info on water borne vs oil based polyurethane.


Cost of refinishing other species of wood – pine, maple – in Westchester County

cost to refinish pine floors westchesterPine and maple are more challenging woods to refinish. First, they are just more challenging to sand (and you definitely want a high quality company that is familiar with these types of woods as they require different grits and different pressures to be applied.) And, you need to add a conditioner to them to open up the pores, if you are adding a stain. Pine is challenging because it’s soft; maple is challenging as it’s a bit harder and more challenging for the stain to penetrate – in fact, due to the wood itself, it will be blotchy. Most companies will charge a bit more for these types of woods.  In addition, some of the older pines have face nails which must be countersunk, prior to sanding.  Extra costs on this can vary, but may be in the range of .20 to $1.00/sf.  


Cost for refinishing parquet and herringbone floors in Westchester County

cost to refinish herringbone floors westchesterParquet and herringbone floors are more challenging to sand and refinish as the wood goes in 2 directions (or sometimes more), so these floors need to be handled a bit more carefully.  Most sanding companies in Westchester will charge an extra .40-.80 for this work.


Cost for dustless sanding and refinishing in Westchester County

Some companies offer DUSTLESS sanding and refinishing.  Others don’t.  We offer both a standard and dustless option. It’s important to note that dustless is not 100% dustfree…nothing is.  But, it does take care of most of the dust.  You can read more about that dustless sanding here.


Cost for white wash and/or gray floors

It definitely costs extra to do a whitewash floor, or a gray floor which uses white wash.  On the one hand, it might cost an extra .25-.80 cents to add white wash.  However, it’s not quite that simple.  When you do a white wash or gray floor, you need to use water based poly, so that will definitely add to the cost.  And, because these floors are expensive and challenging to maintain, you often want to/need to add an extra coat of poly, as well as trade up to bone traffic.  So, the costs can definitely add up.


Other items that will cost extra when sanding

  • cost to refinish hardwood stepsStair treads – the cost can vary based on type of wood, whether it’s natural (less expensive) or stained (more expensive), type of poly and number of coats, but generally, this will cost  $25-$45 per stair tread.


  • Stair risers – generally, this will cost and extra $25-$40.


  • Banisters – most flooring places will not refinish banisters as it is a different process.  These will need to be hand sanded and this work is generally done by painters.  Often, the cost can be a bit steep because the process is rather involved.  It is labor intensive and takes several trip for the coats to dry.


  • How much does it cost to Refinish Your Hardwood floorsRipping up carpet – This can often be rather costly as there is a lot of labor involved.  Ripping up carpet is relatively simple, but ripping up the staples and the tack strips can be challenging.  Most places in Westchester will charge .80-$1.30 for this work, and if it needs to be hauled away, that will certainly add to the cost as there are dumping fees.  Generally, condos, co-ops, townhouses, etc. require that the carpet be hauled away.  Ripping up carpet on steps or runners will also cost extra.


  • Ripping up vinyl, laminate, parquet, tile, etc.  This can add to the cost as well and prices can vary based on type, area and also, there could be additional repair work, especially if there were nails into the wood underneath, and/or black tar that is left behind.  Usually, this black tar can be sanded off, but it takes extra time and extra sand paper.


  • dustfree sanding and refinishing in westchesterMissing saddles or transitions:   These can easily be added if they are missing from doorways or closets or transitions to areas not being done (e.g. if there is tile in the kitchen or carpet in the bedroom and you want a smooth transition.  These might cost $30-50 per doorway, but can vary based on what’s needed and length of transition.
  • Repair work – this can vary based on size/scope of repair needed.  Sometimes this is needed because pieces are just damaged/have big hold; other times, this is due to pet damage or water stains (i.e. if the floor is dark/black); other times, it can be due to a wall or cabinet that was moved.  The larger the scope, the more for labor and materials.  When the wood needs to be woven in, this can be more intensive.  And, when it’s pine, it will often cost more both to get the wood and to mill it down to the proper width (often pine today is cut in different widths than it was 80 to 100 yrs ago).  Again, this is why it’s best to get a flooring specialist that does this sort of repair often.


  • water vs oil based polyurethane for hardwood refinishing costQuarter round or shoe molding  – Sometimes, after you remove the carpet, there is a gap between the base molding and the floor.  You often can’t tell whether or not this is needed until after the carpet is ripped up.  If it does happen, this is a simple solve, but it can add to your cost due to material and labor, and these will need to be painted afterwards (although most likely your base molding needs to be repainted regardless of this.


  • Furniture move – This can vary greatly.  Some companies won’t move furniture at all; others will and the price will vary.  Generally, you will need to move all of the loose/breakable items prior to their arrival.  And, often, there is a separate trip charge to move the furniture back after the floors have properly dried (i.e. a few days later).

how much does it cost to refinish hardwood in westchesterAs you can see, there are many factors that can impact the cost. It’s generally helpful to consult with a professional flooring company to get real and accurate costs. Often, you can ask them to break it out in different ways (e.g. what if we only did these rooms? Or what is the cost for natural vs. stain or what is cost of oil based vs. water based poly, etc.)

You may find these articles helpful – more about sanding & refinishing hardwood:

color consultation for paint and stain colorsIf you live in Westchester County NY, I offer color consultations to advise customers on paint colors and stain choices. My designer discount at the paint stores usually more than offsets the cost for the hour consultation. Read more here.  I’m now offering phone consultations as well.

How much does it cost to sand and refinish hardwood floors in Westchester?


10 thoughts on “How much does it cost to sand and refinish hardwood floors in Westchester?”

  1. Great article. I appreciate the education so we can make informed decisions.

    We bought a 1950s ranch in Fairfield CT. We haven’t moved in, no carpet to remove, and have about 860 sq ft of hardwood. Needing stain depends on how well the floor sands. Can you help with a quote? Do you get as Far East as Fairfield CT?

  2. Hi Debbie,
    I’m moving to my new apartment next month (Greenpoint, Brooklyn) Apartment has ugly reddish floor although in very descent shape. I would like to turn the color to something more brown less reddish or even to bleach it – if something like that is doable.
    Can you recommend someone who is covering this area? Do you know what are approximate costs for 250-300sf?
    Thank you!

    1. Milan – As long as it’s solid hardwood flooring, you should be able to have it refinished. I don’t know anyone in Brooklyn. Regarding costs,they vary by area. You’ll have to get some estimates from some local contractors. Try

  3. Hi Debbie,
    I want to change the color of my reddish hardwood floor. Can you recommend someone who is covering Brooklyn, NY?

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