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Knowing the Cost of Floor Tiling

This article will provide you helpful information about floor tiling, including the cost, materials, labor, and turnaround time of this home improvement project.

If you are planning to have any of the areas in your house to be floor tiled then you have come to the right article. Here you will learn everything you need to know about having a floor tiling project and that includes the cost, what to expect during the process, and how to choose the right tiles for your specific needs.

How Much Does Fitting of Floor Tiles Cost?

Usually, for an average-sized room, it will cost you around £600-£700 for floor tiles fitting. This includes everything — floor tiles, grout, self-leveling compound if needed, and of course the labour. This price is applicable for a standard shaped room with mid-range, standard-sized tiles that cost around £25 per square meter or less. However, if you need engineers or electricians to remove or refit appliances, additional expenses may incur. 

Usually, a labourer will charge you around £150-£200 a day for floor tiles fitting. The job usually takes two to three days, depending on how big your room is and what tiles you use. 

Tiles Fitting Prices (per square meter)

  • £400 – for a 10-square meters room (this would usually only takes 1 day)
  • £700 – for a 20-square meters room (this would take around 1 to 2 days)
  • £1000 – for a 30-square meters room (this would take around 1 to 2 days)

Cost Breakdown

  •         65% – goes to the materials
  •         30% –  goes to the tradesmen
  •         5% – goes to the waste removal

What to Expect During Floor Tiles Installation

In this article, we are going to talk about the cost of floor tiles installation in the UK. First, you need to look for trusted tilers and kitchen and bathroom installers. Then you need to visit a DIY store to buy the tiles along with the grout.

In preparation, you need to move all the furniture and appliances out of the room. If in case you need to disconnect and move a gas cooker then it’s recommended that hire a gas engineer for the task. Once the room is ready then you can proceed with the laying of the tiles and after that, the removal and disposal of waste. 

You must remember though that price quotes usually do not include VAT. Unless of course you hired someone from a larger VAT registered company. Tradesmen usually operate under the VAT threshold so it’s recommended that you ask them first so you can fix your budget according to it.      

When buying floor tiles, it’s always a good idea to buy 25% more tiles. This is to give allowance to breakage waste. Breakages are inevitable during transport and even more during the cutting of tiles. Sometimes measurements are not exact, too, so it’s recommended that you give allowance in buying the tiles. 

If you want to save money, you can always opt to do the project on your own, especially if you’re fond of DIYs. Or you can also do some part of the tasks to lower down the cost. For example, you may collect the new tiles yourself, lift the old flooring on your own, do the removal of skirting boards yourself, and even opt to do waste removal and the clean-up yourself. 

Taking part in the project will help you save money! It’s like you will only hire labourer to lay the tiles while you do everything else including the waste removal. Remember that homeowners can dispose waste for free while tradesmen have to pay to get rid of commercial waste. So it’s best that you dispose the waste yourself. 

Also, in choosing the labourers to handle your floor tiling project, you may choose a small company. Their overheads are usually lower, not to mention that they may be under the VAT threshold. Thus, their prices are usually 20% less than the larger companies.

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Other Trades You May Need to Hire

Usually, during floor tiling, homeowners change their skirting boards, as well. Skirting boards need to be removed (or at least lifted up) to fit the floor tiles so it’s always better to just replace them during this time.

And usually, companies include doing the skirting boards in their tiling packages. And removal of skirting boards will only leave damage to the plasterwork (which will need patching up, new wallpapers, o repainting later) so it’s best to just replace it this time.

And again, you can do the floor tiling yourself provided that you know how to do the job. But if you haven’t done it before its best that you leave it to the experts. Any DIY mistake may only cost you more. Floor tiling may seem easy but it’s a hard job especially around toilet pedestals or when you’re working on a room with an unusual shape.

So it’s best that you hire someone who knows the job well to ensure that everything will be professionally done.  It takes a lot of patience and experience to do floor tiling so if you have no prior experience about the job, better leave it to the professionals.

How to Deal with Uneven Floors

Before you start with the project, you must ensure that the floor is all prepared. But when you say to prepare the floor, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it must be totally even. Examples are showers, bathrooms, and kitchen drainage where floors are not level to allow the water to drain.

But although the floor doesn’t need to be level, it must be flat. It’s hard to lay tiles on a floor that is not flat. Plus it will only cause inconvenience later as people would end up tripping over uneven floor tiles. So it’s a must that you flatten the floor first before you lay tiles on them. Again, your floor doesn’t have to be even but it needs to be flat.

To flatten a floor, the tradesmen need to lay down plywood (or chipboard) on top of the concrete/screed or old wooden floorboards. This must be done before the new tiles will be installed.

Installation of Floor Tiles over an Underfloor Heating

Heated floors are becoming popular these days so tilers may include that in their pricing in the near future. It is difficult to lay tiles over heated floors because of the fluctuating temperature which may cause the screed, adhesive, and the tiles to expand or contract. And this may cause the tiles to lift or to crack.

This is why choosing the right adhesive and grout is very important when tilers are to work with heated floors. Another thing, if let’s say you need to lay tiles over a hot water piper system which is covered with a mortar screed, it’s necessary that you wait for the creed to be fully cured. And this could take up to 3 weeks. And again, choosing the right grout, tiles, and adhesive is very important because of the changing temperature.

There are a lot of tiles to choose from today. But the question is, what tiles to choose best if you have underfloor heating? Porcelain or ceramic?

Ceramic Tiles Versus Porcelain Tiles

Actually, ceramic and porcelain tiles are somehow related considering the fact that both are made from clay which is then strengthened by heat to produce that hard-wearing finish. The only difference is ceramic tiles are made from darker clays while porcelain tiles are made from whiter clays. Porcelain uses more refined clay which is mixed with other minerals to produce harder and stronger tiles. Porcelain tiles also use a higher temperature during the baking process when compared to the ceramic tiles. 

The two differ in their designs, too. If you notice, the designs on the porcelain tiles seep through the entire tile. Whereas, the designs on the ceramic tiles only appear on the surface. Thus, if there is any wear or damages on the ceramic tiles, it is far noticeable compared to the porcelain tiles. 

Here’s a list of the pros and cons of both ceramic and porcelain tiles. 

Ceramic Tiles


o   Cheaper

o   Easier to cut


o   Indoor used only

o   Tend to absorb more moisture

Porcelain Tiles

  •         Pros:

o   Harder

o   May be used indoor or outdoor

  •         Cons:

o   More expensive

Choosing the right tiles to use is no joke. With a lot of options to choose from, choosing what to buy is no easy task. Usually, porcelain tiles cost £5-£10 more per square meter. Aside from taking into consideration where the tiles will be installed, consider your installer’s skills, too. Make sure that he had experienced working with the type of tiles that you choose.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to tile an average floor?

It may only take one day to work in a small area like bathrooms. But in case you still need to do other things like lifting skirting boards and moving kitchen appliances then it would probably take a couple of days to complete the job.

For larger rooms, however, or for those rooms with awkward shapes, the job would take 2 to 3 days as the cutting and measuring will take more time. The size of the tiles you choose matter, too, as smaller tiles take more time measuring, cutting, and grouting. Whereas larger tiles take less time to work with since it typically covers more area. Thus, choosing bigger tiles will make you save a little bit more.

How much does it cost to install tiles on the kitchen floors?

Working on a kitchen floor would cost you around £600 and that includes everything — the floor tiles, the grout, and if needed, the self-leveling compound. This includes labour, too. So assuming that the area is of standard size, and mid-range standard-sized tiles are used which probably cost £25 per square meter or less, this estimation may apply.

However, if you need the help of gas engineers or electricians to remove or refit appliances, additional charges may apply. It’s best that you request the company to visit your property first before you ask for a price quotation from them. Asking quotes through phone calls is not recommended since they are not usually exact. You need to know the exact quotations before you can choose which company to give the project to.

How do I measure how many floor tiles do I need to buy?

Yes, measuring and coming up with the right number of tiles can be pretty challenging. However, there is actually an easy way to calculate how many tiles you need for your project. To get the square meter-age of your floor area, you just have to multiply the width of the room by its length.

Then take the measurement of a single floor tile of your choice and multiply its length by its width. Then simply divide the floor area by that one tile’s area. That gives the number of the tiles you needed for the project. But of course, always remember to buy 25% more for allowance.

Can all types of floor tiles be used with underfloor heating?

Yes, mostly all types of tiles can work with underfloor heating. However, some tiles are better conductors of heat which makes them a better choice for underfloor heating since they tend to give warmer room.

This includes natural stone tiles and ceramic tiles as they are known to have a harder surface and can maintain a warm temperature for a longer time. So if you have an underfloor heating, it’s best to check with the manufacturer first it the tiles work fine with it.

Can you use wall tiles on the floor, too?

No, you can’t use wall tiles on the floor. However, you can use floor tiles on the wall. Floor tiles are usually thicker as they are designed to be walked on. That is not the case with wall tiles.

Plus most of the wall tiles are slippery because they are not designed for people to walk on them. Certain types of porcelain and ceramic tiles are designed to be slipping resistant so they are safer to use in bathrooms and kitchens. And this is not the case with wall tiles so they are not safe to use on the floor!

Choosing the right floor tiles for your next home improvement project can be challenging. But as long as you know what you need, choosing the right tiles can be as easy as 1-2-3. So a little research won’t hurt. After all, you can never go wrong with the right knowledge.