Edinburgh Hardwood Flooring Specialists

Hardwood flooring combines classic style with modern fashions

Book a reliable, Edinburgh hardwood flooring fitter for expert hardwood flooring installation.

Whether engineered or solid wood, it’s hard to better the comforting luxury of a hardwood finish floor (with a few sheep skin rugs thrown in!).  

Call HomeForce on 0131 315 0000, email us on info@homeforce.co.uk or complete the form on this page to arrange a survey and quote from a reliable, Edinburgh hardwood flooring specialist.

Read on for budget costs to buy and fit hardwood flooring, some top tips to ensure perfectly laid flooring, our view of the pros and cons of hardwood flooring and the differences between solid hardwood, engineered hardwood and laminate flooring.

What is Hardwood Flooring?

As the name suggests, hardwood flooring is flooring made from real wood (as opposed to composites or veneers, or any other materials). The most common wood used is oak (which even of itself has multiple types colours, and patterns) but maple, cherry, ash, walnut, teak and so on, are also hardwoods used flooring.

Soft wood floors are most usually pine, spruce, cedar, fir and so on; woods that are relatively fast growing. Soft woods are less durable and scratch resistant than hardwoods. AND, many would argue, don’t deliver quite the same feeling of luxury.

What are the pros and cons of hardwood flooring?

As with any such assessments these lists can be subjective but here’s a few things that may help you weigh up if hardwood flooring is right for your property:


    • Hardwood flooring is relatively expensive to buy compared to laminate, LVT, carpet or even tiles.
    • In traditional Edinburgh tenements hardwood flooring can conduct noise to flats below (consider investing in good quality acoustic insulation if not a ground floor property).
    • The very fact that hardwood is more durable and scratch resistant makes any dings, gouges or scratches all the more heart breaking.
    • Hardwood flooring installation is best done by experts whereas, for example, laminate can be a DIY job.
    • Once your hardwood floor is down it’s best left down. As opposed to carpets, vinyl or even to some extent laminate, if access under the floor is needed at a later date it can be difficult to get it back down as well as it was originally installed.


    • Hardwood floors are warm underfoot and maintain a relatively even temperature all year round.
    • A hardwood floor is highly compatible with underfloor heating.
    • The aesthetics: hardwood floors are beautiful! Many flooring types try to replicate a wood finish (laminate, LVT, rolled vinyl and even tiles). However, while imitation can be the greatest form of flattery it’s hard to beat the original.
    • Every board is unique – a unique piece of artwork.
    • Durability: with proper care a hardwood floor can last a life time (or several lifetimes)
    • Hardwood flooring offers a great variety of colours, tones, textures and grains. There’s something to suit every taste.
    • Resale value: hardwood flooring is one of the few aesthetic projects that can add value to your property.
    • Hardwood flooring is great for allergy sufferers as it doesn’t trap dust, pollen, animal hair etc.
    • The flooring retains uniform colour even with varying levels of sun exposure.
    • Hardwood floors are timeless – they effortlessly combine classic with modern.

How do you care for a hardwood floor?

    • Your hardwood floor may need refinishing or recoating periodically but not frequently.
    • It may need re-sanding, although there’s a limit to the amount of times that can be done, especially with engineered hardwood.
    • Make sure you mop up any water spills immediately.
    • And that’s about it – though you might want to put felt pads on the feet of any furniture that is on hardwood floors.

Different types of hardwood flooring

There are two different types of board – solid wood and engineered wood.

Engineered hardwood flooring is made with a top layer (veneer) of real, natural wood bonded over a substrate of high-quality plywood or a composite material (such as MDF) made from timber by-products. Note that MDF as a substrate will make the boards less water resistant.


Solid wood flooring is just that. Solid wood all the way through. With solid wood, a hardwood flooring can be re-sanded several times, however engineered board can probably be re-sanded twice at the most.

Oak Hardwood Flooring
Oak flooring comes in many shades
Selecting Hardwood Flooring
A specialist will help you select what’s right for you and your budget

Isn’t laminate just as good?

Well, that depends on what you mean by good. For a wood effect flooring, sure, Laminate does the job but the look is cheaper and there’s very little similarity in the actual product. Laminate is fibre board made of wood by-products, the boards are much thinner and the pattern on laminate boards repeat so care should be taken to randomise the layout when laying.

Solid wood flooring is just that. Solid wood all the way through. With solid wood, a hardwood flooring can be re-sanded several times, however engineered board can probably be re-sanded twice at the most.

Top tips for laying hardwood

  1. As with most property projects (well, anything really) preparation is the key to a good end result. This is particularly true of hardwood flooring. Ensure the sub floor is pancake flat and level, has no more than 6% moisture content and is clear of any chemicals, adhesives or dust and debris. Think the “Princess and the Pea”; even a small bit of dirt, or a slightly raised nail under a board can cause sleepless nights.
  2. Read the instructions. Sounds obvious but not all hardwood floors are laid the same or are suitable for every environment.
  3. Mind the gap. Wood, like any material, expands and contracts as it heats and cools. Ensure a sufficient expansion gap is left around the edge of the room. The larger the area of flooring, the larger the gap that may be needed. The gap can be concealed under skirting or under beading.
  4. To give your floor strength lay the hardwood flooring perpendicular to existing floor boards if possible. This may not always be possible for the aesthetics outcome required, especially if the floor is to be laid in a herringbone style.
  5. Acclimatise the flooring. Ideally leave the wood (in open packs if possible and away from radiators) in the room it is to be laid in for 7 days or more for solid wood or three days for engineered wood. However, don’t leave it in rooms with wet plaster or floor screed or rooms that are temporarily damp for other reasons.
  6. Operate to a system. Lay things out in advance and don’t move materials or tools more than absolutely necessary.

So, what does it cost to lay a hardwood floor? (Labour charges)

The labour charge for fitting hardwood flooring can range between £40 to £80 / sq m + VAT. However, contractors will usually quote a fixed price based on the job but worked around a day rate of £200 – £300 + VAT.

Key factors affecting the labour charge include

    • The preparation required.
    • Type of flooring (i.e. type of wood, the grain, engineered or solid, specific installation requirements).
    • The room shape (square rooms = easy, rooms with alcoves, funny corners, lots of doors = complex).
    • The pattern required and uniformity of boards; (boards all same size, in same direction = easy, herringbone or boards different sizes = complex).
    • How the expansion gap is to be accommodated.
    • The size of area (small areas will be relatively more expensive per square meter than larger areas).

Costs of the flooring (Materials)

The sky’s the limit. The writer has spoken to manufacturers who sell hardwood flooring at £3,000 / sqm.

But more down to earth prices would typically be from £35 / sqm to £200 / sqm

Don’t forget to also allow for underlay and whatever may be needed for the sub-floor (plywood, new floorboards, levelling compound and so on).

Also allow for work removing and reinstating skirting (to allow for expansion gap) and any potential decorating or plastering that may result. There could also be a need for doors trimmed, threshold bars between rooms with different floor coverings to be fitted.

Variety of Hardwood floors
There’s a hardwood flooring for every taste


Hardwood makes a great choice with a long list of benefits if you are thinking of upgrading flooring. In particular a hardwood floor can enhance the splendour of an Edinburgh tenement property like no other flooring can. Timeless beauty, easy to clean, great durability and massive range of options mean it’s hard to go wrong with a hardwood floor.

Give us a call, send us an email or complete the form on this page to arrange a consultation with an Edinburgh Hardwood Flooring Specialist.