If you are moving into a new home and decide to change the flooring and install hardwood floors, you will need to order a certain amount of those beautiful planks. But how do you know exactly how much hardwood to order for flooring?

You will probably hear various stories from several people. Your neighbor might tell you that a certain fixed amount is enough – that he managed to cover his home “with just this amount” almost without any waste left. However…

As with any intervention, it is nearly impossible to order the exact amount of flooring which will be used, so be prepared for some waste material. The process of installing hardwood includes cutting so the boards can fit well in every corner of your room. Once cut, the board cannot be attached to another board because its tongue and groove have been removed. Therefore, it is a must that you order some amount of extra hardwood material.

how much hardwood to order for flooring

Prime factors for determining how much hardwood you need to order

First and foremost, estimate the hardwood floor area – roughly, at least. Then, keep in mind: percentage. It’s not about two or three square feet extra no matter the room size. Size really matters in this case. A general rule of thumb is to add about 8-10% to the total floor area. Sometimes, up to 5% may go to a possible defective material – that is, small imperfections depending on the type of the wood (for example, some sun discoloring from reclaimed wood).

If you prefer a diagonal hardwood floor across the room, keep in mind that it will produce more waste cut-offs than the conventional installation, so you should be comfortable with approximately 12-15% more than the total area.

order the right amount of hardwood for your floor

Diagonal hardwood floor or any other specific pattern requires extra supply for cutting and tailoring. Photo by © Hardwood Floors Magazine

Second, take into consideration the shape of the room. Is it a simple square room? Does it have “interruptions“ from columns, partition walls, or some other angular shape? The simpler the floor shape is, the less wastage there will be in the arranging of the floor.

Craft is in the details

A simple square room is the easy part. However, for tailoring on and around stairs or areas around fireplaces, columns, and closets, you will need to provide extra supply, usually about 10-15% so you won’t risk any shortage of material to finish your project.

The best and most convenient way is to consult a professional to do the right math for you. Don’t hesitate to call us for a free consultation!