How Much Does Porcelain Tile Flooring & Installation Cost?
$10.75 – $21.00 Per Square Foot Installed
Average Cost of Porcelain Flooring
Expect estimates of $10.00 – $16.00 per square foot for the most popular porcelain bathroom and kitchen flooring. If you DIY, expect to pay between $4.00 and $15.00 per square foot for tile and installation materials. However the total retail cost range is much wider and is discussed below.
The most typical range, $10.00 – $16.00 per square foot includes tile, installation materials such as spacers and grout, and labor costs. Removal and disposal of old tile flooring is a separate cost.
Overview of Having Porcelain Tile Installed
Porcelain tile is tougher and more durable than ceramic tile. Made from clay dust, it is fired at extreme temperatures to create a dense, very hard material that is also waterproof. This make it ideal for kitchen flooring and bathroom flooring.
You’ve got an amazing array of choices with porcelain tile. Individual tile sizes start at 1” square and can be as large as 24”x48”. As with ceramic tile, popular sizes are 6”, 12” and 24” square tiles. Subway-style, chevron, mosaic and hexagon tiles are among the many additional styles available.
Classic polished tile, marble-look and wood-look porcelain are popular and range from affordable to mid-priced. Decoratively glazed tiles can cost much more. Finish options are matte, textured, semi-gloss and gloss types.
This porcelain flooring cost estimate includes cost factors for tile and installation plus retail prices for common tile types. As with any flooring type such as hardwood flooring, the largest cost factor is how much tile flooring you install. View all our home flooring cost guides.
We’ve researched porcelain tile flooring costs from reliable sites and invited readers to submit their project costs. Considering bookmarking Costimates and returning to share your porcelain flooring price for the benefit of others.
Product and Installation Supplies Cost Details
Porcelain Tile Cost Factors
Factors related to retail cost are listed first followed by installation factors.
- Retail Price – Prices range from less than $2.00 to more than $50.00 per square foot, a range wider than you’ll find with other flooring materials.
- PEI Rating – The Porcelain Enamel Institute abrasion test or rating determines where tile can be used. Tile with a rating of 0 and 1 are OK for walls but not floors. A PEI of 2 is suitable for bedrooms and bathrooms – “no shoes” areas of your home. Most residential tile has a PEI of 3 is rated for all residential and light commercial use. Those with a rating of 4 or 5 are suitable for any location including light industrial.
- Water Absorption Rating – The more resistant to water the tile is, the more it might cost. Tile rated Impervious absorbs less than .5% of tile weight when soaked in water. Next is Vitreous which absorbs between .5% and 3%. These tiles are suitable for bathroom flooring, kitchen flooring and in the laundry or entryways. Semi-vitreous tile absorbs 3% to 7% and is suitable for dry locations.
- Tile Thickness – Residential tile ranges from about 6mm to 10mm. Thickness has moderate impact on cost.
- Glazing – Plain tile costs the least, all else being equal. The more decorative or elaborate the finish, the higher the cost.
- Tile Size – Larger tiles install more quickly than small tiles, so labor estimates might be lower.
- Room – Porcelain tile is very hard and difficult to cut, so anywhere a lot of cutting is required, cost will be higher. For this reason, cramped spaces, like bathroom flooring, come with higher labor costs than large spaces like open kitchen flooring.
- Subfloor Prep – Repairing the subfloor, adding self-leveling concrete to low spots or sanding off old adhesive can as up to $3.00 per square foot to the job cost.
Cost of Installation Supplies
Tile size isn’t really a factor in a porcelain floor as it is in marble. This is because marble is natural stone and porcelain tiles are man-made. It’s just as easy to make 24”x24” tiles as 6”x6”, for example.
Browsing sites like Lowes and Home Depot, it’s easy to find tile for about $1.00 and more than $50 per square foot. When you add installation costs, it creates an even wider range of prices.
Still, most jobs fall between about $11.00 and $21.00 per square foot. Home Guides offers a slightly narrower porcelain tile cost estimate of $12 – $19.
- $1.00 – $3.00 per square foot | Tile with matte finish and lightly textured surface. Mostly single colors, 6mm or 7mm thick. PEI rating of 2 or 3, suitable for residential use. Most is vitreous or semi-vitreous. Various sizes.
- $3.25 – $6.50 per square foot | Tile with matte or semi-gloss finish in a wider range of colors – often blended or mottled coloration to look like stone. Some wood-look tile is in this cost range too. PEI rating of 3 or 4. Most is semi-vitreous. Various sizes.
- $6.75 – $12.00 per square foot | Semi-gloss and gloss porcelain tile with decorative glazing. PEI of 4 or 5. Impervious or semi-impervious in various sizes.
- $12.00 – $20.00 per square foot | Semi-gloss and gloss porcelain tile. Brightly colored glazing. PEI of 4 or 5. Impervious. Various sizes.
- More than $20.00 per square foot | Highly decorative designer tiles in bright colors. PEI of 4 or 5. Impervious. Some of the porcelain tiles in this range are accent tiles rather than tiles most homeowners would use to completely cover a floor.
Sample Porcelain Tile Floor Project Costs
Time and material costs are the two big factors in how tile jobs are priced. The floor layout and amount of tile cutting required relative the size of the space affects time. For example, Fixr suggests that the cost to install high-end porcelain tile in a complexly designed bathroom with a lot of cutting might exceed $80 per square foot. That’s rare, but it happens.
Here are a few project costs for comparison. Again, since you can find tile costing more than $50 per square foot, these project costs are for the most commonly chosen tile covering 90% of jobs.
Entryway: 50 square feet
- Entry-level tile ($1.00 – $4.00/sq.ft.): $450 – $800
- Midgrade tile ($4.25 – $7.50/sq.ft.): $615 – $975
- Premium tile ($8.00 – $15.00/sq.ft.): $825 – $1,350
- Range: $10.00 – $27.00 per square foot
Bathroom: 150 square feet
- Entry-level tile ($1.00 – $4.00/sq.ft.): $1,650 – $2,850
- Midgrade tile ($4.25 – $7.50/sq.ft.): $2,135 – $3,375
- Premium tile ($8.00 – $15.00/sq.ft.): $2,700 – $4,500
- Range: $11.00 – $30.00 per square foot
Kitchen: 300 square feet
- Entry-level tile ($1.00 – $4.00/sq.ft.): $2,700 – $4,800
- Midgrade tile ($4.25 – $7.50/sq.ft.): $3,700 – $5,850
- Premium tile ($8.00 – $15.00/sq.ft.): $4,900 – $7,800
- Range: $9.00 – $26.00 per square foot
Permits, Inspection, Related Costs and Installation Time
Permits and Inspection Cost
- $0 | No permit is needed for tile flooring installation – though in some states installers are required to be licensed.
Related Costs and Installation Time
Porcelain tile takes more time to install, so costs are higher than for ceramic tile.
- $8.00 – $14.00 per square foot | Installation labor cost to install marble tile flooring. Where the tile is installed affects cost.
An experienced installer will install 5-8 square feet of tile per hour. Average hourly rate is about $45.
Common time-frames are:
- About a Day | 50 square foot foyer
- 2-3 Days | 150 square foot bathroom
- 3-5 Days | 300 square foot kitchen
DIY or Hire a Pro?
Porcelain is tough tile to install. On top of the need to get the lines straight, use the right grout and mix it to the right color, cutting porcelain is difficult. Typically a wet saw is used to cool the blade and keep down the dust. You definitely don’t want to breathe the dust.
We said in our Marble Tile Floor Cost Estimate that, while there are risks of the job not looking professional, we’re pretty neutral about DIY marble tile installation.
Our recommendation on porcelain, due to the cutting challenges, is to hire a pro.