How Much Does it Cost For Someone to Install Backsplash?

Installing a backsplash in your kitchen or bathroom can completely transform the look and feel of the space. However, backsplash installation does come at a cost. Here is an overview of the factors that influence backsplash installation costs, so you can budget appropriately for your project.


The material you choose for your backsplash will have a significant impact on the overall cost. Some popular backsplash materials and their typical price ranges include:

  • Ceramic tile: $5-$20 per sq. ft.
  • Glass tile: $15-$30 per sq. ft.
  • Stainless steel: $30-$60 per sq. ft.
  • Stone slab: $40-$100 per sq. ft.
  • Mosaic tile: $10-$30 per sq. ft.
  • Peel-and-stick tile: $2-$5 per sq. ft.

More exotic or high-end materials like marble, copper, or handmade tile can cost $100 per sq. ft. or more. The material cost alone for a 10 sq. ft. backsplash could range from $50 for peel-and-stick tile up to $1,000 or more for premium materials.


In addition to materials, you’ll need to factor in labor costs for installation. Rates for backsplash installation typically range from $40-$80 per hour, with an average of $50 per hour. The total time required will depend on:

  • The size of the backsplash area
  • Complexity of the design
  • The materials used
  • Whether there are special cutting or fitting requirements

As a rough estimate, a simple 10 sq. ft. tile backsplash may take 5-6 hours for a handyman to install. At $50 per hour, labor would cost $250-$300 for this size project. For a more complex backsplash with intricate designs, specialty tiles, or larger areas, labor could easily exceed $500 or more.

Other Costs

Other potential costs for a backsplash installation include:

  • Tile cutting: Custom tile shapes or intricate patterns will require skilled tile cutting, which adds $1-$5 per cut tile.
  • Additional materials: Grout, mortar, adhesive, sealant, trim pieces, and backerboard often add $100-$300 in materials.
  • Backsplash design: Hiring a designer to create a backsplash layout can cost $50-$100 per hour.
  • Permits: Some areas may require a permit for backsplash installation, typically $200-$500.

Total Backsplash Installation Cost

Putting together material, labor, and other costs, here are some typical price ranges for professional backsplash installation:

  • Small backsplash (5-10 sq.ft): $400-$800
  • Medium backsplash (10-25 sq.ft): $800-$1,500
  • Large backsplash (25-50 sq.ft): $1,500-$3,000

High-end designer backsplashes with premium materials can cost $5,000 and up. On the other end, DIY peel-and-stick backsplash installation could potentially cost under $100.

The key is choosing a backsplash design and materials that fit within your budget. Carefully measure your backsplash area and get quotes from installers before committing to a project. Often a few changes in tile type, accents, or layout can significantly reduce the price.

Factors That Affect Backsplash Installation Cost

Several key factors influence how much you’ll pay for backsplash installation:

Size of the Backsplash

Larger backsplash areas require more tile and longer installation time, increasing your costs. Measure your space carefully before getting quotes.

Tile Material

As outlined above, premium stone, metal, or glass tiles can be 5-10x more expensive than basic ceramic.

Tile Shape and Pattern

Mosaics, penny tiles, hexagons, and other special shapes often have added labor costs for intricate or fussy installation.

Contractor vs DIY Installation

Professional installers charge $40-$80 per hour, compared to DIY at your own pace. But DIY has risks of cracked tiles, uneven alignment, grout mistakes, etc if you don’t have experience.

Accessibility of the Area

Hard-to-reach areas over cabinets or around pipes and fixtures will take longer to install, adding labor costs.

Additional Materials Needed

From backerboard to sealant, extra materials can sometimes cost as much as the tile itself.

Tile Delivery/Availability

Ordering specialty or high-end tiles can mean long lead times and shipping costs. In-stock tiles are cheaper.

5 Tips for Reducing Your Backsplash Installation Costs

If your backsplash installation quote is above your budget, here are some ways to reduce the price:

  • Consider DIY: DIY installation can save 50% or more on labor costs if you’re handy. Watch online tutorials.
  • Use affordable tile: Swap natural stone for porcelain, or glass mosaics for ceramic. Prices can vary dramatically.
  • Simplify the design: Opt for solid-colored subway tiles or basic patterns rather than intricate mosaics or mixes of decorative tiles.
  • Install a small splash: A mini 4-6 inch backsplash strip can be very budget friendly but still add some style.
  • Focus accents: Use expensive tiles sparingly as accents against a backdrop of affordable tile to get the high-end look on a budget.

Backsplash Installation Cost: Key Takeaways

  • Expect to spend $400-$800 for a small DIY backsplash, up to $3,000 or more for a large professional installation with premium tile.
  • The main costs are materials (tile, backerboard, grout, etc) and labor (hours required). More intricate patterns, larger areas, and special tile shapes increase costs.
  • Carefully measure your space and get multiple installer quotes. Look for ways to simplify tile patterns or use less expensive tiles to reduce costs if needed.
  • A professionally installed backsplash can enhance the beauty and value of your kitchen or bath. Focus on quality materials and good design within your budget. With smart planning, you can get an elegant backsplash that won’t break the bank!

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost per square foot to install a backsplash?

The cost per square foot for backsplash installation typically ranges from $10-$50 or more. Simple ceramic tile can be as low as $10 per square foot including labor and materials. Stone, glass or mosaic backsplashes average $25-$50 per square foot. High-end materials like copper or marble can exceed $100 per square foot installed.

Is it cheaper to install your own backsplash?

In most cases, DIY backsplash installation is 50-75% cheaper than hiring a professional. However, it requires tiling experience and tools. Potential mistakes like cracked tiles or crooked layouts can end up costing more in the long run to fix if you have to hire a contractor afterwards.

What is the easiest backsplash to install?

Peel-and-stick backsplash tiles are the easiest for DIY installation. They have an adhesive backing so you can stick them right to the wall without any special tools. Subway tile backsplashes are also relatively easy for beginners to install compared to intricate patterns or natural stone.

Should you hire a contractor for a backsplash installation?

For complex backsplash designs, expensive tile, or large installs, hiring a professional contractor is usually worth the cost. They have the skills to perfectly cut tiles, create patterns, install tricky materials like natural stone, and get perfectly even grout lines. DIY is fine for simple small backsplashes if you have tiling experience.

Does backsplash installation require a permit?

Permit requirements vary by location. Small cosmetic backsplash installations usually don’t require permits. But if you’re doing a larger tile installation as part of a kitchen or bath remodel, building permits may be needed, especially if you’re moving or altering electrical, plumbing or gas lines. Check with your local building department to be sure.


Installing a backsplash is a great way to improve the appearance of your home and add value. With the right combination of materials, design, and DIY or professional installation, you can create a beautiful backsplash within almost any project budget. Measure your space, research options, get quotes, and look for potential cost savings like simpler patterns or smaller accents. With smart planning upfront and quality execution, you can control backsplash costs while still achieving the upscale finished look you want.