How Much To Tile a Backsplash

Tiling your kitchen backsplash can greatly improve the look and feel of your kitchen. However, before starting this project, it is important to understand how much it will cost to tile a backsplash. With proper planning and preparation, you can tile your backsplash beautifully while staying within your budget.

Factors That Influence Backsplash Tiling Costs

Several key factors determine how much you will spend on tiling your backsplash:

Size of the Backsplash

The size of the area you want to tile is the biggest cost factor. Measure the space to get the square footage. This will determine how many tiles and the amount of grout and adhesive you need. Larger backsplash areas will require more tiles and supplies, increasing overall project costs.

Type of Tile

Tile prices range from $2-$50 or more per square foot based on the material. Ceramic and porcelain tiles tend to be cheaper. Natural stone tiles like granite, marble or travertine are more expensive. Tile size, texture, color variations also impact price. Smaller tiles take more time to install. Consider the look you want and make sure to budget for the tile type.

Labor Costs

While DIY installation can save money, professional tiling provides expertise. Tiling contractors charge $40-$80 per hour or more. Be sure to get an itemized estimate and verify credentials and experience. Many factors like tile layout affect installation time and cost.

Other Supplies

In addition to tile, you need backerboard, thinset mortar, grout and tools. Quality materials and specialty grout/adhesive for glass or stone tiles add expenses too. Allow about 15% of total tile cost for supplies.

Backsplash Design

The backsplash layout affects cost. Busy patterns with small tiles or special shapes take more time and supplies than installing larger uniform tiles. Accent tiles, borders, niches or shelves also increase tile cuts and labor. Simpler tile layouts make the job easier and more affordable.

Estimating Your Backsplash Tiling Costs

Now that you know the key factors, here is how to estimate your backsplash tiling costs:

  1. Measure – Calculate the square footage of the backsplash area. Measure height x width. For irregular spaces, divide into sections.
  2. Choose Tile Type – Research material costs per square foot and availability. Get tile samples if needed.
  3. Tile Layout – Decide on tile size, pattern and design. More intricate patterns cost more in labor and supplies.
  4. Labor Estimate – Get quotes from at least 3 tile installers. Compare rates and experience.
  5. Material Costs – Calculate approx. number of tiles needed. Budget 15% of tile cost for other supplies.
  6. Total Project Cost – Add up tile, labor and materials estimates. Pad budget by 10-15% for contingencies.

Follow these steps and you can determine a realistic budget for tiling your backsplash. Be sure to leave a cushion for incidental expenses.

Tips to Save Money on Your Backsplash

If your budget is tight, here are great ways to save on your backsplash tile project:

  • Do it yourself! DIY installation cuts labor costs significantly.
  • Choose smaller sized tiles which require fewer grout lines.
  • Use mosaic sheets or tile strips to reduce installation time.
  • Select affordable tile material like ceramic instead of natural stone.
  • Reuse existing countertops and save the cost of replacement.
  • Stick to simple tile layouts like brick, herringbone or stacked patterns.
  • Buy tile when sales run at home improvement stores or online.
  • Shop discount warehouses for low-cost quality tile.
  • Use backsplash edge trim instead of bullnose tiles.

With smart planning and these money-saving tips, you can create a stunning, budget-friendly backsplash in your kitchen!

How Much Does It Cost to Tile a Backsplash Professionally?

Hiring a professional tile installer is a great option if you want your backsplash perfectly done but lack the DIY skills or time. Tile installation experts typically charge per hour or square foot.

Hourly Rate

Tile professionals may charge $40-$80+ per hour based on experience and demand. An experienced installer can tile faster than an amateur. Get an estimate of total hours needed for the job.

Per Square Foot Rate

Some tilers quote pricing by the square foot. Average costs range $4-$15 per sq. ft. This may vary based on tile type, layout complexity and your location. Get all-inclusive written estimates from contractors.

Average Professional Costs

Here are ballpark costs, although prices depend on specific factors:

  • Ceramic or porcelain tile installation: $4-$8 per sq.ft
  • Natural stone tile installation: $8-$15 per sq.ft
  • Labor only for tile prep & installation: $40-$80 per hour
  • Tile removal: $2-$5 per sq.ft

To get accurate pricing, get at least three professional estimates for your specific backsplash size and tile selections. Many tilers offer free estimates. Be sure to verify credentials, reviews, warranties and get everything in writing first.

DIY Backsplash Tiling Cost Breakdown

If you plan on installing the backsplash tile yourself, here is a breakdown of typical costs:

Tile: $200-$1000

Thinset mortar: $30-$60

Grout: $30-$60

Tiling tools: $50-$150

Backerboard: $50-$150

Trim pieces: $20-$75

Total: Approximately $400-$1500 or more depending on tile and size of the backsplash.

These are estimated costs for a medium sized 10-15 sq.ft. backsplash using mid-range tile. High-end tile, larger areas or complex patterns could cost considerably more.

Carefully calculate how much tile you need and create a detailed budget including all tools and materials prior to starting a DIY backsplash install. Remember – mistakes and delays can drive up your total costs.

FAQs About Backsplash Installation Costs

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about backsplash tiling costs:

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

On average, it costs $5-$15 per square foot to install backsplash tile. DIY can be under $5 per square foot while natural stone tile professionally installed is $15+ per square foot.

What is cheaper – subcontracting labor only or hiring a general contractor?

Typically subcontracting just the tile installation labor is 20-30% cheaper than using a general contractor who manages the entire project.

Should I get 3 quotes from different tile installers?

Yes, always get at least 3 quotes from tilers. Costs can vary greatly. Make sure to verify references and reviews first.

Can I install backsplash tile over existing tile?

Yes, tile can be installed over existing backsplash tile if the old tile is properly prepared. This saves costs of removing old tile. Consult a professional to do it properly.

How do I calculate the tile and required supplies for a backsplash?

Measure backsplash dimensions and multiply L x W to get square footage. Add 10% extra for tile cuts. Check tile packaging for coverage per box. Allow for 1 lb. thinset and grout for every 1 sq. ft. tiled.

The Bottom Line

Budgeting approximately $5-$15 per square foot for installation and tile costs allows you to plan a beautiful, functional backsplash that enhances your kitchen. Carefully consider tile choices, layouts and hiring a pro vs. DIY to make sure your project stays on-budget. With proper planning upfront through getting detailed estimates, you can tile an amazing backsplash affordably.