What Is the Labor Cost of Laying Ceramic Tile?

Updated November 21, 2016

Ceramic tile costs more than linoleum and carpet. It adds character, however, to a home and provides pattern options unavailable with other types of flooring. Since the materials themselves cost a pretty penny, you should determine the cost of labour and decide if it is worth hiring a professional or if it is better to do the job yourself.

Per Job

Some contractors charge a “per job" fee to lay ceramic tile. Typically people needing tile in a small room pay this type of fee. In 2010, small bathrooms and bedrooms requiring standard-size tile and very little or no cutting cost between £195 to £520, according to the website House Flipping Helper. Small rooms with intricate tile patterns, however, cost several thousands of dollars.

Per Square Foot

Some contractors, especially those tackling large jobs, charge per square foot of tile. In 2010, the average job costs about £2.90 to £4.80, states the House Flipping Helper. The higher end represents ceramic tile patterns with intricate designs and cutting angles.

Minimum Charge

Some contractors, especially those charging per square foot of tile, implement a minimum charge. This prevents them from getting paid very little to lay ceramic tile in a small space. For example, someone charging £2.90 per square foot in a 30-square-foot space would only get £87 charging merely per square foot. Instead, he might implement a £162 or £195 minimum per job.


The labour cost for laying ceramic tile usually does not include materials. It does, however, include removing the existing floor, or smoothing out the existing floor if necessary. It also includes cutting, laying, gluing and spreading of mortar, according to Cost Helper. Since the contractor usually breaks a few tiles during the cutting stage, it is best to have 20 per cent extra.


Since labour cost for laying ceramic tile doesn’t include materials, most homeowners buy their tile in advance and should figure it into their budget. In 2010, glazed ceramic tiles range widely in price from 60p to £13 per square foot. Unglazed tiles, however, average about £1.30 per square foot, according to Cost Helper.

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