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How Much Does It Cost To Refinish Furniture?

Most homeowners spend between $371 to $629 nationally.
Get free estimates from local contractors who can Refinish Furniture.

With time and use, all things need a little touch-up or repair — and that includes furniture. Refinishing can bring new life to furniture, whether an end table or a four-poster bed. For treasured pieces, the cost of refinishing may be far less than the cost of replacement. Knowing what to expect in terms of labor and materials can help you decide whether to refinish or replace furniture.

If you’re looking for qualified refinishing professionals in your area, ImproveNet can help.

National Refinish Furniture Costs

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National

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$548

Average Cost

$60

Minimum Cost

$1,300

Maximum Cost
Average Range:

$371
to
$629

National Average Cost $548
Minimum Cost $60
Maximum Cost $1,300
Average Range $371 to $629
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How do we get this data? This info is based on 1445 cost profiles, as reported by ImproveNet members.

Table of Contents

  1. Furniture Refinishing Costs
  2. Types Of Furniture & Their Refinishing Prices
  3. Furniture Refinishing Vs. Repair
  4. Furniture Refinish Process
  5. DIY Or Hire A Pro?
  6. How To Refinish Furniture
  7. More Refinishing Projects
  8. Find A Pro

Furniture Refinishing Costs

Cost is a major consideration for any home improvement project. DIY costs for furniture refinishing are limited to the price of materials like a sander, sand paper, chemical strippers, stain and sealant. Professional wood refinishing costs for furniture depend on the type of furniture, size, condition and the quality of finish desired. Refinishing costs can range from $140 to $1,300 but homeowners typically pay from $325 to $850 for this kind of work.

Types Of Furniture & Their Refinishing Prices

While one customer may need to refinish dining room chairs, another might desire a new look for a china cabinet or armoire. Smaller items are less expensive to refinish than larger pieces, and the more detail the furniture has, the more expensive the job. The table below shows typical prices for refinishing various types of furniture. 

Type of Furniture

Refinishing Price Range

Bar Stool

$140 to $180

Basic Dining Chair

$180 to 240

Large Rocking Chair

$380 to $420

End Table

$280 to $520

Reading Desk

$380 to $580

Large Executive Desk

$780 to $1020

Large Dining Table

$650 to $900

Drop-Leaf Table

$480 to $580

Trestle Table

$580 to $720

Five-Drawer Dresser

$300 to $475

Eight-Drawer Dresser

$680 to $980

Coffee Table

$150 to $250

Large Buffet

$680 to $880

Large China Cabinet

$880 to $1080

Four-Poster Bed

$380 to $620

Types Of Furniture & Their Refinishing Prices

Furniture Refinishing Vs. Repair

The average cost for furniture repair falls between $100 and $250, but certain projects are more expensive. Some furniture may require re-gluing loose components or simple replacement of a leg, knob or handle, but if upholstery cleaning, re-upholstery or refinishing is required, the price rises. Homeowners can spend as much as $200 extra for upholstery cleaning, $1,500 extra for re-upholstering and $3,000 extra for refinishing.

Furniture Refinish Process

The advantage of hiring a professional to refinish furniture is in the details. To be thorough, professionals remove all hardware from dressers or cabinets, disassemble any backs or doors, re-glue any loose pieces and fill dents, chips or gouges in the wood's surface. On large surfaces like dresser tops and tabletops, the pros may use hand rubbing and/or air buffers to create a beautiful finish.

DIY Or Hire A Pro?

Furniture refinishing is a time-consuming project and one that requires a certain amount of knowledge and skill. While some homeowners may prefer to take on a DIY project, a treasured piece of furniture may demand the expertise of a professional. Hiring a professional always offers an attractive and guaranteed result.

Furniture Refinish Process

How To Refinish Furniture

Things to consider with a DIY refinishing project include whether furniture is upholstered, stained or painted, the quality of construction and whether the piece has loose parts. Paint might be covering up stains, missing veneer or other problems, and particle board or laminate pieces often don't merit refinishing. Pieces with loose parts or parts needing replacement often benefit from professional refinishing services. To complete DIY refinishing, follow these easy steps:

1. Remove Old Finish

Do this with chemical strippers or by sanding. Chemical strippers require rubber gloves, eye protection and good ventilation. Paste or gel products that boast "no cleanup" often work best. If using a chemical stripper, apply a thick coat and leave on as per the manufacturer's instructions. Use a putty knife to remove most of the finish and sand paper and steel wool for the rest. To sand away old finish, use an orbital sander and 80-grit or 100-grit sandpaper and a sanding block for cracks and crevices. Always sand with the wood grain. For protection of upholstery, avoid contact with chemical strippers.

2. Prepare Wood for the New Finish

Remove any remaining finish and smooth rough spots with 120-grit sandpaper. Apply wood filler to any cracks or holes, and remove excess with a scraper or putty knife. When wood filler is dry, use 220-grit paper and sand the entire piece. Apply a heavy coat of sanding sealant, and wipe off excess with a clean rag. When the sealant dries, sand lightly with the 200-grit paper.

How To Refinish Furniture

3. Apply the New Stain

Choices for stain include water-based stains and oil-based products. Follow the directions on the label for this step. For an easy and efficient method, dip a staining pad into the stain and apply it to the furniture using long, even strokes. Use a clean cloth to remove excess.

4. Finish With a Clear Coat

A clear coat spray adds a top layer of shine and protection. Apply one coat along the grain of the wood, and sand lightly with 220-grit paper when dry. Apply another coat to finish.

The video below offers a step-by-step guide with photos for expert furniture refinishing at home:

More Refinishing Projects

Refinishing isn't just limited to wood furniture. A variety of items that benefit from a shiny, new finish include:

Find A Pro

Beautiful furniture enhances the appearance of any room in the home. If you’re ready to breathe new life into a piece of furniture, ImproveNet can help. Use our free lead generator to connect with a professional in your area who can make your furniture shine to improve your overall household decor.

Get free estimates from local furniture contractors

Last updated on Jan 17, 2017

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