I'm looking at moving my interior walls around. We are planning to keep our existing floor and replace open spaces with the same floor. We will be refinishing the floors when the wall moving is done.

Is it easier to cut out the flooring where the wall is going to be and attach wall to subfloor (same with finished drywall ceiling) or can I just build the wall into the existing finished areas. So attach the wall through the hardwood flooring into the subfloor at the base and through the drywall ceiling into the joists above?

  • So I guess the answer is I can do whatever I want! I think I'll go with cutting out the floor since I plan to own this home for a very long time and feel like that is likely more "thorough". Thanks.
    – michael
    Feb 9, 2014 at 22:58
  • I don't think installing the wall on top of the wood is the worst thing in the world. However it can introduce problems and 30 mins of work now for knowing those problems won't come up is worth it. Also if you did decide to remove the wall - this wood would look different from what you have been walking on anyways and it would have tons of holes.
    – DMoore
    Feb 10, 2014 at 5:23

2 Answers 2


I would suggest that you mark where you bottom plate is, adjust circular saw to hardwood depth and cut it out (might need a jigsaw or dremel in corners).

Not exactly sure what type of wood flooring you have but I would do this in all cases. If your wood is floating you MUST do it.

If you have nail down I would still do it because you are introducing different amounts of pressure on the floor which could lead to buckling/damage over time. Keep the boards you cut out and they can be reinstalled. Also your drywall and baseboards will overlap the cutout points so you don't have to worry about how the hardwood will look after cut - you will have almost an inch to play with on each side.


You, or a future homeowner might want to remove those walls at some point, and wouldn't it be great if the hardwood flooring was still intact? I suggest building the walls and screwing the bottom plate in to the hardwood floor below. This is assuming they are not load-bearing.

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