Engineered hardwood is made of real wood veneer (typically about 1/8th of an inch thick) backed by less expensive wood layers. It's durable, resists shrinking and expanding, and is moisture resistant, making it a good choice for finished basements. Cost: Engineered hardwood is less expensive than solid hardwood. Materials can cost $3-$18 per square foot, depending on thickness of the veneer, quality, and style of wood. A more skilled wood to install, a professional might charge $2-$6 per square foot for installation.