How Much Does It Cost To Build A House? Some people want to build their dream home from the ground up. When you’re at the helm of your home, you’re in control of the property and its features. Whether you want cutting-edge energy-efficiency or hot design trends, it’s all in your hands. Plus, you avoid the cutthroat competition in the real estate market.
But for anyone who planned to build their home since they were a kid, you may need to check your expense estimates. The COVID-19 pandemic caused the average cost to build a house to increase compared to previous years.
So, you may want to review the typical costs waiting for you as a home builder in 2022, including buying land, obtaining permits, designing the property and building it, and the necessary materials.
Cost To Build A House
Factors like labor and supply shortages led to increased building costs over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, the overall cost for home builders in the upcoming 2022 year may still be higher than previous years. However, it’s likely we won’t see drastic price drops or rises compared to the height of the pandemic.
The pricing for the following sections comes from data collected over the previous year. However, they should help you plan for any upcoming construction. Still, always discuss pricing with professionals before you start budgeting.
Average Cost To Build A House
|National Average To Build A Home||$284,001|
|Minimum Average Costs||$80,000|
|Maximum Average Costs||$1,000,000|
|Average Range||$119,767 – $451,058|
Average Cost Per Square Foot
New home constructions typically cost $100 – $200 per square foot to build. However, the average cost to build a new home shifts upward of $500 per square foot for more luxurious accommodations, like a walk-in closet or energy-efficient features.
Building a bigger home also results in higher costs due to additional building materials and labor costs.
But there is no hard and fast rule. Price calculations vary depending on which spaces get included in the measurement (like the attic, exterior, basement, etc.), features, the land, neighborhood, building materials, design and more.
Average Cost Per Number of Bedrooms
|1 Bedroom House||$80,000 – $400,000|
|2 Bedroom House||$100,000 – $480,000|
|3 Bedroom House||$150,000 – $800,000|
|4 Bedroom House||$200,000 – $1,000,000|
Average Cost Based On Location
Location is one of the major drivers of cost when building a house. It impacts everything from construction costs to labor costs. That’s because price depends on the relationship between supply and demand. Some states have a higher demand than others, making it more costly to build there.
Here are the average expense ranges per state:
|State||Average Cost Range|
|Alabama||$200,000 – $380,000|
|Arizona||$200,000 – $625,000|
|California||$200,600 – $600,000|
|Colorado||$300,000 – $500,000|
|Connecticut||$300,000 – $800,000|
|Florida||$240,000 – $350,000|
|Georgia||$100,000 – $400,000|
|Illinois||$200,000 – $750,000|
|Maryland||$200,000 – $380,000|
|Massachusetts||$250,000 – $600,000|
|Michigan||$225,000 – $265,000|
|Mississippi||$180,000 – $300,000|
|Missouri||$310,000 – $485,000|
|New York||$250,000 – $950,000|
|North Carolina||$320,000 – $450,000|
|Ohio||$290,000 – $345,000|
|Oregon||$175,000 – $400,000|
|Pennsylvania||$345,000 – $450,000|
|South Carolina||$300,000 – $400,000|
|Tennessee||$185,000 – $380,000|
|Texas||$235,000 – $660,000|
|Virginia||$200,000 – $560,000|
|Washington||$200,000 – $450,000|
|Wisconsin||$220,000 – $400,000|
Breaking Down The New Construction Work Costs
Before tackling any project, you should examine what it entails. That includes both the work involved and the prices. With that in mind, here are some of the most crucial steps when building a house and their average costs.
Plot Of Land
If you want to start your home on the right foot, you need to choose the land it stands on carefully. You can’t decide based on looks or good views alone, though. A plot of land may seem nice but could contain contaminants in the soil, come with high zoning costs or be prone to natural disasters.
As a result, it’s vital to do your due diligence and check all factors. Failing to do so can add thousands to your building expenses. In general, a plot of land may cost $3,000 – $150,000.
Lots tend to be finished in urban areas, meaning they hook into water lines, sewers and the electric grid. Comparatively, you’re more likely to find unfinished lots in rural areas, resulting in lower costs. The average per-acre cost of raw land in a rural area is only $3,380, according to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Aditionally, you will need to clear and prepare the land before building. The national average cost is around $2,680 per acre of lightly forested land, but heavily forested areas can cost twice as much or more.
Building Permits And Regulations
Once you purchase your plot of land, your contractors and subcontractors can start preparing. They’ll need to contact your local municipal office to receive the necessary permits. Sometimes a contractor already has a relationship with your municipality, speeding up the process.
Building permits are official documents that authorize you to begin constructing the property. The requirements, building codes and associated fees vary depending on where you want to build, though. So, it’s wise to check beforehand. During the construction process, a representative from the local Department of Building and Zoning will inspect the project to ensure it’s up to code.
Some of the permits you may need, and their average price range, include:
- Building permit: $432 – $2,211
- Basement permit: $1,200 – $2,000
- Electrical permit: $10 – $500
- HVAC permit: $250 – $400
- Plumbing permit: $50 – $500
Contractor(s) And Labor Costs
A crucial figure in your project is the general contractor. This individual oversees the entire construction process of your home from beginning to end. They take on many responsibilities, such as obtaining cost estimates, vetting and hiring a team of subcontractors and ensuring deadlines are met.
A general contractor is technically different from a custom home building. The latter specializes in custom homes and draws up blueprints – two features the general contractor does not share.
A general contractor charges around 10% – 20% of the construction’s total cost, sometimes called “cost plus.” Some will agree to an hourly rate of $50 – $150 per hour, though.
After that, you need subcontractors. Each one specializes in a certain type of installation or task, such as security system installation or carpeting. They charge a similar hourly rate to general contractors.
Breaking ground is the next step once you finish all the prep work. At this time, a crew comes in to dig out the space needed for the foundation of your home.
The foundation isn’t the same for every home, though. The company will pour concrete depending on the style you choose, including slab, crawl space and basement. The slab is generally the cheapest and basement is usually the most expensive. Crawl space tends to sit in the middle, cost-wise. The size will also influence how much you end up spending.
Your preferences and budget will determine which one you choose. However, each one has its advantages and disadvantages. The cost for a foundation averages $4 – $25 per square foot. The typical project costs around $8,450.
Here’s a cost breakdown by type based on averages:
- Concrete slab foundation: $5,200 – $13,000
- Monolithic: $5,200 – $13,000
- Stem wall: $7,000 – $21,000
- Pier and beam foundation: $8,000 – $15,000
- Pile foundation: Minimum of $28,000
- Basement foundation: $30,000 – $70,000
The frame acts as the bones of your home for you to build around. It supports all the finished features, including your windows, roof, doors, walls, and even garage (if you want one). The overall cost includes both the labor and materials.
So, you will need to factor in how long it will take to complete this part, along with the amount of materials needed. As a result, a bigger or more complex home will likely cost more.
Usually, you can depend on the framing to cost $20,000 – $50,000.
Once you finish the basic components of the interior fixtures and drywall, you start on the exterior. That involves installing features such as doors, roofing, walls and windows. This may also be the step where the builders work on walkways, driveways, and patios. But some crews prefer to wait until the very end to pour the driveway.
Exterior work helps complete the look of your property and generally costs $40,000 – $60,000. Multiple openings and your chosen finish affect this price, though.
HVAC And Other Major Systems
Electrical, HVAC and plumbing account for most of your system costs. That’s because installing these systems is usually labor-intensive. But you can’t skimp in this area since these major systems are critical to the health and safety of the home’s occupants. They also impact the efficiency of your property, meaning cutting corners will cost you in the long run.
Installation costs around $30,000 – $75,000 overall, but the type and size of the systems may change that.
You can estimate interior finishes to cost $50,000 – $175,000, but only based on averages. Interior home finishing can run much higher than that because personal preference decides them.
You don’t make decisions in this area based on utility. Instead, you want your dream home to accurately reflect your style and unique tastes. As a result, any special touches or customizations will result in higher costs. However, you may be able to reduce some of them if you DIY any features.
Home Building Material Costs
The cost of building materials soared throughout the COVID crisis. Disruptions to the supply chains resulted in decreased supplies of raw materials. However, demand remained robust at the same time, making it difficult to catch up.
As a result, the current costs of materials appear much higher than in recent years. That, in turn, can impact your bottom line while building a new home.
Considering that, here are some of the latest building material averages to know.
Lumber is the backbone of many projects when it comes to building a home. Builders use a variety of types, from cedar to spruce to pine. But builders usually refer to the different forms as engineered wood, hardwood and softwood.
Hardwood offers greater strength and durability, making it good for furniture, flooring, walls and ceilings. In comparison, windows, framing, and interior moldings typically call for softwood. Engineered wood is versatile, serving as the material for flooring, siding and subflooring in many newer homes.
As of October 2021, lumber prices rose to $592 per thousand board feet, according to Statista.
Building materials experienced price hikes throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Lumber, in particular, skyrocketed – adding $35,872 to the cost of your average new single-family house, according to data from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). So, potential homeowners should watch because high prices may linger well into 2022.
Concrete is a common building material thanks to its variety of advantages. To start, it is less vulnerable than wood to certain external threats, such as mold, moisture and fire. In addition, concrete is durable and helps increase energy efficiency in a building due to its ability to retain heat. So, you can save on cooling and heating when you use it.
Expect to pay approximately $4 – $8 per square foot for the material on its own. This will vary based on the thickness of the concrete, thickness of the edge and the finish.
If you want to use the concrete to build the home itself, you’re looking at a $210,000 –$416,000 project (for 2,000 square feet). The type of wall you choose (retaining, block or stamped) will also impact the total expense.
Many homeowners in the U.S. install asphalt shingles on their property. They are an affordable option that is versatile and easy to find, costing around $1.50 – $5.50 per square foot. But they’re not the only roofing option out there.
Metal roofing comes in sheets or shingles, is low-maintenance, and can last decades longer. In comparison, it costs $6 – $14 per square foot, depending on its material and design.
Alternatively, there is wood roofing. You often see this on Cape Cod cottages or Tudor-style homes. Although, they last the longest in areas with dry climates. The popular cedar shake-style roofing averages $5 – $7 per square foot.
Overall, for the average roof size of 17 squares, roofing materials generally range from $2,500 – $25,000. Keep in mind that a quote for most projects covers both product and labor costs.
Siding is crucial to protect your home from the elements, like snow, rain and wind. It also plays a role in insulating your home and prevents damage to the foundation from risks such as water and pests. It can even help with your home’s energy efficiency.
On the other hand, poorly installed or cheap siding makes your house vulnerable to harm. So, it’s important to choose a durable product.
Siding typically costs around $12 per square foot. However, this depends on the type of material. Here are some of the most popular siding options and their average cost per square foot (based on a single-family home):
- Aluminum: $2 – $5
- Brick: $9 – $28
- Engineered wood: $4 – $9
- Fiber cement: $5 – $13.50
- Steel: $4 – $8
- Stone: $35 -– $50
- Stucco: $5 – $6
- Vinyl: $3 – $12
- Wood: $2 – $5
Drywall, sometimes called wallboard or plasterboard, is made up of gypsum sandwiched by two paperboards. There are different types of drywall, each with its own benefits. The four basic categories outside of the standard version include: fire resistant, mold resistant, moisture resistant and soundproof.
You use this material to create the walls and ceilings of your home. And it’s pretty much replaced wall plaster in new home constructions, partly due to its ease of installation.
Drywall costs around $15 per 4-foot-by-8-foot panel. Thicker panels plus soundproofing can cost as much as $60. So, in the end, you pay 40 – 65 cents per square foot.
Flooring not only impacts the appeal of your home but its market value as well. It’s the basis for every room’s design. In addition, it also affects the functionality of your home, making it harder or easier to enjoy the space.
Both the labor and materials heavily factor into the cost of flooring. You can plan to pay around $3 – $22 in general per square foot. However, you may pay more or less depending on the material. A price breakdown per square foot looks something like this:
- Carpet: $3.50 – $11
- Ceramic or porcelain tile: $15 – $20
- Hardwood: $6 – $22
- Laminate: $3 – $10
- Linoleum or vinyl: $3 – $7
- Natural stone: $6 – $20
The Bottom Line: What To Consider When Building A House
Predicting the costs associated with home building is a large undertaking. There are multiple moving pieces to plan for, including contractors, materials and designs. But once you outline the responsibilities, you can start putting together a budget.
You may need to consider ways to finance building your own home. A construction loan may help you cover the costs to fund your dream home from the ground up. Your approval depends on a detailed plan, creditworthiness, cost estimates and more, though. So, research your project thoroughly before approaching any lenders.
Are you ready to buy your new house?…Let us help you!
Ana speaks 3 languages (Portuguese, English, Spanish), Wife, Stepmom, Journalist, Event Director for the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP) Central MA Chapter.