Inexpensive Home Building

Cut through the jargon and nonsense of home building and house construction by starting from zero dollars and trying to figure best-value bang-for-your-buck when choosing construction methods or construction materials. My research might answer some of your questions and at other times perhaps you have the knowledge or experience to post the answers to my questions and thereby help others too. The goal is an affordable and sustainable home for all.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Building Costs Estimates

Livable space (finished, heated) costs $100 per square foot as a ballpark entry-level (fancy materials naturally add cost).

A concrete foundation costs $2.75 per square foot plus $11.50 per linear foot of footings (on the perimeter).

Star Group provides this useful list of typical costs:
(for California but they seem like a decent guide for throughout the United States)

Install new forced-air furnace $2,500 to $5,000.
Remove ducts with asbestos $1,200 to $2,400.
Install new flexible ducting $2,500 to $3,500.
Install new wall furnace $1,000 to $2,500.
Install new floor furnace $1,500 to $2,500.
Replace vent piping $600 to $1,200.
Service furnace $250 to $500.
Encapsulate asbestos ducting $1,000 to $2,000.
Add central A.C. system $2,500 to $3,500.
Replace condenser pump $400 to $700.
Replace A.C. compressor $1,400 to $1,700.
Service A.C. system $250 to $450.

Replace galvanized piping with copper $1,700 to $3,000 per floor.
Install new waste piping to street $3,500 to $7,000.
Reset toilet (excluding floor damage) $200 to $300.
Install new toilet $350 to $450.
Replace water heater $600 to $1,200.
Install pressure / temperature valve $100 to $150.
Elevate water heater on platform $200 to $350.
Install sump pump $800 to $1,600.
Replace shower pan $1,000 to $1,500.
Replace tile shower $2,200 to $3,200.
Replace faucet $150 to $250.
Install gas line $40 to $50 per ft.

Painting $500 to $800 per room.
Remove acoustic ceiling with asbestos $7 to $12 per sq. ft.
Install masonry fireplace $7,000 to $12,000.
Rebuild masonry fire box $600 to $1,000.
Install prefabricated fireplace $3,500 to $6,000.
Major bathroom remodel $6,000 to $12,000.
Major kitchen remodel $15,000 to $60,000.
Install battery smoke detector $50 to $75 each.
Install direct wired smoke detector $175 to $275 each.

Refinish hardwood floors $3 to $4 per sq. ft.
Refinish softwood floors $9 to $11 per sq. ft.
Buff and apply finish only $1 to $1.50 per sq. ft.

(Average room is 250 to 350 sq. ft., costs do not include removing and replacing furniture)


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