How You Can Calculate the Average Cost to Build a House

photography by Lisa Russman

So, you’ve decided to build a new house, huh? While your mind quickly fills with images of family time at the kitchen table, moments of peace in your new space, and making memories in the treasured moments, the reality is, you still have to think about the total cost of building a house if you want to make this dream come true. So while your visions for your new home may be significant, that doesn’t mean your budget is, so understanding what it will cost to build your house can help you realize your wish list without losing your marbles.

What Is the Average Cost to Build a House?
While it is essential to look at average building costs in your area when planning your new home construction project, these costs may mean little when compared with your actual building costs. Your situation may vary dramatically from others in your area, so be sure to keep that in mind. It is always possible to spend a lot more or a lot less than your local average on your new home construction.

Many factors will affect your home’s total construction costs. Everything from the lot you purchase as a building site, the type of foundation prep that is necessary, how large you want your home to be, and each of the materials you intend to include will influence your final price. Most new homes today can be constructed for anywhere between $100 and $175 per square foot. That’s quite a range! That’s because there is so much variability in what you can choose to include or eliminate in a custom home.

For most construction projects, the initial cost of building a home is higher than purchasing an existing home. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t advantages. A custom home means you can create a home with not only great natural light and plenty of bedrooms but also one with the best hide-and-go-seek spots in the neighborhood! Custom homes provide the finishing touches that turn a house into part of your story.

How Can I Calculate My Costs?
There are many excellent online tools, including house construction cost calculators, which will help you estimate the costs for building your home so that you can understand the budget you will need. A professional architect can then create and finalize detailed plans for how much your specific vision will cost to build. Moreover, like all the best-laid plans, unexpected expenses will come up, and you’ll want to leave room in your budget for unplanned costs.

Working with an architect who understands your vision for your new home, as well as your family’s needs now and in the future, can help ensure you design a home that is right for you as well as your budget. Architects who specialize in new home construction and renovation in a specific area will know the most about local labor costs, available materials vendors, average building costs in your area, and which contractors you can trust to stay on budget.

The right architect will also work within your budget to create a space that is functional, beautiful, and welcoming for all members of your family. Small budgets or smaller spaces don’t have to mean compromises. Work with an architect who appreciates the challenges that small areas create and who love solving problems with you.

The factors that influence the final building costs of your house are many and complicated. Working with a professional architect who understands your vision for a new home will enable you to create a budget for all your new home construction costs while providing you with your dream home.