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January 11, 2012

What is the Cost Per Square Foot to Remodel?

by Brad Squire

Remodeling and addition costs can be quickly calculated by utilizing many convenient methods. Among the quick estimates, homeowners will find that the most costly is likely the cost per square footage for remodeling projects. Cost per square foot is a method that is popular in use, but the method has limitations which you must be aware of, prior to depending on this specific type of quote.

The formula which is used for the cost per square foot is a simple calculation:

Times the cost per square foot by the square footage that will be remodeled

This seems relatively simple, correct? Basically, it is, provided that you consider that the cost per sq. ft. can vary which can make a drastic difference in the actual cost of the reconstruction. For example, the cost per sq. ft. can range anywhere from $100 to $700 which can make a difference of tens of thousands of dollars.

Obviously, the total cost of the construction of the remodeling can vary greatly. Variations are great and it will be necessary to consider the calculation. You might choose to estimate the cost of the project by a square footage by $100 to $300 per square foot. In reality, the average cost of remodeling per square foot is actually $300 to $500 per square footage. If your remodeling project is a custom remodeling, you can expect to double that cost. Now, you have a more accurate picture of the costs incurred in your project.
Cost per square foot will also be determined by other factors. One factor will be what part of the country you are in. Material costs are much greater in some areas than other and will vary from state to state. Determining the cost per square foot will be necessary before you use this calculation for an upscale, average or economy remodel in your location.

Another influence on the cost per sq. ft. will be the season in which you are remodeling. You will find that many subcontractors and contractors have periods of time when their business is much less active. During their slow season, most will charge less for their work.
Lastly, the per square footage cost will also depend on the degree of work involved with the remodel. Being involved in the following factors will help to lower the cost per sq. ft.

• Design
• Management of project
• Plumbing and electrical work
• Framing
• Demolition
• Project clean up
• Wallpapering and painting

With the various factors that can influence the cost per square foot calculations you realize that the simple calculation is relatively useless until these factors are measured in.

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