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Raising a house can be a big project with many surprising benefits. Whether you live in a flood zone and need your home elevated, want more space and cannot expand laterally, or need to move your existing home to a new location, lifting it safely off its current foundation is the first step.
Lifting a home has numerous variables involved that affect the final cost. How far the house is being lifted, the foundation type, and the reason for the lifting all impact your final cost. The national average for raising a home is between $27,000 and $75,000, with the average homeowner spending around $47,500 on raising a 1,500 sq.ft. wood frame home and building a new basement foundation beneath it. The low cost for this project is $21,000 for raising a 1,500 sq.ft. home and repairing the foundation below it. The project’s high cost is $112,500 for raising a home more than 10 feet, building a second story, and adding a new foundation below it.
|House Lifting Costs|
|National average cost||$47,500|
There are many reasons why you may need to raise your home. Your foundation may be unstable and needs replacing, or maybe you want to add onto your home, and raising your home is the best way to do this. In each case, the costs to actually raise the house do not vary tremendously. The costs are influenced by a few things - the square footage of your home’s footprint 1 and the work done after the raising. Costs have a range per square foot, which does not include your home’s height but rather the footprint. Square homes cost less than long, rambling homes to lift. In addition, your total costs will likely include the cost of the work in addition to the raising. For example, raising to repair a foundation costs less than raising to replace a foundation, even if all other factors are the same.
|Purpose||Average Costs for a 1,500 Sq.Ft. Home|
|Move a House||$18,000 - $21,000|
|Repair a Foundation||$20,000 - $23,000|
|Reinforce a Foundation||$24,000 - $30,000|
|Raise a House Above the Flood Zone||$25,000 - $35,000|
|Replace a Foundation||$30,000 - $70,000|
|Add a Basement||$30,000 - $70,000|
The cost to elevate a home to move it is between $18,000 and $21,000. This includes disconnecting utilities, jacking and stabilizing the home, and readying it for the move. It does not include transportation or the cost of a new foundation if one is necessary.
Smaller homes can be easily transported, while larger homes may need to be raised and transported in pieces. You will need to have a new foundation built at the new site. It is common to raise the home, load it onto the truck, move it to its new location, set it on temporary supports, and then build the foundation beneath it. This will raise the total costs of the project based on several factors, including how large the house is and how far you need to move it.
The cost of lifting a house to repair the foundation averages $20,000 to $23,000. Costs vary depending on the foundation type and level of repair. For example, slab foundations 2 usually cost less to repair than full basements. Your costs could be higher if the basement needs significant repair or must be replaced. Your costs can also be higher if your home has “wings” or other features. If your home needs to be temporarily moved to reach the foundation, your costs will also be higher.
The cost of lifting a house and reinforcing the foundation ranges from $24,000 to $30,000. As with repairs, costs vary depending on the foundation type and level of reinforcement. The more substantive the work, the higher the costs. If you need to move your home completely away temporarily to reach the foundation, the costs will be higher. If you have an oddly shaped home or are reinforcing in an earthquake zone, prices may also increase.
The average cost to raise above a flood zone is $25,000 to $35,000, depending on how high you need to lift it. If you live in a flood zone, your home is at risk for water infiltration. In most cases, start by visiting your municipality and finding out what your zone and Base Flood Elevation are or what the finished living level of your home should be above. Crawl spaces, supports, and other structures may be below this level, so you may find that you only need to raise your home a few feet to achieve the correct height.
If you have already experienced a flood, your home may need structural repair before the elevation can begin. In other cases, you may need work done after the elevation on the lower portion of your home. These factors are determined onsite by your contractor and impact your final costs.
The cost to lift a house and replace the foundation ranges from $30,000 to $70,000. Costs are mostly dependent on the current foundation type and what you replace it with. Slab foundations cost less than full basement foundations. If your home needs to be moved temporarily while the new foundation is poured, this impacts your final costs. The shape of your home can also play a big role in this project, with longer homes costing more than square homes. The depth of the foundation and your soil type also affect pricing.
The cost to lift a house and add a basement averages $30,000 to $70,000. Costs range greatly when adding a basement due to several factors. You may need to temporarily relocate your home. Your soil may require blasting to excavate for the basement. The basement depth and size also impact your total costs. In addition, the basement type you have affects costs because it will need removing.
The current home foundation and the one your home will have after raising is complete impacts the total project cost. For example, slab foundations are among the cheapest to build, while a full basement is more costly. In addition, the timber, framing, and the portion of the house that will be above the new foundation all impact the project cost. The higher the house is jacked, the more space you gain for building, so some foundations require more height. There are many types of foundations you can build beneath a home. The following costs are for the new foundation, in addition to the costs of raising the house.
Costs solely for raising start at around $12 to $14 a square foot for the footprint of your home and can go much higher - up to $70 a square foot - if your home needs relocating or has specific issues or needs. Added to these costs are the new foundation costs, which gives you the total cost to raise your home and build your new foundation.
|Foundation Type||Foundation Costs per Sq.Ft.||Total Costs per Sq.Ft.|
|Slab on Grade||$6 - $12||$18 - $26|
|Raised Slab||$8 - $14||$20 - $28|
|Stem Wall/Basement||$16 - $18||$30 - $60|
|Pier and Beam||$18 - $20||$30 - $60|
The average cost to raise a house and build a new slab foundation below is between $18 and $26 a square foot. This is the cost to lift the home, stabilize it, and pour the new foundation. Costs can be higher if the home needs to be moved temporarily for grading 3 or additional work. If you have an old concrete foundation that needs to be broken up first, this can further increase the costs. This is a common project in areas where homes were not built on foundations. If you need a foundation later, this is the easiest to add it.
The cost of raising a home and building a raised slab foundation below it ranges from $20 to $28 a square foot. This does not include any costs that may be necessary to remove an old foundation. If the house needs to be temporarily moved until the foundation is complete, this can have higher costs. This foundation is relatively new. It is used in areas where a slab on grade cannot be used due to flood water. This foundation lifts the house slightly, which can be enough to help reduce water damage.
The cost to raise a home to build a full basement beneath it averages $30 to $60 a square foot. Often to build a basement, the home needs to either be raised high enough for excavation, or it needs to be temporarily moved. Moving the home can increase your costs slightly. The depth of the basement and the height of the stem walls can also raise prices. Some people choose a more shallow excavation with higher stem walls to raise the home slightly, while still having a basement. However, this is not a good solution for those dealing with flood issues.
The cost to raise a house on a pier and beam foundation is between $30 and $60 a square foot. A pier and beam foundation can be used to create a crawl space. Depending on how high it is, this can also be done to get the main level of the house above a flood zone. The area below can be used for storage, and in some cases, it can even be used as a garage. Pier and beam can be done with either wood or steel pilings. Your total costs are dependent on how high you raise the home and how large a crawl space you create.
Your existing home size plays a large role in how difficult it is to raise your house and the total project costs. The taller a house is, meaning the more stories it has, the more difficult it becomes to keep the home stable when lifted. Therefore, more jacks, equipment, and contractors are required onsite to ensure that your existing home is not damaged during the lifting process. Single-story homes and smaller cottages are the easiest to jack. Ranches are very common to elevate because their single-story, slab foundations are easy to work with. Older homes, which tend to be heavier due to the materials used to build them, cost more to raise. Homes with porches, wings, and other unusual features are also more difficult and expensive to lift.
Costs for only the raising process, not moving or rebuilding a foundation, start at $10,000 for a house with a 1,000 sq.ft. footprint and increase, depending on which other services are involved. Many factors impact the cost, but both the size and weight of your existing home play the biggest role.
When calculating the cost of raising your home, consider the square footage not of your entire home but your home’s footprint. The smaller the footprint, the lower the costs. So, a 1,500 sq.ft. home that is square in shape will cost less than a 1,500 sq.ft. home that is long and sprawling with “wings.” Below are the average costs for lifting a home by its footprint size. These costs do not include any finishing or foundation work and are only for the costs related to raising the home. They include the preliminary work of unhooking the utilities and usually include the cost of the permit.
|Footprint Size||Average Costs to Raise|
|800 sq.ft.||$8,000 - $14,400|
|1,000 sq.ft.||$10,000 - $18,000|
|1,200 sq.ft.||$12,000 - $21,600|
|1,500 sq.ft.||$15,000 - $27,000|
|2,000 sq.ft.||$20,000 - $36,000|
The amount of elevation your home requires is determined by several things. A home being moved to a new location only needs to be elevated a few feet to get it onto the truck. A home having a new first floor built below the existing structure needs to be elevated 8 to 12 feet. Homes being elevated due to flood risk have varying amounts of required elevation. These amounts are determined by what is known as an Advisory Base Flood Elevation (BFE). This number is determined by the flood zone your home sits in and the ground elevation. If your BFE is 10 feet and your crawl space and first floor are at 5 feet, then you need to elevate your home another 5 feet to be out of the flood zone.
Keep in mind that for up to 8 feet of elevation, the costs are relatively the same for one structure. After that amount, costs climb because additional stabilization is required:
|Elevation Height||Cost per Sq.Ft. to Raise|
|1 - 8 ft.||$10 - $12|
|10 ft.||$12 - $16|
|12 ft.||$16 - $18|
There are many components to raising a home. The actual lifting of the home and lowering it costs about $5,000 on average. The rest of your costs are made up of various other things that must happen for this project to be completed successfully. These include:
When building another story below the original or lifting your home above the floodplain, you may have additional costs. Keep in mind that none of these costs involve interior finish work, removal or storage of belongings, or living expenses when you must vacate the home.
Much preparation needs to occur before raising a home, even though the crew can work around a lot of utilities and wiring. This includes disconnecting any utilities to the home and emptying the basement or crawl space.
Fully mark all the utilities in the yard to ensure they are not hit during the move. Some landscaping may be removed, such as large rocks or shrubs. Smaller landscaping may be trampled by the equipment.
The property is assessed by a structural engineer, who can best determine how to lift the structure. Sometimes, it will be disconnected from the foundation, but other times, it can be lifted with the slab foundation 2. In many cases, porches and decks can also be lifted, although they will need new stairs and foundations.
There are several methods for lifting a home. Most use some type of jack, which lifts the home very slowly over the course of hours. After this, the home is supported. This can be a few feet while the foundation is repaired or reinforced. Or, it can be several feet while a new foundation is put in or a new pier and beam crawl space is made for floodplains.
Once the foundation is ready, the home is lowered onto it, reattached, and supported. The utilities are reconnected, and you can begin any necessary interior finish work.
The cost to raise a house on pilings ranges from $10 to $60 a square foot. Pilings can be a temporary or permanent solution for the house during the raising process. Some homes are raised on pilings while the work is done, and then transferred onto their new foundations. Some homes are raised on pilings, which are finished like a crawl space foundation or pier and beam foundation. In this case, your costs will be much higher than if you merely use the pilings temporarily. For this reason, there is a wide range of costs associated with this project.
While the house is the most common area to raise, it is not necessarily the only area on your property that you need to raise. Garages, other attached buildings, and other additions and porches can sometimes settle on their own. Other times, you may have an older building like a garage that is lower than the rest of the home. In these cases, you may need to raise part of your property, without necessarily raising your entire home. These projects may have lower costs, often because they are smaller, have fewer utilities to disconnect, and are less complicated to raise.
|Raise a Porch||$1,000 - $3,000|
|Raise an Addition||$4,000 - $10,000|
|Raise a Garage to Replace a Foundation||$5,000 - $10,000|
|Raise a Garage Floor to Match the House Floor||$5,000 - $10,000|
The cost to raise a porch ranges from $1,000 to $3,000. Porches can often sag over time, which may cause them to begin to detach from the home. This makes them unstable and dangerous to use. Raising usually lifts the front of the porch so that it can be stabilized. The back of the porch is then reattached to the home and reinforced. Sometimes, a porch can also be raised along with the rest of the home. In this case, you will have additional costs to build a new set of stairs to its new height.
The cost to raise an addition averages $4,000 to $10,000. Additions often have their own foundation that is separate from the rest of the home. This means that sometimes their foundation needs separate work, or it may sink separately from the rest of the home. If this happens, the addition needs to be lifted to help prevent future damage. This process is usually minimally invasive, only lifting the structure slightly. Lifting it too high could cause issues with the rest of the building, so the addition will only be lifted enough to make the necessary repairs.
The cost to lift a garage and replace the foundation is between $5,000 and $10,000 on average. Most garages are on a slab foundation. This makes the cost of lifting and replacing less than if this were a structure with a pier and beam or stem wall foundation. In most cases for a slab foundation replacement, the structure only needs to be lifted a few feet. It can be stabilized in place, and the new foundation placed beneath it. Costs can be higher if the old foundation is particularly difficult to access to remove.
The cost to raise the garage floor to the level of the house ranges from $5,000 to $10,000. This assumes that the garage is less than a few feet below the house. If the garage needs to be lifted more than this, it will mean moving it offsite and extension grading work done first. If it only needs to be moved a few feet, then a raised foundation can be poured below it, lifting it to the necessary height. If the garage has only sunk or settled, costs can be even lower as concrete jacking may be able to lift it. If this is the case, costs can be as much as half of what is needed to lift the structure and raise the foundation.
During the lifting process, all your outdoor stairs and structures are removed. Then, the house is lifted to its new position. At this point, the previous stairs will no longer reach the new height of the doors, so entryways will need new access. This may be temporary until the process is finished, or you may want to construct permanent access immediately. This may mean installing new stairs or a ramp. If your home has a front porch, expect to add another $20,000 to the project.
Keep in mind that when adding a new basement or first floor, you also need to add stairs to the new lower part of your home, with staircases costing around $2,100.
Raising a house is not an easy project or one that you should undertake lightly. It must be done very carefully to avoid structural damage to the rest of the building and is usually only done when necessary.
You may want to raise a house if you live in a flood zone and have already experienced damage to flooding. Raising your home could prevent future flood damage.
If you love your home but not its existing location, raising your home enables you to move it to a new lot. By lifting it safely off its foundation, it is possible to load it onto a flatbed truck and move it to a new area.
Raising your home is also a consideration if you do not have a lot of space and cannot expand in the current location. By raising your home, your existing roof stays the same, which can save money over building a second story on top of your existing home. This keeps much of the existing character and style of the home intact as well, only giving you a new first floor.
Raising a house has drawbacks, however, which makes it less than desirable if you have other choices. Any movement of the structure can weaken it. You need to secure or remove all interior belongings to avoid damage, and even then, you may see shifting of the walls, cabinets, fixtures, or other items.
There are often more considerations when raising a home than many people see at first glance. This includes how to complete the new foundation, how to match the exterior of the old structure, and where your new entryway will be once the house is elevated.
It is common during home elevations to use this time to add square footage to the home. It is very common in some types of homes, such as a ranch, to raise the home and build the new addition below the existing structure. In this case, expect to pay about $200 a square foot for the additional area.
Before raising your home, it is a good idea to have it inspected for structural issues that may impact the elevation process. This includes checking the existing foundation for cracks, looking at the wall structure, and inspecting for any damage that raising may worsen. Expect to pay between $2,000 and $5,000 for the inspection.
Your landscaping will likely need to be removed or dug up during the process. Therefore, you need to include the costs of new landscaping in your project. Complete landscaping of a yard can cost as much as $10,000.
Sometimes, house lifting is done to help repair an existing foundation. In that case, expect to pay around $8,000 on average for general repairs, in addition to the lifting costs.
If you have major changes done, such as building a completely new story or new addition onto your home, you may want to hire an architect for the project’s planning stages. Expect to pay an additional 12% to 20% of your total budget for these services.
The costs to raise a house in a flood zone start at $12 to $20 a square foot but can go much higher, depending on the scope. If you have a completely new foundation built, this can increase costs to as much as $60 a square foot. Most projects cost between $25,000 and $35,000.
The raising process of lifting the house takes several hours, while rebuilding the foundation and the finish work take several weeks.
The average cost to raise a house and build beneath it is around $47,500.
Yes, you can either raise the house without the slab or raise it with a finished slab.
The average cost of lifting a house and building a foundation is around $47,500.
The average cost to raise a house and put it on pilings is around $25,000 to $35,000.
The cost to raise a house is roughly $10 to $12 a square foot. If you need foundation work or other work after raising it, your costs can increase to between $20 and $60 a square foot in total.