Construction

Cost to Renovate a House: Average Renovation Costs Per Square Foot

Learn the average renovation costs per square foot of a house. Discover factors that influence the cost of home renovations.
Togal AI
8 minutes

Cost to Renovate a House: Average Renovation Costs Per Square Foot

How much does it cost to renovate a house? What are the factors to consider when determining the estimate for your next home renovation project?

Estimating home renovation costs doesn’t need to be complicated or time-consuming, especially if you have the right information and tools to guide you. 

So if you’re a general contractor, estimator, or homeowner preparing a cost estimation for your next home renovation project, here’s what you’ll learn by the end of this blog.

  • Average Cost to Renovate a House Per Square Foot
  • Average Cost to Renovate a House Per Room
  • Factors That Impact the Cost to Renovate a House

Disclaimer: The pricing stated here is based on average data from third-party research. Prices may still vary due to differences in seasonality and supplier.

Average Renovation Costs Per Square Foot

On average, remodeling or renovating a house costs $15 - $60 per square foot. According to HomeGuide, completely remodeling a 3-bedroom house typically costs between $20,000 and $25,000.

However, it’s important to consider that building costs have increased due to labor and supply shortages during the COVID-19 pandemic. This year, prices have gone up to 10% with multiple parts of the country experiencing long delivery times. Thus, aside from factors like location and size, inflation is something that also needs to be considered.

Average House Renovation Costs 

The table below shows a summary of the standard range, low-end costs, high-end costs, and national average costs of renovation in the United States.

AVERAGE HOUSE RENOVATION COSTS
Standard Range $17,919 | $78,048
Low-End Cost
- Minor upgrades
- Uses low-end products
$3,200
High-End Costs
- Major renovations
- Uses designer materials and high-end products
$160,000
National Average $47,900

Source: How much does it cost to renovate a house by HomeAdvisor

Average Renovation Cost Per State in the U.S. 

Long Island and New York have the highest renovation costs, ranging from $25 to $150 per square foot. Jacksonville, Florida, on the other hand, has the most affordable renovation costs, ranging between $15 and $60 per square foot.

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per City 

The table below shows a summary of the average renovation costs in the United States. It includes the low-end and high-end cost per square foot in U.S. dollars. 

CITY, STATE LOW-END COST HIGH-END COSTS
Atlanta, GA $20/sq.ft. $100/sq.ft.
Bay Area, CA $25/sq.ft. $115/sq.ft.
Boston, MA $25/sq.ft. $115/sq.ft.
Chicago, IL $20/sq.ft. $100/sq.ft.
Denver, CO $20/sq.ft. $80/sq.ft.
Houston, TX $25/sq.ft. $115/sq.ft.
Jacksonville, FL $15/sq.ft. $60/sq.ft.
Long Island, NY $25/sq.ft. $150/sq.ft.
Los Angeles, CA $20/sq.ft. $95/sq.ft.
Nashville, TN $18/sq.ft. $70/sq.ft.
New York, NY $25/sq.ft. $150/sq.ft.
Philadelphia, PA $18/sq.ft. $85/sq.ft.
Phoenix, AZ $18/sq.ft. $90/sq.ft.
Seattle, WA $20/sq.ft. $95/sq.ft.

Source: Cost to remodel or renovate a house by HomeGuide.

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per City

The column chart below visually compares the differences in average renovation costs between the cities in the United States. The red columns display the high-end costs of the cities, and the blue columns display the low-end costs.

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per City

Source: Cost to remodel or renovate a house by HomeGuide.

How Much Should You Spend to Renovate a House?

According to the table below, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recommends spending a certain percentage of the home's value on the room or upgrade. Renovating a standard bedroom should only cost up to 3% of the home’s total value. Meanwhile, a kitchen should only cost up to 16% of the home’s total value.

 If you spend more, the value of the renovation will not proportionally add to the value of your home.

Suggested Spend Per Project Type

Project Type Suggested Spend (based on home value)
Standard Bedroom 1 – 3%
Roof 2 – 4%
Patio or backyard 2 – 5%
Windows 3 – 4%
Siding 3 – 5%
Small bathroom 5%
Primary bathroom 7%
Living area 10%
Primary bedroom 13%
Attic or basement 10 – 15%
Kitchen 16%

Source: Rocket Mortgage and was prepared by the National Association of Home Builders.

Renovation Costs By Home Type

Home type is another factor that impacts the rehab cost per square foot. Typically, homeowners spend  $15 - $60 per square foot on a whole house renovation. However, the type of house being remodeled can influence the final costs. For example, historical homes can cost up to $400 per square foot to renovate. It’s more expensive compared to an apartment that only costs between $25 - $60 per square foot. 

Historic homes are more costly to renovate because they must meet today’s safety standards. For example, their plumbing system must be updated to avoid issues with cracked pipes and tree roots. The building must also be inspected for pests like termites. Another reason for the high renovation costs of historic homes is that they may require materials or repair methods no longer in use.

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per Home Type

The stacked bar chart below visually compares the differences in average renovation costs between the different types of houses. The blue columns display the low-end costs and the red columns display the high-end costs of each home type. 

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per Home Type

Source: Cost to remodel or renovate a house by HomeGuide.

Renovation Costs Per Room  

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per Square Foot and Home Type

The stacked bar chart below visually compares the differences in costs between the different types of rooms or living spaces. The blue columns display the low-end costs and the red columns display the high-end costs for each room type. 

Average Cost to Renovate a House Per Square Foot and Home Type

Source: Various Sources

Attic 

Renovating an attic often includes adding insulation, installing a fan, and drywalling. Typically, it costs around $30 - $60 per square foot. But if the attic is being converted into a living space, such as a library or a kid's playroom, the cost can be up to $200 per square foot.

Basement 

Basement remodels can be anything from installing new flooring, adding electrical or plumbing, or building models. The average cost for this type of project is between $100 - $300 per square foot.

Bathroom 

Renovating your bathroom can cost between $120 - $275 per square foot, depending on the quality of materials being used. Bathroom renovations typically include updating the lighting fixtures, showers, countertops, bathtubs, and more.

Bedroom 

Remodeling a bedroom can cost between $15 to $40 per square foot, but it will vary depending on what needs to be done. For a low-end bedroom remodel, the cost can be around $4,000. Mid-range remodels typically cost around $20,000, while high-end remodels such as converting an attic into a bedroom can cost up to $40,000.

Garage 

DIY garage renovations typically include painting walls, putting up shelves, and recoating the floor. These standard renovations can cost between $2 - $5 per square foot. In contrast, major garage remodels that include hiring a general contractor, securing permits, and putting up walls may cost more than $86 per square foot. 

Gut Renovation

The average cost to gut and remodel a house ranges from $60 - $150 per square foot. This type of renovation includes structural improvements, new electrical and plumbing, and installing a new HVAC system.

Kitchen 

Depending on the size and quality of materials used, the average kitchen remodel can cost between $100 and $250 per square foot. Minor remodels which include very light touch-ups on backsplash, countertops, and light fixtures cost between $5,000 - $20,000. By contrast, a high-end kitchen remodel that includes custom tilework and cabinetry, upgraded plumbing, and redesigning the floor plan can cost between $60,000 and $125,000. 

Living Room 

Remodeling a living room ranges from $10 to $60 per square foot. Thus, when remodeling a 300-square-foot room, you can expect to pay between $3,000 and $18,000, or an average of $10,500. Living room remodels can include adding storage units, adding light fixtures, installing new windows, or refinishing walls.

Other Cost Factors That Affect the Average Renovation Costs Per Square Foot

Below are some of the other factors that impact home renovation costs. 

Labor 

The labor costs of renovating a house can cost between $20 - 200+ per hour, but it varies depending on the service and level of expertise of the construction specialist. Here are some of the typical labor rates per professional.

Construction
Professional
Rate
Architect fees $125–$250 per hour
Carpenter costs $35 – $100 per hour
Electrician rates $50–$100 per hour
General contractor fees 10%–20% of the total project
HVAC technician fees $50–$150 per hour
Interior designer fees $50–$200 per hour
Kitchen designer rates $65–$250 per hour
Landscape designer fees $50–$150 per hour
Painter rates $20–$50 per hour
Plumber rates $45–$200 per hour
Residential laborer fees $30 – $50 per hour

Source: Cost to renovate a house by HomeAdvisor and HomeGuide.

Permits 

Structural changes, electrical and plumbing work, along with other major renovations often need permits to ensure they’re done correctly under current building codes. Permits for small projects, such as kitchen or bathroom renovations, cost between $50 - $300. On the other hand, building permits can cost up to $1,800. It’s crucial to consult local county officials prior to home renovation projects for more accurate pricing and to determine which permits are needed.

Accelerate the Cost Estimation for Home Renovations With Technology

Before renovating a house, it’s important to first determine the costs and budget. Planning meticulously by considering various factors that impact the final costs can help prevent cost overruns and ensure that you're happy with the final result. Refer to updated prices based on factors like location, building size, labor costs, and materials.

Need help estimating the costs of a home renovation project? Leverage AI estimating software, Togal.AI, which can help automate and complete takeoffs in seconds with 99% accuracy. Experience Togal.AI by booking a demo here.

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