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How Much Does It Cost To Raise A House?

Typical Range: $3,005 - $9,193

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Reviewed & approved on December 2, 2020 by Cati O'Keefe, Expert Home Building & Sustainability Contributor.

Written by HomeAdvisor.

Average Cost to Lift a House

The typical cost range for raising a foundation is $3,005 and $9,193. The national average is $6,099. Less extensive projects could cost about $850, while more extensive ones could reach $14,000. This is just for raising the home. It doesn't include removal of the existing foundation and replacement with a new one. That entire process is priced between $25,000 and $100,000.

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National Average $6,099
Typical Range $3,005 - $9,193
Low End - High End $900 - $18,200

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Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 756 HomeAdvisor members in .
the average cost to lift a house is $6,100 or $900 to $18,000

Raising a foundation is an extreme form of repair in which a house is lifted, the old foundation is removed and a new one is built. This is done in situations where the house is intact, but the supporting structure has extreme damage. This is also the way historical buildings are moved to new locations. The house is lifted, a new foundation is built in a new location, and the house is placed on top of the new one. Other common reasons for homeowners to pursue this project are to lift it above the flood zone, to build a basement, or to keep it from setting in poor soil conditions. As you can imagine, this is a large and expensive job. It is difficult to anticipate the exact costs, but here are a number of factors that will have an effect.

Average Cost to Raise a House

There are many factors involved when calculating the cost of raising a house. Not only will you have to consider the typical prices for labor and excavation, but you will also have to adjust for size and condition of the structure being raised.

House Lifting Costs
Condition/Age of HouseVaries
Structural Engineer$100 - $200 per hour
Architect$125 - $250 per hour
Plumbing$45 - $200 per hour
Electrician$50 - $100 per hour
Excavation$40 - $150 per hour
Condition of FoundationVaries
Permits$1,200 - $2,000

Size of the Home

One of the largest cost factors is the size of your home. The larger it is, the more it weighs and the more complicated the process of raising it or transporting it will be. Most companies that do this kind of work will be able to give you a cost estimate based on the square footage of your home, but every price will be different based on other details such as the condition of the house and foundation. The best way to get an accurate quote for your particular project is to consult and hire a professional.

Cost Factors to Consider

Many homeowners are caught off-guard when their price is higher than they'd anticipated. There are many factors, aside from the size, which your contractors and inspectors will take into account. If your price is high, it is likely that they are taking extra precautions to secure your home's structure for the long-term.


The cost of labor is difficult to nail down. The best way to get an accurate figure is to get in touch with reputable foundation contractors in your area. You can, however, get a rough estimate of the cost of labor using a construction company's calculations. Construction companies often use a formula to figure out the actual cost of each employee, which involves administrative time, holidays, taxes, uniforms, and more. At the end of this calculation, the labor rate per employee tends to be nearly two times the wage. The cost could vary depending on the complexity of your project and the wage expected in your area.

  • Average hourly rate for a laborer: $16 per hour
  • Heavy equipment operator: $22 per hour

Condition/Age of House

Older homes are going to need extra care and reinforcement during the process. This is because of their age and the fact that older homes were built with heavier materials. This will take more equipment and time. You contractors may need to move the house at a slower pace if it is older and more vulnerable.

Plumbing and Electrical

Licensed electricians charge $50 to $100 per hour, while plumbers charge $45 to $200 per hour. These utilities will be disconnected, for the process, which requires expertise and time.


Excavation costs $1,450 to $5,000. The demands will vary from one house to another, and your cost could grow if special equipment and extra time is needed

Condition of Foundation

The average cost for foundation repairs is about $4,500. Repairs or accommodations that need to be made to stabilize the home can add significant cost.

Building Permits

Building permits will usually cost $1,200 to $2,000. The permit for this project can be sizeable, especially compared to the cost of a regular building permit.

Structural Engineer

Hiring a structural engineer will cost $800 to $3,000 on average. Having your home inspected for structural integrity before and after raising is extremely important and should not be skipped.


Architects charge $125 to $250 per hour. An architect may be the best investment you make for this project. They have the knowledge and experience to ensure that the money you spend doesn't go to waste. They can help you get the right permits, meet zoning requirements, and achieve the optimal design.


Expect insurance expenses, which should cover at least $100,000 to $200,000, to be factored into your cost. Talk to your insurance agent to make sure you are adequately covered. Make sure your foundation pro has adequate insurance as well.

"If you are moving your house from one site to another and you have a mortgage on it, you have an obligation to inform the bank holding your note as they have a financial stake in the property."Cati O'Keefe, Expert Home Building & Sustainability Contributor.

Cost to Jack Up & Replace a Foundation

Your cost to replace, due to structural failure or unmanageable repairs, will depend on the kind of foundation you choose. The range is anywhere from $20,000 to $100,000, on top of the initial cost of lifting. This includes such costs as excavation, grading, equipment fees, permits, and the cost of a structural engineer at $100 to $200 per hour.

The type of foundation you choose is of key importance, especially if you're experiencing failure. It is likely that rebuilding the same type will result in similar problems, down the road. Be sure to analyze the cause of your damage in order to select the best option going forward.

Cost to Replace a Foundation
TypePrice Range
Stem Wall$7,000 - $21,000
Pier & Beam$8,000 - $15,000
Crawl Space$8,000 - $21,000
Basement$10,000 - $175,000
Consult with a Foundation Specialist

Leveling a Settling Foundation Costs

Leveling is necessary when a house is losing structural integrity through sloping and sinking. A few signs that your home is settling are cracks in the walls, ceilings and floors, as well as doors and windows that either stick or won't close correctly. If you wait too long to level it, your repairs will only get more complicated and costly.

One of the most popular methods is to excavate around the house, lift it with hydraulic jacks and install piers, or underpinnings, where lift is needed. On average, piers will cost $1,000 to $3,000 each, and repairs tend to demand eight to 10 piers.

Soil or Ground Movement

Helical piers, specifically, are considered a great option for issues caused by ground or soil movement. These piers are embedded far below the surface into bedrock and used to secure the foundation, and they cost $1,400 to $2,100 each to install. A lot of settling issues are caused by poor soil or ground movement. If you are rebuilding in the same area where the old structure became damaged, then you must change the way it is built or the same damage will reoccur with the new one.

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Price to Lift Floor Above Flood Zone

Those who are in flood zones can greatly reduce their risk of flood damage by raising their home above the flood zone designated for their area. When properly raised, the lowest level of the home will be above potential water levels. Check the Risk MAP provided by FEMA to see if you are in a flood zone and if raising your home would lower your risk and your home insurance. Pilings and posts can form stilts to keep your home safe in flood conditions Options include:

  • Piers: Reinforced concrete or masonry blocks and footings. Can be installed over original, so will have a lower price point.
  • Posts/Columns: Drilled into holes and reinforced with concrete or concrete pads. Original must be removed, adding excavation costs.
  • Pilings: Driven deep into the ground with no concrete pads or footings. Original must be removed and house must be "set aside" during installation of pilings. Requires heavy-duty equipment. This is the most expensive option.
comparing a post foundation to a piling foundation

Building a Basement

The average cost to build a basement is $18 per square foot for an unfinished space. A basement can increase your property value while providing extra storage and even living space. If the lift cost alone runs around $5,000, you're looking at substantial added costs to install a basement underneath your existing home. Homeowners could spend anywhere from $10,000 to $175,000, depending on the size of the project, material choices, and whether they want the space finished. Still, the return on investment and the convenience a basement offers could make it worth doing.

Elevating Foundation to Transport House

Raising, repairing, and rebuilding the foundation, then replacing it is much less expensive than moving your home to a new location where a new foundation has been built. On average, homeowners spend $12 to $16 per square foot to move their entire house. However, other factors will come into play which could raise your overall service price. These include:

  • Distance to transport
  • Special permits
  • House dimensions
  • Difficulty of transport (road conditions, obstacles)

You will also need to hire a structural engineer to approve the stability of the home for transport. Then, on the other side of your move, you need to have a new foundation ready for placement. Building a new one costs $4,200 to $13,200 on average and can get significantly more expensive if you're considering a basement.

The cost of transporting a home is expensive and multi-faceted. However companies that specialize in moving homes will be able to give you an accurate bid based on the size of your house.

Landscape and Cleanup

Trees and landscaping can inhibit access for laborers. Therefore, you need to include the cost of removing then replanting or rebuilding your landscape when budgeting for the project. Contractors will need a lot of space for their equipment and for excavating around the work area. As such, you may wish to remove trees and landscaping in order to replant them afterward, or you may choose to scrap your landscaping and start anew after the lift. Removing a single tree can cost $700, while rebuilding landscape could cost $1,400 to $5,500.

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