How Much Does It Cost To Raise A House?

Typical Range:

$3,214 - $10,319

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 919 HomeAdvisor members. Embed this data

How We Get This Data

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  • Homeowners use HomeAdvisor to find pros for home projects.
  • When their projects are done, they fill out a short cost survey.
  • We compile the data and report costs back to you.

Updated June 15, 2022

Reviewed by Ezra Laniado, Expert Contributor.

Written by HomeAdvisor.

The typical cost range for raising a house is between $3,214 and $10,319. The national average is $6,732. Less extensive projects could cost about $900, while more extensive ones could reach $20,000. This price is just for raising the home. 

Raising a foundation is a form of repair that encompasses lifting a house, potentially removing the old foundation, and building a new foundation or adding to an existing one. This is also the way historical buildings are moved to new locations. The cost to lift a house and replace the foundation is between $25,000 and $100,000.

Average costs to lift a house is $6,500, ranging $900 to $20,000

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National Average $6,732
Typical Range $3,214 - $10,319
Low End - High End $900 - $21,000

Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 919 HomeAdvisor members.

Raising a House Cost Factors

There are many factors involved when calculating the cost of raising a house. Common reasons homeowners pursue this project are to lift it above the flood zone, build a basement, or keep it from setting in poor soil conditions. As you can imagine, this is a large and expensive job. You will have to consider the typical prices for labor and excavation, as well as adjust accordingly for the size and condition of the structure.

Factor Cost
Size Varies
Condition and Age of House Varies
Structural Engineer $100 – $200 per hour
Architect $125 – $250 per hour
Elevation Varies
Plumbing $45 – $200 per hour
Electrician $50 – $100 per hour
Excavation $40 – $150 per hour
Condition of Foundation Varies
Permits $1,200 – $2,000
New Stairs Varies
Labor Varies
Patch and Paint Varies
Insurance Varies

Size of the Home

One of the most significant 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 foundation contractor.

Labor

The cost of labor is difficult to nail down and can 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 and Age of House

Older homes are going to need extra care and reinforcement during the process. This is because of the structure's age and because they typically have heavier materials. This will take more equipment and time, and contractors may need to move the house at a slower pace if it is older and more vulnerable.

Elevation

A house may need to be raised a few inches (or up to 12 feet) from its foundation. The higher the home is raised, the more time and equipment the process will require. Costs range from $10 per square foot for 1 foot of elevation to as much as $35 per square foot for a 12-foot lift.  

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 and then reconnected upon completion, which requires expertise and time.

Patch and Paint

When the home is raised, inevitably, there will be some cracking in the drywall at the interior of the house and in the exterior finish as well, especially around doors and windows. “One should factor in additional cost of patching and paint,” said Ezra Laniado, Expert Contributor and Founder of Landmark Construction & Development Group. “This cost will vary depending on how much cracking occurs and if the paint color and sheen can be matched well enough.”

Excavation and Grading

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 are needed.

Condition of Foundation

The average cost for foundation repairs is about $4,800. Repairs or accommodations that need to be made to stabilize the home—in the event of cracking, leaking, or setting—can add significant costs.

Building Permits

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

New Stairs

Access to exterior doors will change if the house is moved or permanently raised. This may require building new stairs to reach the exterior doors. Costs for replacing concrete steps range from $900 to $5,000 for each of the home’s entryways.  

Structural Engineer

Hiring a structural engineer costs $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.

Architect

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 obtain the right permits, meet zoning requirements, and achieve the optimal design.

Insurance

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 ensure you are adequately covered. Request insurance verification from your foundation pro 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," says Cati O'Keefe, Expert Home Building & Sustainability Contributor.

Landscape and Cleanup

Trees and landscaping can inhibit access for laborers. Therefore, you need to include land-clearing or removal, as well as replanting or rebuilding your landscape costs, when budgeting for the project. Contractors require 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 the landscape could cost $1,400 to $5,500.

Additional Considerations

Other items that could affect the total cost to raise a house include the possible need to move, raise, or construct new utility feeds like water, gas, and electrical service connections. Grants may be available in some areas to relieve some of the cost burden on homeowners in known flood areas or disaster relief areas.

Cost by Need

There are several reasons to raise a house. Different scenarios require tools and equipment that can achieve varying results. For example, raising a home to replace the foundation requires the house to be raised but not moved, while transporting a home requires both raising and moving the structure. 

Cost to Jack Up and Replace a Foundation

Your cost to replace a foundation, due to structural failure or unmanageable repairs, will depend on the kind of foundation you choose. The cost to add a foundation ranges 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 foundation you choose is of key importance, especially if you're experiencing failure. Rebuilding the same type will likely result in similar problems down the road. Get an expert analysis of the cause of your damage in order to select the best option going forward.

Type Price Range
Stem Wall $7,000 – $21,000
Pier & Beam $8,000 – $15,000
Crawl Space $8,000 – $21,000
Basement $10,000 – $175,000

Cost to Level a Settling Foundation

Leveling is necessary when a house is losing structural integrity through sloping and sinking. Signs that your home is settling include: 

  • Cracks in the walls, ceilings and floors

  • 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.

Soil or Ground Movement

Helical piers, specifically, address many 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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Cost to Lift 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. These options include:

  • Piers: Reinforced concrete or masonry blocks and footings; these can be installed over the original, so they’ll have a lower price point.

  • Posts or Columns: Drilled into holes and reinforced with concrete or concrete pads;  the original must be removed, increasing excavation costs.

  • Pilings: Driven deep into the ground with no concrete pads or footings; originals must be removed and the house must be "set aside" during the installation of pilings. Pilings require heavy-duty equipment and are the most expensive option.

comparing a post foundation to a piling foundation

Piering and Underpinning

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

Mudjacking

Homes built on a concrete slab that is settling and becoming unlevel may have a less intrusive option than replacing the foundation. Mudjacking a house is a method of injecting concrete or foam under high pressure under a slab to bring it to level. Leveling a house using mudjacking or foamjacking typically costs from $6.70 to $16.70 per square foot

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 worthwhile.

Building a Second Story

The average cost to build a second story starts at around $500 per square foot. The total cost you’ll pay can depend on many factors, including the type of materials you choose, your location, and the foundation work required.

All in all, a partial addition to your second story can run you around $80,000 to $250,000, while adding a full second-story can run from $100,000 to $600,000 or more. 

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 that 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 houses will be able to give you an accurate bid based on the size of your home.

Cost by Type of Foundation

If you're raising your house to install a new foundation other than a full basement, the type of foundation you choose will affect the project's overall cost. The estimated costs listed below are in addition to the cost of simply raising the house.

4 types of foundation compared by cost for house-raising, including crawlspace, slab

Slab

Installing a slab foundation under a raised house will add between $4 and $14 per square foot to the overall cost of the project.

Stem Wall

A stem wall directly attaches the home's exterior walls to a deeper footing. Installing a stem wall on top of a foundation footing adds between $5 and $16 per square foot to the project’s cost. 

Crawl Space

Creating a crawl space under the house is another example of stem wall construction to attach the home’s walls to the foundation footing. Adding a crawl space adds $7 to $10 per square foot to the cost of raising the house. 

Pier and Beam

Pier and beam foundations allow the home to rest on a series of deep concrete piers for support. Adding a pier and beam foundation costs $9 to $12 per square foot in addition to the cost of raising the house. 

Other Common Raising Projects

When raising your house, you may encounter other structures that you’ll need to raise as well. Here are a few common raising projects that often coincide with a home raising project.

Porch

Raising a porch that’s attached to the house is often necessary to maintain the overall roof structure of the home and to keep the structures aligned. In many cases, the porch rests on piers or a limited foundation that is separate from the home's costs to raise a porch along with the home range from $1,000 to $3,000

Addition

Additions are usually considered an integral part of the home. However, the foundation of the addition may be completely separate from the rest of the home. To raise an addition could cost between $4,000 and $10,000, depending on size and foundation type.

Garage

Raising an attached garage is usually necessary when you’re raising a house. The roof, floor level, and possibly the foundation will necessitate that the garage is raised with the house—to raise a garage in conjunction with the home costs between $5,000 and $10,000.

FAQs

Does raising a house add value?

Yes, in some cases raising a home can increase its value to potential buyers. However, in cases where flooding can occur, raising a home may only maintain the home’s value rather than increase the value. With this process, you can prevent damage from flooding, increase storage possibilities, and allow for more living spaces, all of which can add value. 

How long does it take to lift a house?

Depending on the work required, raising a home usually takes a few weeks, usually up to about two months. This timeframe includes the entire process, from prep work to any work you’ll do once the house is lifted.

Does FEMA pay to raise a house?

If you live in an area with a high risk of flooding, state officials may be able to apply for flood mitigation grants through FEMA that would partially pay for you to raise your home. FEMA provides the funds, but these programs are usually tackled at the state and local levels. Contact local officials if you live in a flood-prone area and are interested in learning more.

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