What is Included in a Home Building Cost Estimate

I understand that when a quote of $103/sq. ft. (for example) is given, it doesn’t include the cost of land. But, does it include the costs of a well, septic, geothermal, etc.?

We have a budget of $300,000 for our new home.
When we deduct the amount we still owe on our land ($55,000), we have
$245,000 remaining with which to build.

Do we have to deduct the amounts for the well, septic, etc. before determining the amount we have to build the actual house? Or does that all get included into the cost per square foot?

I hope this makes sense.

Carl, I was looking at the two websites you suggested that have the Free Cost to Build Feature and was wondering was is included in the estimate. Are kitchen (cabinets and counter top), bathrooms and floors included?

Is this the estimate price for the bare walls? It is something to take into consideration when planning a budget because if those things are not included, well, you have to add quite a few dollars to that estimate.

Hi Marsha, Hi Danny,

Two questions, one answer.
These questions come up all the time and apprehension over what is and what is not included in a typical home building cost estimate is normal.

Here is an image of a cost to build estimate I did for a new house in Sacramento, CA using the free cost estimating software found on byoh.com.

Click on image for a larger view

As you can see, other than specialty items or upgrades (i.e., Geothermal Heat), the items mentioned by both of you are included.

You should keep in mind that the cost to build for this example, or any house plan, can vary considerably depending quality of materials selected, and on actual bids for labor and material.

The estimate for the Sacramento, CA house above is an approximate one based on “minimum standard” quality materials and a slab foundation.

Until you actually have home plans and go out and get actual bids, all you will be able to have is a rough estimate of the cost to build your home(s).
Good luck to both of you,
Carl Heldmann, 2016

Comments are closed.