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How Much Does it Cost to Raise a House?

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Article by City Lifestyle

Photography by Stock Images

House raising is the process of elevating a house or extending its foundation. In order to raise a home, the building needs to be separated from the foundation with the use of special equipment, including hydraulic jacks. It is a big and serious project with many surprising benefits. There are several elevation techniques available.

In general, they involve lifting a house and extending the existing or building a new foundation below it or leaving a home the way it is and either adding a new upper story or building an elevated floor within the house.

However, it is also a serious investment and you want to make sure that this investment is worthwhile. In some cases, home raising can help increase the value of your home, and sometimes it may be the only means by which it is possible to make structural repairs to the foundation. 

How Much Does it Cost to Raise a House?

On average, most homeowners spend between $3,700-$6,000 for raising their homes. Very involved projects can cost much more—up to $100,000.

On average, builders quote about $75 per square foot to raise a home. There are also certain factors affecting the cost of this process, including the following:

The size of the house

The size of the building has a significant impact on the cost of raising it. The bigger the house, the more equipment and manpower is required to raise it. 

The design of the house

If your home is compact, short, and square, it will be quite easy to lift it. In contrast, houses with funky designs and narrow additions may take more time and effort to be lifted. 

The number of floors 

It is more complicated and therefore more expensive to raise a home with two or more floors. Raising a multi-story home means that contractors will need to have more hands on deck, take more precautions, and use extra support to ensure that the process of lifting is safe. 

The condition of the home

The goal of any contractor is to lift a house safely, successfully, and with no damage. However, if your home is not in the best condition and is quite fragile, this may be quite complicated. 

The stability of the foundation

If the foundation is not stable, contractors may have to take additional steps to make sure that home raising is safe. If the foundation is seriously damaged, they may need to use an alternative way to lift your home. 

The time frame you expect it to be completed

It takes time to raise a house and to make sure that the job is done to the highest standards of quality and safety. If you want it to be done faster, then you should be ready to pay more. 

The permits that are needed to be obtained

It may be surprising to you, but getting permits is one of the most costly parts of house raising. In some cases, it may cost a few thousand dollars. 

Hidden costs

You may plan your budget for house raising, but as experience has shown, there are always hidden costs that you least expect. For example, contractors may discover that the foundation of your house is damaged. Or there may be water damage that has to be repaired before the process of home lifting. There are endless possibilities of hidden costs, meaning that you have to be prepared to cover them. 

How to Find the Best House Lifting Contractors 

Finding good contractors for lifting your home can be daunting, especially because it is a serious investment. Here is the list of things you should do in order to find trustworthy professionals for such a complicated project:

Research

When you decide to raise your home, you should know exactly what to expect. For this reason, it is recommended to do some research and get an understanding of how it is done. Then, when you hire a contractor, you will know exactly what the outcome will be. 

Make sure they have experience

Do not hesitate to ask contractors questions about their experience. Have they lifted houses before? Or will it be their first project?

You want to make sure you are hiring professionals with plenty of experience. In addition, you should also find out what kind of houses they have lifted before. Ask them about the location, house size, and design. You want to make sure that they have lifted houses similar to yours, especially if your home has a complicated design and multiple floors. 

Find out what equipment they use 

When contractors lift homes, they use hydraulic jacks and support to raise the foundation inch by inch until they reach the desired height. The quality of the equipment they use is extremely important. The equipment should be modern and meet the OSHA requirements. If not, then it is better to find someone else. 

Ask them for quotes and find out if there are any additional fees

Raising a home is expensive, so do not be afraid to ask contractors for quotes. It is recommended to compare the prices of several lifting companies and find the one that fits your budget. It is better, though, not to go with the cheapest one. 

Ask them about the timeline 

Many homeowners make one common mistake: they sign the contract with contractors first and then find out that they are booked up through several months from now.

Ask them if they are able to begin work on your project when you want them to. You should also ask them how long it will take them to complete the project. On average, it takes about a week, but if the project is complicated, you should be prepared for longer. 

Ask for referrals

It is one of the best ways to find a quality and reliable lifting company. You can always do a quick Google search to find honest reviews from previous customers, and you will have the whole picture of what exactly to expect from contractors you want to hire.

Here are the answers to the most common questions about the process of home raising:

Can I live in my house while it is being elevated?

The process of lifting a home involves disconnecting of all the utilities, including heat, water, and power. Therefore, it would be not only inconvenient but even dangerous for a homeowner to remain in a house that is being lifted. For this reason, homeowners should be prepared to stay in temporary housing until the project is completed. 

How long will it take to raise a home?

The process of home lifting takes about one week but may also take longer if the project is complicated. Contractors will be able to give you a time frame estimate once they see the house. 

Is there any chance that home lifting will cause damage to the house and the foundation?

In most cases, houses are not damaged at all. Sometimes, there may be a few cracks, even though it is quite rare in general. 

Do I need to move the furniture and personal items out of the house?

Most furniture and items can stay in the house. However, such fragile and valuable stuff as crystalware in cabinets should be removed and stored somewhere else. If you have any spa baths or water beds, you will have to drain them. 

You Get What You Pay For

The process of house raising is costly and complicated, but it is definitely worth it, especially if you are trying to prevent water damage, add square footage, or make some repairs to the foundation. Moreover, lifting your home will help you save money in the long run and add some value to your property.

All you need to do is to find professional and experienced contractors, who will be able to raise your home to the highest standards of safety and quality. 

Raising a House in Kansas City

If you are looking to take on the project of raising your house or another construction project, Owen Homes in North Kansas City is a wonderful choice.

When looking for a remodeling company to work with, a key factor to consider is the longevity of the company.

Owen Homes has been serving Kansas City for more than 15 years, so you can be confident that these are trusted people with a great understanding of the city, the area's weather, and any other variables that will make your project unique.

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