Is It Worth Demolishing a House and Rebuilding?
In many parts of the United States, demolishing and rebuilding a house is the more cost-effective solution compared to extending, renovating, or bolting another story into an existing house.
Still, some homeowners are hesitant whether this move makes better sense financially and take the home improvement route to great effect.
If you have not yet decided whether to demolish and rebuild a house or renovate it, this ultimate guide will help you understand the demolish and rebuild process and cost to help you make a wiser and more informed decision.
Why Demolish and Rebuild?
Houses have their own life span.
These houses were designed and constructed for a very different generation, with a completely different understanding of lifestyle, comfort, and energy efficiency.
Some old houses were built with no central heating system and little or no insulation, having much smaller rooms, without the comforts and flexibility that a modern lifestyle needs.
Hence, if you are living in a house that was built between the post-war austerity era from the late 1940s and the decade that architecture forgot in the 1970s, it is the most probable candidate for a demolish-and-rebuild house project.
Here are more specific factors to consider for a demolish-and- rebuild on your house :
1. Faulty foundation or other structural issues that are beyond repair
Do you see cracks or buckling in the foundation of your house? Do you feel that the strength of the ceilings and walls of your house has deteriorated?
If you notice severe problems in the structural support system of your house or extensive moisture and mold damage in several areas, complete demolition and rebuild are recommended.
Remember that we are talking about extensive damage.
If you notice that only one section of the house has structural problems, then you can consider a renovation.
2. Height, Width, and Length Restrictions
When you want to change the current layout of your house but the local government or housing agency has restrictions on adding rooms or making improvements to an existing house, you may want to demolish and rebuild instead of renovating.
Just make sure that you are aware of the existing structure placement restrictions for your area because you may have less space to rebuild than you expect.
3. No More Space For Home Additions
If there is no more space in your area to add new nooks or rooms, you will have to demolish and rebuild your house to accommodate more rooms or house addition structures that you are planning.
You will have to consider though if this is more cost-effective or not.
If you are content with your present house design, you can simply make adjustments to the walls, attic, and other structures.
4. More Renovations Required
Your budget is a major factor to consider when demolishing and rebuilding a house.
If after a thorough assessment of your house and your contractor recommended more renovations that will cost you more money than demolishing and rebuilding it, you might as well demolish and build a new house.
5. An Old House That Is Not a Historically Significant Building
Every house does not live forever. If you want a house that will serve you for decades to come, you wouldn’t like to deal with issues living in an old house that has reached the end of its life.
Unless your house is a historically significant building, you may want to knock it down and start afresh.
6. Outdated Materials, Layout, and Design
If you’re not happy with the current layout and design of your house and you have budgeted for more modern materials, you can go ahead and demolish and rebuild your house.
It’s important that you live in a house that makes you feel comfortable, happy, and at home.
If you are considering selling your property in the future and your present house has significantly depreciated in its value, take this opportunity to demolish the structure.
If you have no budget constraints, you can build a new house that you can sell with greater value in the future so that you will get a good return on your investment.
According to Chicago-area tear-down real estate specialist Brian Hickey, a tear-down should be able to support a new house that, when completed, is valued two to three times the price of the tear-down house at acquisition.
In short, the most critical elements to consider when choosing between demolishing and rebuilding or extending and renovating your house are:
- Age, condition, and structural quality
- Plot location and size
- Design freedom
- Time and logistics
- Your desires
The Demolish-and-Rebuild Process
If your agenda includes both demolition and construction of a new house, it is best to combine your application for demolition and rebuilding as one project.
It will be easier for planning and building regulations.
The length of time that it will take to demolish and rebuild a house will depend on several factors that can affect the duration of the project.
It is important that you are aware of potential problems that could arise and set back construction.
A knockdown and rebuild project can vary depending on how long it takes to obtain necessary council demolition and building permits.
Once you have approvals and your existing home has been demolished, complete construction of an average house can take approximately 26 weeks from the time the concrete slab has been mixed.
These steps will be accomplished in the demolishing and rebuilding process:
- Determine which demolition method is right for you
- Find the right demolition contractor for the job
- Have your house inspected by a professional
- Choose a home design
- Contract signing
- Get the necessary permits for demolition and a rebuild project
- Disconnect existing services
- Ensure that the area is safe for others
- Arrange for salvage
- Tear down the house
- Remove all the debris
- Prepare for rebuilding
- Rebuilding proper or site start
Will a Demolish and Rebuild Work?
As with any kind of project, you will need to do your homework if the financial and structural viability of demolishing and rebuilding your house is worth it.
Choose a trusted demolishing and building company that can advise you on demolishing and new builds, and all elements of home building and design.
This will ensure that you will get the home that you really want and need.
More from Big Easy Demolition
Big Easy Demolition is a licensed and insured company providing demolition services for both home and business.
We proudly serve the areas of Metairie, Slidell, New Orleans, Kenner, Laplace, and all throughout the Greater New Orleans area.