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How to Estimate Demolition Per Square Foot

Stanley Washington

Demolition is a procedure used to remove existing structures on property. Demolition may be necessary due to the age of the structure, the lack of habitability of the structure and its overall appearance. Some cities demolish structures to prevent unwanted vistas and drug trafficking.

Demolition costs can be minimal compared to the community's cost of a crack house.

Demolition in the home can be for remodeling, rebuilding or the selling of an empty lot. Demolition costs can be estimated by the number of square feet within a structure.

  1. Mesure the square footage of the structure you wish to demolish using a tape measure. Multiply the length and the width of the structure to arrive at its area, which is represented in units squared. For example, if your structure is 10 feet wide and 14 1/2 feet long, you will arrive at the sum of 145 feet. You will then have to pay for 145 square feet of demolition.

  2. View the structure and determine its number of floors and the building material it's made of. Additional floors will add cost to demolition, and various building materials will have different demolition costs per square foot.

  3. Determine the salvageability of the structure. Certain building materials like copper and windows can be sold to offset demolition costs.

  4. Prepare to pay landfill and hauling fees if you intend to have the debris taken to a landfill after demolition. Every landfill fee is different and may already be added into a demolition quote.

  5. Locate several demolition experts. Provide the structural information and ask for a quote from each demolition expert. Ask if they add hauling and landfill fees into their quote. An average cost of residential demolition was $6 to $15 per square foot, as of 2010.

  6. Choose the demolition expert best qualified for your demolition job.