What’s The Average Cost to Tear Down a Garage? | Upgraded Home (2023)

What’s The Average Cost to Tear Down a Garage? | Upgraded Home (1)

Whether your garage is run-down, too pricey to repair, or you want to remove it and build a new one, demolition may be the best route to go. Tearing down a garage is considered a partial demolition, which may be necessary for homeowners who are carrying out a major home remodel. While garages are still highly sought after among homebuyers and can actually increase the value of your property, there are plenty of instances when your home may be better off without the eyesore of a dilapidated garage.

In this case, knowing the cost to tear down a garage can help you plan and budget accordingly. There are a number of factors that impact the cost to demolish a garage and the final price will depend on the garage’s size, materials, complexity, location, foundation, whether or not it is attached or detached, and more. Generally speaking, the cost of garage demolition is categorized based on square footage.

The average cost to tear down a garage is $2,500, but it can cost an extra $1,100 to remove large concrete slabs. Homeowners have to spend another $3,250 if the garage contains hazardous materials like asbestos and mold. It costs another $64 per square foot if you plan to rebuild another garage in its place.

Continue reading for our comprehensive guide on the cost to tear down a garage, which will give you a more balanced understanding of how to budget appropriately for this major undertaking.

Overview of Garage Demolition Costs

In simplest terms, the cost to tear down a garage is determined based on the square footage of the garage. However, the price can vary considerably depending on a number of factors. These include the materials used to build the garage, whether it’s a detached or attached garage, and much more. The following table displays a brief overview of the average costs to demolish a garage.

Average Cost$2,500
Average Range$2,000 to $9,000
Low End Cost$1,500
High End Cost$22,500

Cost to Demolish a Garage by Square Foot

In the United States, tearing down a garage costs an average of $4 to $8 per square foot for detached garages and $5 to $15 per square foot for attached garages. This has to do with the fact that attached garages are much harder to remove since you have to avoid causing damage to the rest of your home.

To put things into perspective, most two-car garages are between 400 and 600 square feet. However, there are several factors that can affect the overall cost of this project. Regardless, the table below outlines average demolitions cost ranges based on garage square footage:

Garage SizeAverage Cost Range to Demolish Detached GarageAverage Cost Range to Demolish Attached Garage
500 square feet$2,000 to $4,000$2,500 to $7,500
750 square feet$3,000 to $6,000$3,750 to $11,250
1,000 square feet$4,000 to $8,000$5,000 to $15,000
1,500 square feet$6,000 to $12,000$7,500 to $22,500

Factors that Influence Garage Demolition Cost

Like all demolition jobs, and home improvement projects in general, the cost to tear down a garage is influenced by a number of factors:

1. Attached vs. Detached

Put simply, an attached garage refers to a garage that is connected to your home and features a door that allows you to access the inside of your garage via your house (and vice versa). A detached garage, as the name suggests, is not attached to your house and is instead a standalone structure that is next to your house or located somewhere else on your property.

In terms of cost, attached garages are more expensive to tear down than detached garages. This has to do with the fact that there is much more that goes into the overall project, from the preparation to the physical demolition and the repair of the remaining structure. When it comes to demolishing a detached garage, there’s nothing connected to it so you don’t have any additional structures to worry about and there’s less planning and labor involved in general.

2. Material

The material that the garage was constructed out of also has a huge impact on the cost to tear it down, as it will contribute to how easy or difficult it is to demolish. In most cases, brick garages are usually the most expensive type to tear down due to sheer weight alone. Whereas, wood frame garages tend to be the most affordable to demolish.

Not to mention, if some of the materials are reusable or recyclable, you might be able to recoup some of the money you put into the project. Materials like cement, cinder blocks, and wood that is in decent shape are all valuable. Salvaging materials may increase project costs if your contractor is handling the work. However, you could elect to do some, or all, of the salvaging by yourself and save money that way.

3. Foundation

The cost to tear down a garage may increase depending on the foundation it has. More specifically, if the garage sits on a concrete slab that also has to be demolished, you can expect the costs to rise substantially. Depending on the thickness and size of the slab, you could pay an additional $700 to $1,500, on top of the costs to tear down the garage.

4. Complexity

In addition to whether or not the garage is anchored to a concrete slab, most garages have electrical and plumbing considerations. This wiring will have to be disconnected, and possibly moved, which adds to the complexity of the project and raises the overall price.

Generally speaking, the worse condition that the garage is in, the easier and cheaper it will be to remove. A garage that’s in good condition, is anchored, and has wiring, will cost much more to tear down than an old, dilapidated garage.

5. Location

Your physical location also plays a role in the cost to tear down a garage. As you might expect, it’ll be more expensive to remove a garage in higher-income areas or major cities than in a low-income area or rural town. This has to do with the fact that major cities have higher labor costs and disposal fees. Not to mention, if your specific municipality requires that you have a permit, you’ll have to pay a fee to obtain one (more on this below).

In addition to the city that your garage is located in, the garage’s accessibility and where it’s positioned on your property can impact pricing, as well. The closer the garage is to other structures or landscaping obstacles, the more challenging it will be to tear down – thus the more expensive it will be to demolish.

6. Hazardous Materials

If your garage contains any hazardous materials, such as lead paint or asbestos, you’ll have to pay to have it removed before you can proceed with the demolition. Depending on the size of your garage and the amount of lead paint or asbestos it has, you could pay anywhere from $1,500 to $5,000 to have it removed. Again, this is in addition to the cost to tear down the structure.

Do I Need a Permit for Garage Demolition?

In most cases, a local permit (and the corresponding fee) is required for demolition projects of all types – including the teardown of a garage. In major cities, permits are necessary whenever any structure is built, altered, or demolished. Though, there are some areas in the United States that do not require a permit when tearing down a small, detached structure – such as New York City and Seattle.

However, you should always check with your local Building Department to ensure that you have all the required permits. Requirements and fees will vary from city to city, and you’ll want to factor this into the overall cost of demolition. If you hire a contractor, they’ll usually handle the permit process for you, but make sure you discuss this with them first. If they refuse to get the proper permits, this is a red flag and usually a strong indication that the contractor is not appropriately licensed to carry out the project.

Debris Removal

With garage demolitions, you’ll inevitably end up with quite a bit of debris to deal with after the project is complete. There may be laws regarding the number of materials you have to recycle, depending on your city or state ordinances. For materials that you cannot recycle, you’ll likely have to rent a dumpster to manage the debris.

In most cases, your contractor will handle the rental of the dumpster and include it in the overall cost of the demolition. However, make sure you discuss this with them upfront. If you plan to handle the demolition yourself, you’ll want to factor the cost of dumpster rental into the total cost to tear down the garage.

DIY Garage Demolition vs. Hiring a Professional

If you’re looking to tear down a small, detached garage and you’re up for the task, you likely could handle the job yourself. However, the question becomes whether or not you should do it yourself. The answer to this question is, more often than not, a hard no. Tearing down an entire structure is always more difficult than meets the eye.

Doing it improperly can lead to serious injury and possible damage to nearby property, which may end up costing you more in the long run if you need to have someone come in and fix your mistakes. Not to mention, in order to do the job successfully and safely, you’re going to need quite a bit of tools on-hand. These tools can be pretty expensive to gather if you don’t already have them in your repertoire.

For any sort of demolition, you should always consider consulting with the help of a professional. Depending on where you live, there may be some restrictions regarding who you can and cannot hiring for the job. For example, some places have a list of approved or permitted contractors to choose from. So, make sure you always check with the building department in your area.

Related Questions

How long does it take to tear down a garage?

Depending on the size and construction of the garage that is being torn down, the process could take anywhere from 1 to 2 days.

How much does it cost to tear down and rebuild a garage?

If your goal is to tear down a garage with the intention of rebuilding it, this will typically cost you between $44 and $85 a square foot. Though, this price will depend on whether the garage is attached or detached.

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Jessica Stone

Jessica considers herself a home improvement and design enthusiast. She grew up surrounded by constant home improvement projects and owes most of what she knows to helping her dad renovate her childhood home. Being a Los Angeles resident, Jessica spends a lot of her time looking for her next DIY project and sharing her love for home design.

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How do you calculate demolition cost? ›

To develop a competitive demolition estimate, remember the following formula: Cost Estimate = (V x ROP x COP) + DC – SC. In this formula: DC = Direct Cost; SC = Salvage Credit; V = Volume of Material to be Demolished and Removed from the Project; COP = Cost of Production.

How do you calculate demolition of a house? ›

The demolition cost of a building is usually tied to its square footage. The national average for commercial demolition is usually pegged at $4 to $8 per square foot, so you can get a rough idea of the costs associated with demolition by multiplying the square footage by a dollar amount in that range.

How do you tear down an old garage? ›

Garage Demolition Steps
  1. Pull appropriate building permits for your project.
  2. Shut off all water, electric, and gas to the house.
  3. Remove trim work (ie: baseboards, window and door trim)
  4. Tear down unneeded existing drywall. ...
  5. Remove the garage door(s)
  6. Pull out any windows that need to be repositioned or closed off.

How much does it cost to convert garage to master suite? ›

A garage conversion can cost anything between $3,000 to $30,000 depending on the range of upgrades. If the goal of the remodeling is to make a garage into a fully-furnished master suite, the cost is likely to be on the higher end.

What should a demolition plan include? ›

The demolition plan of any site should label the nearby structures and their respective metric dimensions. It should not have a single omission. Moreover, information about nearby buildings and structures should include their finish grade elevation and top-level foundation.

Can I demolish my house without permission? ›

You must apply for full planning permission to demolish a building or structure if any of these applies: the building is in a conservation area and it has a volume of more than 115m³ the structure is in a conservation area and is more than 1m high and next to a highway or public open space.

How long does it take to tear down a house? ›

The main benefit of demolishing a building is that the process is quick and simple. While deconstructing a home can take upwards of two weeks, demolitions can be done in around 2-5 days.

Is it cheaper to demolish and rebuild? ›

Rebuilding. Let's say you're deciding between tearing down and rebuilding versus remodeling the interior of your home to fit your needs. According to The Spruce, an average rebuild costs twenty percent more than remodeling an existing structure.

Do you need permission to demolish a garage? ›

Although demolishing a building doesn't need building regulations approval, you need to send us a notice of demolition if the building is roughly bigger than a double garage. This is required law under the Building Act 1984 (Section 80).

Do you need consent to demolish a garage? ›

Moving or demolishing a building from an existing site

This means that if you want to remove or demolish a building, a building consent is not required. However, if you want to relocate that building to another site, a building consent will be required for the relocation of the building to the new site.

Does removing a garage devalue your house? ›

Does removing a garage devalue your house? Yes and no. If you replace your garage with an additional bedroom, that should enhance the value; anything else might reduce the value. Remember, off-road parking is attractive to many people and may even help to reduce your car insurance premiums.

Do I need permission to convert my garage into a room? ›

Planning permission is not usually required, providing the work is internal and does not involve enlarging the building. If your intention is to convert a garage into a separate house (regardless of who will occupy it), then planning permission may be required no matter what work is involved.

How much does it cost to insulate and drywall a garage? ›

Drywall Installation

The average cost to insulate and drywall garage space for two cars is between $1,680 and $10,200. Drywall isn't required in a garage (except for walls between the garage and living area of a home), but it does offer some nice benefits. One benefit is that drywall is highly resistant to fire.

What is the cheapest way to convert a garage to a living space? ›

Typically, the cheapest type of garage conversion will just involve blocking up the garage doors and finishing out the walls, floors, and ceiling with insulation, drywall, carpet, or other flooring material. Think of a bonus room, family room, playroom, game room, or man cave.

What are the steps before demolition? ›

Demolition Stages
  • Stage 1: Safety measures.
  • Stage 2: Preparatory Dismantling.
  • Stage 3: Supply and installation of explosives.
  • Stage 4: Explosion.
  • Stage 5: Material Handling and Recycling.
Jun 18, 2012

What is soft demolition vs hard demolition? ›

“Soft demo” typically applies to home remodeling or smaller construction projects, and involves removing materials that don't contribute directly to the building's structure, such as drywall and flooring. “Hard demo,” on the other hand, involves removing the entire building.

What are simple demolition methods? ›

Implosion Method of Building Demolition

If the supports of the building are removed, the structure collapses. Using implosion technique, the main supports of the buildings such as column's, beams and slab are fixed with explosives. When these explosives are detonated, the column collapse and so is the structure.

Do you need prior approval for demolition? ›

Demolition of Buildings

Although such works are known as 'permitted development', before you can carry out the demolition you must apply to the Local Planning Authority to see if its prior approval will be required for the method of demolition and any proposed restoration of the site.

What are the two types of demolition? ›

There are two popular types of demolition: commercial and residential. Commercial demolition refers to business-specific buildings, such as office buildings and retail stores. Residential demolition refers to homes and buildings that are designated living spaces, such as homes and apartment buildings.

Can you deduct demolition expenses? ›

While demolition costs are nondeductible, a taxpayer may claim a loss deduction when depreciable business property is retired from use in a trade or business or from use in production of income ( ¶1109).

Do I need planning permission to demolish and rebuild a garage? ›

Planning permission for garages, sheds and other outbuildings. Outbuildings such as sheds, garages, greenhouses and some other structures like garden rooms are also considered to fall within permitted development so will not require planning permission.

When should you demolish a house? ›

7 Signs Your Property Needs a Demolition, Not Just a Renovation
  1. The House Has a Faulty Foundation or Other Structural Issues That Are Beyond Repair. ...
  2. Local Councils and Other Organizations Have Height, Width, and Length Restrictions. ...
  3. Your Property Doesn't Give You Space for Additions.

Can I demolish my house and rebuild if I have a mortgage? ›

Nope. Because you have a mortgage, the bank has a claim on your property equal to the balance of the mortage. You can't tear down what is in a sense the bank's property. The bank would then have neither collateral on the loan nor the money.

Can you get a mortgage for a teardown? ›

The Construction-to-permanent loans are the most popular for this type of project. Tear down home buyers utilize a construction loan to cover the expenses of demolition and rebuilding. At the end of the project, the loan will convert to a permanent mortgage.

Will a house eventually fall apart? ›

The answer is yes, however, it is also not that simple. It can take years to develop a serious foundational issue that would cause your home to collapse. In most cases, if it does, it's concentrated on a specific area of the home.

What makes a house a teardown? ›

A teardown is the demolition for replacement of a home or other building that was recently purchased for that purpose. Frequently, the new building is larger than the previous one.

Is it cheaper to buy a new house or remodel an old one? ›

Q: Is it cheaper to renovate your house, buy a used one or build a new one? A: It's almost always less expensive to renovate an existing house than to buy used or build a new one. It's easiest to break the numbers down by square foot, keeping in mind that costs are highly variable based on location and market shifts.

Is it cheaper to build a new house or remodel an old one? ›

As a rule of thumb, renovations are often less expensive than building new.

How much does it cost to take a house down to the studs? ›

According to HomeAdvisor, the average costs to gut a house, removing everything down to the studs can range anywhere from $2,000 to $20,000, depending on the size of the home and the cost of labor in a particular area.

What is the maximum size garage without planning permission? ›

If your garage is detached and built under permitted development, ie it is under 30 square metres, you will not need building regulations signoff. However, you will need building control signoff if your garage is attached to your house, if your garage has sleeping accommodation or if it is over 30 square metres.

Can you convert a garage without building regulations? ›

The conversion of a garage, or part of a garage, into habitable space will normally require approval under the Building Regulations.

What is a Section 80 demolition notice? ›

The Section 80 Demolition Notice is also known as the Notice of Intended Demolition and is featured in the 1984 Building Act. For those who have the intention to demolish a part or whole building, this notice must be completed by the person responsible.

Do I need permission to replace Windows? ›

You should not need planning permission if you are fitting windows which are identical, like-with-like replacements. However, if the new windows differ in appearance or size to those you are replacing (for instance, different glazing patterns) you may need to apply for planning permission.

Do you need permission for a new roof? ›

It is unlikely that you will need to apply for planning permission if you are re-roofing your property. The same is true if you have decided to add skylights or roof lights. Current permitted development rules allow you to alter your roof as long as they fall within certain limits and conditions.

Do you need a building warrant to demolish a building? ›

Before you demolish all or part of a structure, you will nearly always need a warrant to demolish. You may also need planning permission.

What devalues a house the most? ›

8 things that will devalue your home
  • It's important to every homeowner that their property retains its value. ...
  • 1) Poor workmanship. ...
  • 2) An increase in crime levels. ...
  • 3) A substandard kitchen. ...
  • 4) Noise pollution. ...
  • 5) Uninspiring exterior. ...
  • 6) How silent are the neighbours? ...
  • 7) Not energy efficient enough.

What lowers the value of a house? ›

Changes in the real estate market can lower the value of your home. Natural disasters and climate change can lower your property value because the property is a greater risk to purchase. Foreclosures in your neighborhood can also drive down property value.

Does garage count in home appraisal? ›

Garages and unfinished areas cannot be included in the calculation of finished square footage. Chimneys, windows, and other finished areas that protrude beyond the exterior finished surface of the outside walls and do not have a floor on the same level cannot be included in the calculation of square footage.

How do you break down price per square foot? ›

The formula to calculate price per square foot is price divided by size (in square feet). So for example, if you have a 2,000-square-foot house selling for $300,000 you take the total price, then divide it by the square footage, which would give you $150 per square foot.

How do you calculate demolition volume? ›

The Basic Formula

The formula multiplies the area's length in feet by its width in feet and its height in feet. This number is then multiplied by one-third and divided by 27 to convert the answer into cubic yards. To make it clearer, the equation is as follows: (Length (ft) x Width (ft) x Height (ft) x 1/3) / 27.

What is the formula for calculating construction cost? ›

How can I calculate construction costs? Cost of building = area of plot x construction rate per sq ft is the fundamental formula for calculating construction cost per square foot.

Is demolition capitalized or expensed? ›

The demolition costs are an expense associated with the cost of using the existing asset and are not capitalized in the cost of the new asset.

Are houses with more bedrooms worth more? ›

Based on our data, we found that, all other things being equal, your home value has the highest increase when adding a second or third bedroom. The data also shows that adding up to a 3rd bedroom can have an average increase of 6.2% for the median home. That's an estimated dollar increase of about $19,813.

Do smaller houses sell for more per square foot? ›

Yes, it's true. Generally speaking, smaller homes will sell at more per square foot than larger homes. As a home gets larger in size, the price per square foot often drops. This is another danger of using prices by square footage to put a value on a home.

How much per square foot should you pay for a house? ›

The current median price per square foot in the U.S. is around $222, according to 2022 data from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. Using the median price per square foot to help determine home values is usually a better metric than the average price per square foot.

Are demolition costs expensed? ›

While demolition costs are nondeductible, a taxpayer may claim a loss deduction when depreciable business property is retired from use in a trade or business or from use in production of income ( ¶1109).

What is the cheapest construction method? ›

The cheapest way to build a home is to design a simple box. Sticking to a square or rectangular floor plan makes the building and design simple. Generally speaking, building up is cheaper than building a sprawling one-story home, so you may want to consider planning for a multiple-story home if you need more space.

What is a construction cost breakdown? ›

Construction Cost Breakdown means the breakdown of the likely cost of construction of the Works, in form and substance satisfactory to the Trust, prepared by the Project Co and delivered to the Trust's Works Adviser before the Amendment Execution Date.

What percentage of construction cost is labor? ›

Explanation: The approximate cost of the complete labor as a percentage of the total cost of the building is 25 % or 0.25. The total cost of building also involves cost of casualty, material hike, environmental conditions, delays, insurance etc. which constitutes 5 - 10 % of the total cost.

Who pays for demolition? ›

The owner of the illegal construction is legally liable to pay demolition costs and charges.

Is demolition cost tax deductible? ›

Both the structure and the assets have a value that is written down over time as they age and wear out. When capital works and assets are demolished or disposed of, any residual value remaining in their effective life can be claimed in total as a tax deduction in the year of the demolition/disposal.

Is demolition high risk? ›

The hazards during demolition are falls, being struck or buried in falling material or by the unintentional collapse of the structure, noise, vibration, and dust. In addition workers may be exposed to hazardous chemical and biological agents.


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