If you’ve ever been through the process of building a new home you know there are many, many pieces and parts to consider – and everything has a cost. To really understand where all of your money actual goes during the construction process we took a close look at an average building cost breakdown. The National Association of Home Builders 2013 construction survey was sent to 3,019 home builders. The questions asked were regarding the construction cost details of a single-family home built in 2013.

What the 2013 construction cost survey revealed

The average home built in 2013 was:

  • 2,607 square feet of finished area
  • constructed on 14,359 square feet of land (about a third of an acre)
  • sold for $399,532
  • average share of the home’s sales price which goes to construction cost was 62% (up from 59% in 2011)
  • second largest share of the sales price, which was the finished lot costs, was 19% (lower than the 2011 share of 22%)
  • builder profits accounted for 9.3 % of the sales price

What factors contributed to construction cost increases

The average construction cost is much higher than the 2011 cost, which was $184,125, and NAHB notes it is the highest it’s been since 1998. The 2013 construction cost per square foot ($95) also jumped in comparison to 2011, where it was $80 per square foot. Framing and trusses are the largest component of construction costs. This survey’s results showed that in 2013, the share of construction costs going to framing and trusses was nearly 17%, up from only 13.5% in 2011. The cost per square foot of framing and trusses was $11 in 2011 and jumped to $16 per square foot in 2013. The reason behind these increases is possibly attributed to rising lumber costs and shortage of professional framers. Framing crews were reportedly hard to come by in 2013. It was reported that 48% of builders reported a shortage of framing crews.

Breakdown of 2013 construction costs

Here are the detailed construction costs results from the NAHB 2013 survey:



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