The Costs Involved With Moving a House
Are you wondering how much it costs to move a house? Moving from home to home is complicated enough, but it’s a whole different ball game if you actually want to move a house.
While you have packing to organize when moving from your old home to your new one, there is a lot more involved in transporting a house from one location to another.
The idea of having your house lifted and transported to another location might seem strange, but it does offer advantages over simply purchasing a new home in many situations.
As you might imagine, the cost to move a house will be high, with specialists required. This can include a structural moving company as well as a general contractor. Other house moving specialists will be involved, including electricians, plumbers, and a concrete company.
These professionals will follow a plan to make sure the property move is successful. There is a lot more to consider with a house moving project than you might imagine. Many houses can be moved. It just depends on whether the expense is worth it or not.
While choosing to move a home isn’t the easiest option, there are a few good reasons to make this choice. Let’s take a look at the cost of moving a house to a new location and all the things you need to think about before you decide this is the right option for you.
Use this as your guide on what to know before moving your house to a different lot.
When is Moving a Home a Good Idea?
Physically moving a house from point A to point B is common under the following conditions.
- If you’d like to set your home further back from the street.
- If you’d like to move your waterfront home further away from the shoreline, especially in areas where there is significant coastal erosion that could impact the property.
- When you have a historic home that you don’t want to be demolished. If your home has historical value and is listed on the national historic registry, this could certainly be the case. Some properties have incredible architecture that is worthy of relocating.
- If you need serious repairs to the foundations.
- When you want to add a full basement.
- To remove the risk of flood damage or get out of a flood zone to remove expensive insurance costs.
- To take advantage of extra space when you have purchased a neighboring lot. Maybe you got a land loan to purchase a vacant building lot adjacent to the property?
- If you love your home, but you don’t love its location. A few years ago, I had a client in Milford, Massachusetts, who thought about moving their home. They ended up deciding against it due to the costs involved.
These are all great considerations for moving a house from one location to another.
Situations When Moving Your Home Isn’t a Good Choice
- If your home has structural problems, these should be dealt with first.
- If you need to relocate to a new city or there is a high probability it could happen in the future.
- When you want to keep costs to a minimum, moving a home will always be an expensive option. It should be reserved when your living plans are long-term.
The Advantages of Choosing to Move a House
Historic homes are one type of property where this option makes a lot of sense. This can prevent a historic home from falling victim to a demolition crew, moving the property to a better area. Older homes that can’t easily be replaced can justify the expense if they hold some architectural value.
Homes located in flood zones are another relatively common reason to move a house. Sometimes problems with flooding can be resolved by lifting the house off its foundations. This allows the foundations to be repaired or raised to reduce the risk of flooding.
If you have decided to lift the home to replace the foundations, moving it to a new lot should be considered. The added cost of moving the home can often be recovered with the increased value of the property.
The Disadvantages of Choosing to Move a Home
Even though you aren’t moving to a new home, you will have to move out in the short term. You cannot remain in the property while preparations are made and the home is transported.
It can take several months to move a house, and you will have to find other accommodation during that time. You will also need to store your furniture and possessions while the house is moved.
The expenses involved in choosing to relocate your home are certainly a disadvantage. Let’s take a closer look.
What is the Cost to Move a Home?
When it comes to moving houses, one of the most important questions people ask is how much does it cost to relocate a home.
The cost to move a house will be an important consideration for any homeowner thinking about this option. Moving a house to a new foundation can be costly.
The cost to move a property depends on many factors, and there isn’t a standard price. Trying to figure out an average cost is not practical as many factors are affecting the pricing.
However, typical prices range from between $12 and $16 per square foot. This could mean that moving a home costs as much as three-quarters of the price of a new build of a similar size.
Depending on how straightforward moving the property is, labor and transporting expenses can cost homeowners anywhere from $15,000 to more than $200,000 for more complex jobs.
On top of this, the cost to pour the foundations at the new location needs to be added to the budget.
Factors Affecting the Cost of Moving a House
All of the following will be crucial elements in determining the pricing to move a house.
The Size and Weight of The Home
It makes sense that the size of your home and its weight would create an extra charge. Larger homes require more work from contractors. There will be more preparation and increased difficulty in transporting a larger building.
A large home is also going to weigh more, requiring more heavy-duty equipment. Homes constructed of brick will also add a lot to the structure’s weight, adding to the homeowner’s costs. It makes sense that a luxury 4000 square foot home will be more costly to move than a 600 square foot tiny home or container house.
The Kind of Structure
There are many different kinds of structures. You can have homes with stone, brick, logs, block, steel, and terra-cotta tile. Is it a stick-built or modular home? All of these important factors with pricing.
What Are The Accessories?
Does the home have porches, decks, balconies, garages, and other structures that are part of the building? These are all things that can be moved rather than removing them, but they add to the cost.
The Distance For Moving The Home
The further you need the home transported, the greater the costs are going to be. Repositioning the home on your lot, perhaps to move it further away from a busy road, is going to be cheaper than moving it a few miles.
Not only will the transportation company’s costs increase, but there will be an additional charge to prepare the route.
A long-distance move out of state is usually not feasible due to obstacles to contend with, such as power lines, bridges, trees, and other objects. Even the width of the roads traveled can come into play.
Crossing state lines with a home is typically challenging to do for all of the reasons mentioned. If you could create a navigatable route, the overall cost is bound to be much higher.
You should expect an additional cost for moving to another state. The total cost could get to a point where it is not really worth it. A cross-country move is almost always out of the question.
The Shape of The House
properties that don’t use the space efficiently, with more intricate designs, will probably be more expensive than a compact home.
Single-story ranch-style homes are likely to be more expensive to move than a boxy multiple-story home with the same square footage.
When a home has more angles and wing extensions, you can expect the moving costs to be higher.
Access to The Property
Homes on larger lots are easier to move for contractors. This gives them more space to work and maneuver the home.
When there is limited space for getting around, the moving quote will be higher.
House moving companies will charge more if they don’t have adequate room to move around the property with standard equipment.
If they have to bring in smaller, more specialized equipment, they will charge more. Their hourly rate will go up and, therefore, the average price.
The Kind of Foundations and Their Height
The type of foundations that the home is sitting on can affect the cost. Homes that are built on pier foundations are easier to move and so cheaper. The crawl space can make lifting the home more straightforward, allowing steel beams to be positioned underneath the property.
The basement or crawl space height is essential because it determines how you can install the steel lifting beams. If the ceiling height is lower than three feet, it can make the job more costly as it adds time to excavate the ground necessary to install the lifting steel.
Raising and Moving a House With a Slab Works Too
Folks often ask if you can move a house on a slab, and the answer is yes, you can. House movers will use a jackhammer to build tunnels so that support beams can be inserted, and then the structure lifted.
So, the raising of the house will be completed by having the transporting beams placed under the concrete slab floors.
The Labor Costs Involved
Moving a property is a specialist job, and you need to hire experts to carry out the work. The more complications your home move has, the more of these experts’ time it’s going to take. They will need to visit both the current site of the home and the new location.
The route the home will be moved along will also need to be checked, which will add to the homeowner’s costs. You can expect to pay an extra fee when you need to have traffic control.
The New Foundation
There are a few methods for moving a house onto a new foundation. The most practical is to have the new foundation in place prior to the home being moved.
Another way of doing it is having the footings poured in advance. The house movers will then move your home down a ramp and into position over the footers.
The house is then lifted and supported. A new foundation will be built under the home.
Don’t Forget About Permits
Another cost to move a home but essential nonetheless is the building permits. You can expect your city or town to require a building permit for moving a property from one lot to another or even on the same lot.
The best way to find out is to visit the local building department to find out. They will also be able to give you an idea of the permitting costs.
Preparations For Relocating a Home
One of the most critical aspects of moving a house is the preparation beforehand.
You will need to start by getting all of the utilities to the property disconnected. This will include gas or oil lines, water, sewer, electric, cable, and telephone.
All of the piping in the house will need to be disconnected. This includes removing any plumbing, ductwork, and piping between the floor joists in the basement or crawl space.
You will need to remove shrubbery, steps, ramps, or fences that could encumber the move on the exterior.
Selecting Your Home Moving Professionals
If you decide that moving your house is what you really want to do, you need to work with reliable experts. You also want to make sure that the companies you are working with are competitive, particularly when this type of move will cost you a lot.
Like general moving companies, there are professional movers for houses. They are full-service movers that know exactly how to move a house with great care.
Get quotes from multiple companies and make sure they have the experience of moving homes like yours. Also, check out feedback from previous customers. This should satisfy you that the company is reliable and offer the promised level of service.
Before you make your final selection and commit to a transportation company, make sure they have the correct licenses and insurance to operate.
House Moving Companies Near Me
You may be wondering how to find a company that moves houses. It’s not like housing moving is an everyday occurrence. Relying on friends and family for a recommendation won’t be the same as hiring a traditional moving company.
In order to find a house moving company nearby, you will probably need to do a Google search. You can try house moving companies near me, house movers near me, or companies that move houses to find these specialized professionals.
Can Any Type of House Be Moved?
As previously mentioned, some of the key factors to whether a home can be moved are, well, the obstacles in the way. Things like trees and powerlines can restrict the distance a home can be moved. For this reason, houses moved on the East Coast don’t normally go beyond a few miles.
Even with a relatively small home, there can be problems with overhead lines. The utility companies will need to be contacted to find out if lines can be temporarily removed and at what cost. The answer you get from the utility companies could be a big factor in deciding whether moving the property is worth the expense.
Brick-built homes can be moved like wooden homes, though you can expect the cost to be higher. Thanks to the extra weight of a brick-constructed property, more care needs to be taken when transporting the home.
How Do You Move a Home?
The process of moving a house needs to be carefully planned. There are steps to moving a house that needs to be followed for everything to go smoothly.
The general contractor, engineers, and architect will need to establish what needs to be done to allow the move to occur. Permits will be needed and have to be applied for before any work can begin.
County and state permits to move a home aren’t normally cheap. Depending on your location, you could end up spending more than $10,000 on permits alone. You need to check these permit costs as well as zoning regulations early on in the planning stage.
Once permits have been approved, the general contractor will have to find the best route to the new location. This will involve traveling the route, checking the width of the road, and looking out for obstructions.
Plans will need to be made to take care of any obstructions that will be in the way of the move. Preparation will include things like trimming back trees, dealing with power and other utility lines, and even removing utility poles and traffic lights if necessary.
There are also some factors on the route that may be more difficult to deal with.
Any sharp turns or difficult terrain will have to be looked at to ensure that the home will get to its new lot. For longer moves, escort vehicles will be needed.
Before the contractors arrive at the home to prepare it for the move, items will need to be removed from crawl spaces and the basement.
Appliances, utilities, plumbing, as well as ducts will need to be disconnected and removed. On the outside of the property, decks and steps will need to be removed before the transporting company arrives.
A transporting company will prepare the home for the move. A network of beams will be used to support the building during its transport.
The house moving company will drill holes in the foundations to allow their hydraulic jacking system to lift the home. Once this has been achieved, they can install dollies to allow the home to move away from its original foundations.
The house can then begin its slow journey towards the new foundations.
Preparing The New Location For Your Home
The new lot has to be ready before the home arrives. New foundations need to be excavated, and the concrete poured.
Once the transporting company arrives at the new lot, a ramp will normally be used to move the home on its dollies over the new foundations. When correctly positioned, the home will be jacked up, allowing the dollies to be removed and left on the steel structure on top of the foundations.
Contractors can then build up the foundations to their final level. When this has been completed, the transport company can return to lower the home onto its foundations and remove their equipment.
Finishing work still needs to be completed on the home, with utilities connected. A general contractor can take care of this work, and on completion, it will be ready to move back into.
What Risks are Involved in Moving a House?
Counter to what you might assume, the risks involved in moving a house are relatively small. The largest danger for homeowners is actually the cost. Embarking on a project like this can end up costing more than initially assumed.
To avoid this risk, the homeowner should ensure that they have an emergency fund built into their calculations.
There are also some risks of structural damage to the home, but these will be minimal if you use an experienced company. You should also have sufficient insurance cover to make sure you don’t have to worry.
Do You Need to Remove Your Possession Out of The House?
More than likely, the property moving company you are working with will not require you to empty your house before they move it. It would, however, be advisable for you to remove anything fragile.
You should remove any items in bookcases. All glassware and other delicate items in a hutch or other furniture should be packed away.
Your furniture should be tightly packed up against the exterior walls. You will need to remove all items from the basement completely. Make sure before your home is raised and moved that your homeowner’s insurance will cover any damages related to the move, including the structure itself.
You may need to purchase additional protection.
Final Thoughts on Home Moves
Deciding to move your home to a new location isn’t going to be right for everyone and every situation. It makes for a better choice in many situations, allowing you to continue living in a home you really like, just in a better location.
While it isn’t a good choice if you are looking for a bargain or moving long-distance, it is an option that is often overlooked. It allows you to improve your current home, moving it away from a noisy street, or repositioning it on a better lot.
About the author: The above Real Estate information on how much it costs to move a house was provided by Bill Gassett, a Nationally recognized leader in his field. Bill can be reached via email at email@example.com or by phone at 508-625-0191. Bill has helped people move in and out of many Metrowest towns for the last 34+ Years.
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