How Much Does That Home Repair Cost? America Answers

man setting tile on cement...
One of the biggest headaches in moving forward with a home improvement project is determining the cost. Unless you're a contractor or home repair expert, it can be difficult to gauge the expected cost of everything from installing a faucet to remodeling a bathroom.

That's why it's helpful to consult a price-comparison study like the new True Cost Report by HomeAdvisor. Prices vary by geographic location, with kitchen and bathroom remodeling, for instance, costing the least in Cincinnati and the most in San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego.

Overpaying a Top Concern

Almost half of homeowners put off projects or try to complete them on their own if they can't find reliable cost information, HomeAdvisor found in a related survey of 367 homeowners.

Millennials, more than any other age group, attempt to do it themselves when they think hiring a pro is too expensive (64 precent) or put a project off when they don't know how much it will cost (52 percent), according to HomeAdvisor.

Overpaying for a home project is a concern among two-thirds of homeowners, and more than a third of don't know how much it will cost to hire a professional, the survey found. Most estimate that projects will cost less than the actual cost.

The report also found that nearly half of homeowners distrust professional estimates and assume they'll pay more. It found that 35 percent of homeowners reported paying more than originally quoted for projects.

Top Costs

The report lists costs of 350 projects in 50 areas, along with a national average, and high and low costs (The 50 are the nation's largest designated market areas, essentially meaning that they have access to the same TV stations.) Here are some breakdowns, based on data provided by homeowners:
  • Kitchen remodel: $19,935 is the national average. The price range is wide, from $8,000 to $45,000, because there are so many variables, such as size of the room, quality of appliances and materials and possible layout changes. Most homeowners pay between $10,957 and $30,000 for a kitchen remodel. Homeowners in San Francisco; Los Angeles; Hartford, Connecticut; and San Diego reported paying the most. A kitchen remodel was cheapest in Indianapolis; Cincinnati; Memphis, Tennessee; and Milwaukee.
  • Bathroom remodel: $8,940 is the national average, with most people spending $5,000 to $13,000. The highest cost reported was $20,000. Again, the cost depends on variables, such as size of the room and materials and amenities that are upgraded. The highest costs were in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Memphis and San Diego. The least expensive bathroom remodels were in Greensboro, North Carolina; Cincinnati; and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
  • Exterior home painting: $2,500 is the national average, with most spending between $1,500 and $3,600. The top cost was $5,005. The home's size is the biggest factor, since it impacts how much paint, time and labor will be required. Painting the outside of a home was the most expensive in Boston, Los Angeles, Hartford and San Francisco. It was least expensive in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Pittsburgh; Columbus, Ohio; and Oklahoma City.
  • Sprinkler system: $2,500 is the national average. The highest cost is $4,500, and the lowest is $1,100. Sprinkler installation is one of the most popular searches on the website, and cost is affected by property size and quality of parts.
  • Septic tank installation: $4,500 is the national average for this service, which is the most searched for service on the site. Costs range from $1,260 to $11,000. The size and type of tank determine cost, with concrete the most common type at the average price range.
Other popular searches, with the national average cost: Clean a septic tank, $350; hire a land surveyor, $450; build an addition, $35,000; install an air conditioner, $5,000; install a furnace, $4,000; repair a foundation, $3,500; and install a roof, $6,429.
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