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Old 07-21-2008, 04:54 PM
Location: Southern California
421 posts, read 2,655,940 times
Reputation: 274


Since I've been batting a zero on my previous guesses, I thought I'd ask the experts before I get too deep.

My parents have made an offer on a small house in N.Cal that was originally about 1100 sqft but is now 1500 because the previous owner has added rooms like he was attaching Leggo parts. Not only are the rooms tiny and ugly and done without permits, but a lot of it still has raw sheetrock exposed and two of them join to the main house by sliding glass doors (that used to go outside).

You have to be at the very bottom of the market in CA to not call this a tear down. In Kansas, they'd use it to store hay

I was told that its "much cheaper" to tear down than to build. Ofcourse, I had visions of taking a hammer to the walls myself like I've seen them do on HGTV ..but is that realistic? I don't think theres any plumbing to worry about but I know I can't tear up electrical wiring etc..

Can anyone tell me what does it cost to have rooms torn down professionally?
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Old 07-21-2008, 08:32 PM
Location: Houston, Texas
10,425 posts, read 42,578,567 times
Reputation: 10302
For such a major demolition you might want to check if a demolition permit is needed. Everyone will see you doing it and there will be a rat among them.

I really dont think anyone can give you an estimate here. No self respecting contractor would ever give an estimate over the phone or by way of this forum.

You can hire some parking lot loiterers from Home Depot parking lot who will work for $60 a day. If one gets hurt they will still have the right to sue you for damages and medical bills. Can you believe that? An illegal person having as many rights as you the deed holder.

A contractor might just give you a flat rate which I would go with. That way your price is fixed and you dont have to worry about them milking it.

You will have disposal costs. What does it cost to rent a 20 YD container? In Nevada it costs about $200 and in New Jersey or New York it cost about $3000 for the same 20 YD container.

If you are going to rebuild on the slab or whatever is under it why not have the builder you hire do the demo. At least they should be insured.
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Old 07-21-2008, 09:25 PM
Location: Southern California
421 posts, read 2,655,940 times
Reputation: 274
Good point desertsun41! After a few hours of HGTV, I start feeling like I could tackle any project, even demo!

My parents weren't going to build anything since all the ugly addons have taken up most of the yard and they prefer a bigger yard to more rooms. But they'll probably want to redo the kitchen which is really horrible looking so maybe I can get the contractor to do both (with permits I agree!)
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Old 07-22-2008, 08:55 AM
Location: Visitation between Wal-Mart & Home Depot
8,309 posts, read 32,422,019 times
Reputation: 7013
I dove headfirst into an extensive remodel in my first house without the slightest clue what I was doing. I found that the learning curve was very steep and garnered two very important lessons:

One: Excluding main plumbing and electrical work before the main breaker, any work that you would pay someone else to do you can do yourself.

Two: I'll never do work on my house myself that I can pay someone else to do again.

You can do it, but by the time you figure out what you're doing, you're finished and probably will never use the lessons learned again. If you can afford it, just get a contractor.
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