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Cost of Raising Ceiling in 2 upstairs rooms?


I am looking for info on how much it might cost to raise the ceiling height in two of my upstairs bedrooms. The rooms are 12x14 and 12x15. The house was built in 1850 but has been completely renovated in 2004. These two bedrooms have a low ceiling height - 6.5' or 7' tall. Dormer windows were added in front during the renovation, but they didn't raise ceiling height. Every other room (both up and down) have normal ceiling heights. I should mention that during the renovation, they also replaced roof, updated electrical, and added HVAC system. Any info on the cost I'm looking at for this project is greatly appreciated.


Re: Cost of Raising Ceiling in 2 upstairs rooms?

What you should do is get at least three estimates from well-known local contractors for this work. From here we can't tell just what is involved. You may have head-space at the rafter line or you may need to raise the roof in toto. You probably have HVAC, plumbing, and wiring involved here too. With so many possible variables we can't even make an educated guess at the cost for you; this kind of thing requires an onsite look, not just pics or a description.

When you do get the estimates, get the specifics of exactly what they intend to do so that you're "comparing apples to apples". If there is a wide range between lowest and highest estimates with the same work involved, get a few more estimates. If someone has a different approach than the rest, then call all the others who gave you estimates and see what they have to say about it. Going about it this way should help you find a good contractor who won't take shortcuts with your home.


Re: Cost of Raising Ceiling in 2 upstairs rooms?

Thanks Phil. I plan on doing all of the above, plus contacting the builder who did the remodeling back in 2004. Safe to say over 20k?

Re: Cost of Raising Ceiling in 2 upstairs rooms?

The work involves removing the existing ceiling and joists, framing for the new ceiling roll the joists and finish. You also have to make sure you have sufficient space above the ceiling.

The price will be determined based on the following facts:

1. How easy it is to work in the attic. Is the space free of interruptions and no additional cutting required.
2. Price of materials.
3. Estimated job duration.
4. Your location.
5. Keep in mind that working in attics is extremely difficult.

I don't know 1 and 4 in your case, but if I did this job here at an easy uncomplicated attic, less than 20K. More than that if otherwise.

Re: Cost of Raising Ceiling in 2 upstairs rooms?

E: it looks like you want the ceilings raised to follow the contour of the attic; it would be a wo_w factor if you can do it, but you have to temper it with the financial payback.

You can surf through TOH galleries and you'll find how DIYers finished their attics or built a dream 3rd level just for a MBR & large Bath, or general purpose loft, etc., all for $13K !! -- then you find out these DIYers have competent skills, or are insiders like architects with a rolodex of contractors, or have a father-in-law in construction, etc. Those TV $2,000 projects done in a 22 minutes episode would cost us $5,000 and 1 month of of disruption and 1 month of pre-work research.

Let me get to the point; if you can get 1/3 of the ceiling to be 9 ft or higher, following an A contour or any interior roof line, it will make the actual 6 ft. perimeter height disappear. Your 2 rooms are spacious (12 x15) even in McMansion world and I think you would really want to use the rooms after living with 6-7 feet. I had a well laid-out 9x6 full bath that felt a lot bigger because the ceiling "soared" 9+ feet. But $15-$20K is lot to spend. The best projects get a 85% immediate "return"; a swimming pool, I believe is about 55% with some requiring it and others labeling it a deal killer.

The fact that the ceiling was built at 6-7 ft in 2004 after a "complete renovation" is very puzzling -- was it bad design or advice, structual issues, ran out of budget or something else ? With everything opened up in 2004, the work could have been done at 1/2 the cost than today with demo & renovate. Worse yet, what's up there that the 2004 built was 6-7 feet and not a soaring ceiling ? (Also, isn't there code preventing living space ceiling below 7 ft ?).

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