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Helping homeowners better understand the costs of a potential remodeling project is an important and common first step in the due diligence process. 
The Question of Cost
On the question of cost, we've found that homeowners typically fall into two different groups  those who admit they have no idea what their project might cost, and those who have a strong belief it will cost much less than what we estimate. A very few have an accurate sense of total project costs. Helping homeowners better understand the costs of a project is an important and common first step.
Average $/SF Method
Depending on how precise you wish to be, there are two approaches you can take to assess preliminary project costs. The first step is to determine the number of SF that are being added or altered. Second, attach an overall $/SF value to those spaces. Commonly, the cost range in Minneapolis for new construction is $200 to $300/SF, depending on level of finish and neighborhood. Finally, multiply the two values and you have a project cost estimate.
Pricing Example
This pricing strategy  where all spaces are lumped together and a single $/sq. ft. cost is attached  results in a rough construction cost estimate. To illustrate how this methods works, check out the following example. We have used a $/SF range to give us a low to high cost estimate.
Project
> 12' x 24', twostory addition, over a crawl space
> $/SF Range: $220 to $275
Cost Calculation
> SF Calc: 12'x24' = 288 SF/level x 2.5 levels = 720 SF
NOTE: For this method, the crawl space is considered half a level
> Cost Calc: 720 SF x [$220 to $275]/SF = $158,400 to $198,000
This is helpful, as an initial guide, but $40K is a big range in construction cost. Please remember, too, that these costs are for labor and materials only. Builder fee, profit, and overhead would be additional cost, and together with construction costs comprise project costs.
Average $/SF Method
Depending on how precise you wish to be, there are two approaches you can take to assess preliminary project costs. The first step is to determine the number of SF that are being added or altered. Second, attach an overall $/SF value to those spaces. Commonly, the cost range in Minneapolis for new construction is $200 to $300/SF, depending on level of finish and neighborhood. Finally, multiply the two values and you have a project cost estimate.
Pricing Example
This pricing strategy  where all spaces are lumped together and a single $/sq. ft. cost is attached  results in a rough construction cost estimate. To illustrate how this methods works, check out the following example. We have used a $/SF range to give us a low to high cost estimate.
Project
> 12' x 24', twostory addition, over a crawl space
> $/SF Range: $220 to $275
Cost Calculation
> SF Calc: 12'x24' = 288 SF/level x 2.5 levels = 720 SF
NOTE: For this method, the crawl space is considered half a level
> Cost Calc: 720 SF x [$220 to $275]/SF = $158,400 to $198,000
This is helpful, as an initial guide, but $40K is a big range in construction cost. Please remember, too, that these costs are for labor and materials only. Builder fee, profit, and overhead would be additional cost, and together with construction costs comprise project costs.
SpaceSpecific Pricing Method
To gain a greater degree of pricing specificity, you can break out your project into its component spaces and attach specific $/sq ft costs to each space. Obviously, the costs to construct a new kitchen or bathroom are greater than to alter an existing bedroom or family room. This method takes that realworld condition into consideration, and places a finer point on your construction cost estimate.
To assist with pricing, we have gathered a list of common spaces and their approximate $/sq. ft. costs. These are 2017 price assumptions for the city of Minneapolis. If you're in the suburbs or outstate, your costs may be different. The pricing shown in the first column is for an addition [new spaces], while the second column is for a renovation [alteration of existing spaces]. We've found renovation costs to be about 80% of the costs of new construction.
To gain a greater degree of pricing specificity, you can break out your project into its component spaces and attach specific $/sq ft costs to each space. Obviously, the costs to construct a new kitchen or bathroom are greater than to alter an existing bedroom or family room. This method takes that realworld condition into consideration, and places a finer point on your construction cost estimate.
To assist with pricing, we have gathered a list of common spaces and their approximate $/sq. ft. costs. These are 2017 price assumptions for the city of Minneapolis. If you're in the suburbs or outstate, your costs may be different. The pricing shown in the first column is for an addition [new spaces], while the second column is for a renovation [alteration of existing spaces]. We've found renovation costs to be about 80% of the costs of new construction.
Again, the $/sq. ft. numbers listed cover material and labor, costs only. Builder, design, and engineering fees are additional costs.
Pricing Example, Revisited
If the earlier pricing example were broken out into its individual spaces, using the $/SF values in the chart above, it might look like this:
Lower Level
Crawl Space: 12' x 24' = 288 SF x $55/SF = $15,840
Main Level
Kitchen: 150 SF x $375/SF = $56,250
Family Room: 138 SF x $250/SF = $34,500
Upper Level
Bedrooms: [2] x 110 SF x $175 = $38,500
Full Bathroom: 68 SF x $400 = $27,200
Project Total = $172,290
This is a quick method of ascertaining approximate project costs early in the design process. When pricing initial layouts in SD, we typically add a 510% contingency to this number to account for construction surprises [if a remodel of existing rooms], and the preliminary juncture of the design process.
Pricing Example, Revisited
If the earlier pricing example were broken out into its individual spaces, using the $/SF values in the chart above, it might look like this:
Lower Level
Crawl Space: 12' x 24' = 288 SF x $55/SF = $15,840
Main Level
Kitchen: 150 SF x $375/SF = $56,250
Family Room: 138 SF x $250/SF = $34,500
Upper Level
Bedrooms: [2] x 110 SF x $175 = $38,500
Full Bathroom: 68 SF x $400 = $27,200
Project Total = $172,290
This is a quick method of ascertaining approximate project costs early in the design process. When pricing initial layouts in SD, we typically add a 510% contingency to this number to account for construction surprises [if a remodel of existing rooms], and the preliminary juncture of the design process.