How Much Does A Dormer Cost?

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    A dormer, for those who aren’t sure of what it is, acts simply as an extension to a house. It usually runs horizontally at the edge of a house’s roof or in the middle of its slope, a “tip” connected to an upper room; its window, naturally enough, is a called a “dormer window.” And it’s a surprisingly affordable piece of architecture, compared to the cost of a house that is already built.  As usual, of course, the cost of a dormer depends upon its size and the labor involved.

    What’s The Cost Of Adding A Dormer?

    The answer to what it costs begins with how big of a dormer you want. Estimate perhaps a 5 to 7 foot (width) by 8 to 10 ft (height) structure. That’s a good beginning size – it will give a nice homey look, and can be used for storage or a child’s playroom (as long as there are only one or two children). Assume also a single window to look out (not really complete without one, is it?).  This dormer addition cost, if you do it yourself, will be approximately $1,700 to $2,000 in materials, not counting tools (circular saws and framing squares, among other needs, will add at least a couple of hundred dollars to the estimate).  This assumes, of course, that you either have a handyman who will work at little to no cost, or you plan to add it on yourself.

    What Do Dormers On Houses Cost?

    Dormers on houses, in the process of being built, will add an estimated $2,000-$3,000 to the price of the home’s construction, if designed as incorporations during the early phase of building. This also assumes the dormer to be the same size as stipulated before (roof dormer cost is considerably less if added to the budget of a house’s construction in the actual planning stages).

    If the dormer is added on after the house is already built, and is the small sized model already discussed with a single-to-double-wide window built in, dormer cost will run at least $2500, and more likely $5000 or more, depending on materials, time, and the number of construction workers used.

    Overall, What Does Dormer Construction Cost?

    Assume you want a slightly larger dormer than what we’ve been discussing—something room-size, and big enough for your chair and reading light and tables and perhaps a closet. Assume you’re going to have a group of construction workers install it. They will take between one to two weeks at the very least, more likely a month or longer, and the starting price will probably be $20,000 at the very least. At the other end of the spectrum, a complete conversion of your attic will run you between $45,000 and $60,000 (based on a nationwide average, as determined in a survey held by Remodeling Magazine).

    Prefab Dormers

    Any number of websites will give you a large selection of pre-fabricated dormers for installation into an already-completed domicile. They will require at least a few days of construction time, as well as the manpower to lift and transport, as they can be quite weighty.  Usually they are ordered for entire conversions or large areas (between 600 and 800 feet), and can be quite expensive, running from $8,000 to $14,000 and up, labor and installation not included.  Once you get it up there, of course, it’s not that difficult a do-it-yourself project to install, but the logistics of setting it into place are difficult and costly.

    Adding A Dormer

    As you can see, adding a dormer does involve a great deal of planning and, if built into an already existing structure, a great deal of time and expense. The benefits are numerous, however: you get an additional room and added space in the house, more light and heat provided through the addition of another window, and a genuinely elegant look to the roof of your dwelling place.

    Building A Dormer

    And one last thought: for the do-it-yourselfer, there is no building endeavor with more levels of difficulty (the dormer framing alone, especially with a prefab, is beyond most home builders) than building a dormer; however, there is also no home project that gives more satisfaction, and added beauty, to your home.

    Dormer Styles

    There are a number of different dormer styles available, especially in the prefabricated collections on some websites.  The most popular include the barrel roof dormer, a piece shaped like a half-barrel that attaches to the roof and provides a vent. Then there is the eyebrow dormer, which curves upward and raises its barrel shape until it resembles a lifted eyebrow, curving like a bow with the bowstring flush against the roof. The third, and perhaps most stylish, is the colonial dormer, which usually includes a built-in window set in a columned triangle that juts out of the roof and gives an additional air of solidity and age to the building.

    What Does A Shed Dormer Cost?

    This is an adjunctive addition to an already existing shed, done at the slope of the roof (or in the center of the structure, if one is building onto a barn).  If the shed is a small one, and you are doing the addition yourself, you may get by with as little as $1,000 for materials. You can expect to double that amount for contracted work done by others, which will include designing the addition as well as labor and man-hours; you must also figure in the cost of the transportation of materials to your site in adding up the total shed dormer cost.

    What Does A Gable Dormer Cost?

    If you’re a big fan of Nathaniel Hawthorne, especially his classic House of the Seven Gables, it may interest you to know that a contracted gable dormer, added on to an existing house, will probably be among the most expensive estimates included here.  The builders will probably need to be contracted and certified workers, as the level of difficulty in creating an actual gable is beyond most home do-it-yourselfers. The cost of a dormer such as this, while it may honor the great New England author’s memory no end, will run you between $15,000 and $25,000.

    What Do Dormer Windows Cost?

    They don’t need to be huge picture windows, obviously, but one can proceed on two assumptions—one, you want it built into the dormer that’s being constructed, rather than cut from the material and installed later. If that’s the case, dormer window cost is estimated at between $2,500 and $3,500; if you have a dormer already, and you’re thinking of cutting a hole and installing it yourself, figure $1000 to $1200 for materials; it will be in the high end of $3,000 and above if a contractor adds it on.

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