Home Buying in Truro>Question Details

mreissdrisco…, Home Owner in Truro, MA

What is a range of cost per square foot to build a home on Cape Cod? Looking to build a 2,200 sq. foot home.

Asked by mreissdriscoll, Truro, MA Tue Mar 19, 2013

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BEST ANSWER
Hi Mreissdriscoll.

The property may have specific costs.
Closer to the water, historic district, personal choice of quality of materials, quality of the builder, experience of the builder, and possibly the town and area within the town will all affect the per foot cost.
Averages are only for statistical news reports.

I would choose a builder or two with finished projects that you like and interview them for costs, schedule, etc.
Everything else is guessing.


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1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 20, 2013
Interior finishes can make the cost vary quite a bit. A contractor (Coastal Construction and Remodeling in Eastham...can get you their contact info if interested) recently told me that $200 to $250 is a good ballpark for a house with fairly nice interior finishes. However, it is possible to build something for as low as $150 (but the finishes and materials would be more builders grade). Cost can also vary depending on whether you are buying into a subdivision where the builder is selling the land plus house as a package deal. (The seller / builder will often adjust the price you pay for the land up or down depending on what you want in terms of the house.) If you are working with an established larger builder (like Reef or Eastward and the like), they usually pay close attention to the allowances! Sometimes the allowance list has prices for builder grade finishes which you will want to upgrade -- but you pay extra. The most important thing: make sure you use a builder who obtains and follows through on all building permits. It is a pain in the neck, but the process is there for your protection. Best of luck!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 20, 2013
Thank you. This information was very helpful. We already have the land and will be doing a tear down of our existing cottage before building our small (2,200sq. ft.) retirement home. I will try and get in touch with Coastal Construction.
Flag Thu Mar 21, 2013
This is such BS. The only reason the question can't be answered accurately is because there is no STANDARD to base the answer on. If we all had a STANDARD Design Print with specs like 1800 square foot ranch, 2 x 6 inch walls, Solid wood oak floors, six panel pine interior doors, Andersen model XXX windows and patio slider, XYZ kitchen cabinets model 123, Quartz counter tops from ABC company, XYZ premium composite siding, ABC architectural roof shingles, etc…. you get the point where I am going here? The home building industry needs to get off their backside and come up with a set of standardized plans for a RANCH, CAPE COD, COLONIAL etc… then, we consumers could get an idea of cost based upon that. If you upgrade or downgrade from the standard, then, in theory you would expect the price to decrease or increase. And on another note Cape Cod based contractors are notorious for not answering phone calls. Some of these guys have been quoted as saying "If I can't get a job on a High End home (aka very high cost McMansion) then, I'd rather sit at home on my couch". I have called many contractors over the years and I'm amazed at how many never return phone calls. I'll get off my soapbox now.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 18, 2014
9/25/13
I am in cost shock. Minimal costs on Cape Cod being given to me by reputable contractors are $275-$300 sq ft. new construction minimum. Your taste in trimmings/appliances etc. determines the plus factor.

I am also doing a project in Montana and have done projects in Connecticut in the country and in the city including historic district. Montana is $150,00 sq foot and in CT the Northern corner is a lot less than in Hartford or New Haven. Codes influence costs. Cape Cod is highly regulated. Building is now to the standards of a super hurricane coming through. Old house renovations are no longer a labor of love, but one for someone with extremely deep pockets. Tearing down is cheaper than renovating. What a shame. Good bye "Old Cape Cod".

The work I have done in historic districts is confining and super expensive as well as fire districts in cities.

Do your homework ALWAYS. I had 3 plain wooden steps to build off my porch on Cape Cod. I called 2 handymen advertised in the local paper. The first bid was $2,800!!!! The 2nd bid $600.
The steps in fact were worth only about $250.

Even amongst reputable builders there may be a huge difference in bid. The first bid I got was $60,000, the 2nd $12,000 and the 3rd $10,000 which turned into $12,000 when we discovered we needed to plywood the roof before re-shingling - not evident before the shingles were removed.

I decided a recent renovation was not that involved and wanted to hire builders at an hourly rate as opposed to getting a bid. All was well, they got on my calendar in May to show up in September. They never showed up. Scrambling to replace to keep on schedule, and now the contractors bidding know they have me by the !(&$&&@)(!!! Lesson learned.

One of the biggest problems of today's pricing is comparing it to building one has done years ago. I put on a whole 2nd floor of a house in the 1990s for $25,000. It was gorgeous. Today $25,000 might buy me part of a bathroom. Also back when I could climb ladders and tackle saws, hammers, etc. I did a lot of stuff myself. ($0) Funny how replacing yourself is sooooo expensive.

Good luck all you renovators - new house builders. Go for your dreams but have a fall back plan in case it breaks the bank. - Nancy T-V
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 25, 2013
Great question! I am in the process of building a home. I have interviewed builders from mid cape to lower Cape. The average is anywhere between $225 -$275/square foot depending on the quality of construction and upgrades you are seeking. I am also investigating modular builders, on and off the Cape, which average around $175/square foot. Of course this can go higher depending on the upgrades and customization. Both stick built and modular have pros and cons. My advice, find homes you love, meet with the builders that built them. If your plan is unique, you may need to invest in an architect to help builders give you a more realistic quote...and then get two stck built quotes and two modular quotes. Good Luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jul 25, 2013
Around here I would figure around 230 a sq ft. You can shop around of course and some folks are building the modular homes that work out to be a lot less.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 19, 2013
I want to build a modular home on my land in Sagamore Beach. I am looking for one of those builders you mentioned who can build it for a lot less. Any good suggestions?
Flag Mon Jun 24, 2013
It could be $150/sqft to $800/sqft
There are just too many variables!
Like asking how much a new car costs.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 19, 2013
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