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A Comprehensive Cost Guide to Tearing Down a Garage

December 13, 2023
A Comprehensive Cost Guide to Tearing Down a Garage

You may need to tear down your garage if it’s no longer safe to use or you need a space for a room. However, tearing down a garage can be a huge investment, so it’s important to budget it beforehand.

The average cost to tear down a garage is $6,000, but this can vary depending on various factors. Some cost as low as $960 or as high as $10,000, depending on the demolition method, the garage type, size, material, and other factors. 

To get a better estimate for your garage, here’s a breakdown of the costs:

Cost to Tear Down Garage by Type

Cost to Tear Down Garage by Type
Garage TypeCost
Attached Garage$3,500 to $4,600
Detached Garage$2,300 to $3,450

Attached Garage

Attached Garage

Attached garages are physically connected to the main house, making the demolition process more complicated and potentially expensive.

Since it shares some structural elements with the house, like walls and roofing, the contractors will have to make some structural modifications to ensure the safety of the main house before tearing down an attached garage.

If you have a 24’ x 24’ attached garage that you want to tear down, prepare about $3,500 to $4,600.

Detached Garage

Detached Garage

With detached garages, demolition is more straightforward, as it can be treated as a stand-alone project. Hence, they tend to be cheaper to demolish than attached ones.

Detached garages have fewer connections with the main house, making the demolition process less complicated. Fewer connections lower the risk of causing damage to the main house, so the laborers don’t have to take protective measures for the house.

A 576 square feet or 24’ x 24’ detached garage will typically cost $2,300 to $3,450 to be torn down.

Cost to Tear Down Garage by Material

Cost to Tear Down Garage by Material
MaterialCost
Full Wood$2,500 to $3,500
Wood frame and drywall$1,000 to $2,000
Metal$2,000 to $3,000
Concrete$2,500 to $6,000
Brick$4,500 to $7,000

Wood

Wooden garages are relatively easy to tear down compared to other materials. They can be dismantled and disposed of more efficiently, so the demolition is less expensive than those made with more durable materials like concrete and brick.

Typically, if the whole garage is made fully of solid wood, it will cost more than garages with wooden frames and drywall. This is because solid wood is heavier than drywall, making it more time-consuming to tear down.

Tearing down fully wooden garages can cost about $2,500 to $3,500. In comparison, garages made of wooden frames and drywall will typically cost you $1,000 to $2,000. 

Metal

Metal garages are typically harder to tear down, but since they’re always mostly detached from the main house, they can be cheaper to demolish than wooden garages. They can also be cut into smaller sections, making them easier to dispose of.

To fully demolish a metal garage, it will usually cost you about $2,000 to $3,000, depending on the size of the garage and the contractor’s rate.

Concrete

Concrete garages are extremely durable and long-lasting. They’re made to withstand harsh weather conditions, like rain and snow, for a long time without much damage.

However, this durability also makes concrete garages challenging to tear down. The contractors will have to cut steel rebars and use specialized tools like jackhammers to fracture the concrete walls.

All the work needed to tear down your concrete garage will drive up the cost of demolition. Generally, it will cost you about $2,500 to $6,000, depending on the size of the garage, the steel bars used, and the contractor’s rate.

Brick

Brick garages are usually the most expensive to tear down, costing around $4,500 to $7,000. 

Bricks are thick and can be hard to dismantle and demolish. They usually take a long time to tear down, increasing the total cost of tearing down the garage.

Although concrete can be more labor-intensive to tear down, it’s generally easy to dispose of. Bricks are less recyclable and heavier than concrete, making them harder and more expensive to dispose of.

Factors That Can Affect the Cost of Garage Demolition

Size

Size
SizeCost to Tear Down
12’ x 20’$960 to $1,920
14’ x 24’$1,570 to $3,135
20’ x 20’$1,600 to $3,200
20’ x 44’$3,520 to $7,040
24’ x 24’$2,305 to $4,610
30’ x 20’$2,349 to $4,800
40’ x 20’$3,200 to $6,400

Size is one of the factors that can determine the amount of labor, resources, and time needed to tear down a garage. Hence, it has a significant influence on the overall cost of demolition.

Larger garages will typically take more time and effort to tear down since there are more materials to remove and more structural elements to disassemble. They also generate more waste and debris, so disposal will be much harder.

The usual cost range to tear down a one-car garage that’s 12’ x 20’ is $960 to $1,920, while a 24’ x 24’ two-car garage can cost $2,305 to $4,610. Some garages have space for storage, and they tend to be bigger and more expensive to tear down.

Type of Demolition

Type of Demolition
Type of DemolitionCost
Partial Demolition$1,150 to $3,500
Total Demolition$2,300 to $4,600
Deconstruction$3,500 to $7,000

Partial Demolition

Partial demolition is done when only a portion of the building needs to be removed, like when renovating or extending your garage space. Typically, only one wall and a portion of the roof are torn down during this type of demolition.

This is usually far cheaper than other types of demolition since it’s less labor-intensive and time-consuming. However, this can only be done when there’s a portion of the garage that’s still structurally sound.

To partially demolish a garage, you will need about $1,150 to $3,500, depending on how much portion of the building will be torn down.

Total Demolition

Total demolition is typically what you think of when you hear tearing down a garage. It involves removing the entire structure and leaving no part of the garage standing, so heavy machinery like excavators and bulldozers are often used.

Common reasons you will need total demolition include structural issues, risk of collapsing, pest infestation, and repurposing of garage space.

Total demolition can cost anywhere between $2,300 and $4,600, almost twice as much as partial demolition. 

Deconstruction

Deconstruction is a lot more complicated than partial and total demolition. It involves carefully dismantling the garage with the goal of reusing as many materials as possible.

This is a more environmentally friendly way of tearing down a garage since it minimizes waste. 

That said, it’s usually more expensive to do and can cost about $3,500 to $7,000. This is because it takes longer, and the workers have to be more careful with the demolition process.

Accessibility

Accessibility

Tearing down a garage will involve the use of various types of equipment, such as heavy machinery and cranes. Hence, the accessibility of the garage can have a huge impact on the contractor’s rate.

Contractors will likely charge more if the garage is hard to reach, as demolition will require more time and effort. Transportation of debris will also be more challenging for remote areas, so waste disposal costs will be higher.

If the garage can’t be reached with trucks, the workers will have to carry the equipment and materials from the site to the truck. This extra labor will also come with a premium.

Waste Disposal

Waste Disposal

Different disposal facilities charge varying fees for construction and demolition waste. Generally, the heavier your waste materials, the higher the disposal fee will be.

However, if you have some recyclable materials, some disposal facilities may give you a discount. If not, you can sell these recyclable materials and use the proceeds to pay for the disposal of non-recyclable waste.

Your total disposal fee will also be affected by the presence of hazardous materials, like asbestos. You’ll have to hire a professional asbestos removal company, which can add an additional $500 to $1,000 to the total cost of waste disposal.

Permits   

Permits

Some local authorities require permits for demolition projects, even if it’s just a garage. These permits come with associated fees, which can vary widely depending on the scale of the project.

Authorities may also require some revision to the demolition plans to ensure safety and environmental regulations. These revisions can potentially add to the overall demolition cost.

Permits can cost anywhere from $50 to $100, depending on the city, state, and country.

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