Interior Demolition Cost Breakdown for Appliance, Ceiling, Floor, and Wall Removal

Stripping your Calgary home’s interior is the first step towards turning your current space into your dream home. Hiring a qualified demolition professional in the area is the easiest way to ensure that the job is done right and on schedule. 

Of course, interior demolition is an involved process, and it’s something that most people outside of the industry are wholly unfamiliar with. How can you be sure that you’re hiring the right company for the job or getting the right price? 

Today, we’re going to cover the ins and outs of interior demolition, including: 

  • What is interior demolition? 
  • What influences the costs of an interior demolition project? 
  • What you can expect to pay for your demolition project 
  • Ways to reduce the costs of your project 

Now that you’re nearly ready to get started, read on as we learn everything you’ll need to become an interior demolition expert. 

What Is Interior Demolition? 

Interior demolition is the process of removing non-structural building elements from the structure of a home. Demolition can include everything from floors, ceilings, and walls to appliances, plumbing, and fixtures. 

How complex your project is will be the primary determiner of how much you can expect to spend on interior demolition. Taking down a few non-structural walls can be accomplished by a small crew in a single day, and it’s relatively inexpensive. 

Meanwhile, if you’re demoing a tiled bathroom with a heavy porcelain bathtub, you can expect your costs to grow. 

Factors Influencing the Costs of an Interior Demolition Project 

Every demolition project is unique, and the characteristics of that project play a significant role in determining how expensive it will be to complete your demolition. The primary factors that influence demolition costs are: 

  • Project size
  • Project location
  • Hazardous material abatement 

Project Size 

The size of your project is the most critical factor in determining your costs. Most contractors cost a project based on the square footage of the home. 

Demolition costs a set amount per square foot, and that dollar amount is multiplied by the project’s square footage to arrive at a price. 

While knowing your home’s square footage is the first step towards adequately estimating project costs, that number alone doesn’t tell the whole story of your potential costs. 

For example, let’s say you plan on demolishing the floors and ceilings of your bathroom. You may come to find that there are actually multiple layers of flooring that need to be removed or a second ceiling layer before you reach the rafters. 

In this example, your costs could be double or triple what you initially estimated, and many contractors charge for each layer of material being removed. 

Project Location

Another critical component is the location of your project. If you’re planning a first-floor demolition on a home that’s centrally located and accessible for your contractor to get to, then location will have little influence on your project costs. 

But, say you’re demolishing the interior on a 3rd-floor space that requires workers to cart garbage down two flights of stairs to remove. Or, say you live in a rural environment where it’s more difficult to transport building supplies and equipment. 

In these examples, you can expect a contractor to charge a premium based on how difficult it is to perform work at your location. 

Hazardous Material Abatement 

Another crucial aspect of your project that can profoundly impact your total costs is whether or not you’ll need your contractor to demolish hazardous materials. 

Hazardous materials include asbestos, lead, and mold. Chances are, at least one of these dangerous materials is present in your home, especially if it’s an older build. 

A qualified abatement contractor must perform hazardous material abatement. If you need hazardous material abatement, you can expect your costs to balloon significantly, as abatement is specialized work that requires a much greater level of care than your typical demolition. 

Depending on the material being removed, your contractor will have to set up containment on the area, demolish the materials following proper handling methods, and cart the debris away to specialized dump sites. 

Before you begin your demolition project, doing some selective exploratory demo is the easiest way to look for the presence of hazardous materials. This will give you have a better idea of whether they’ll affect your project costs. 

What You Can Expect to Pay For Your Interior Demolition 

There are plenty of factors influencing demolition costs, including the type of material you’re removing. While prices will vary depending on your location and the contractor pricing for your job, the tables below will provide a rough estimate of what you can expect your costs to be. 

Appliance Removal

Appliance removal is the most inexpensive facet of interior demolition, and it can be carried out by your contractor, a junk removal service, or on your own. 

It’s typically around $100 to remove a large appliance from your home, and costs drop significantly if you’re removing multiple appliances at once. 

Ceiling Demolition

Ceiling Type

Cost of Removal (per square foot)

Tongue & Groove

$3.50-4.50

Drop

$1.25-1.75

Popcorn

$1.50-2.50

ACT (acoustical)

$.13-.20

Beadboard

$5-5.75

Coffered

$20-30

Tray

$3-3.75

Drywall

$2.25-2.75

Flooring Demolition

Type of Flooring

Cost of Removal (per square foot)

Hardwood

$5-8

LVT/VCT/Linoleum 

$.25-.75

Concrete

$4-5

Carpet

$.75-1.25

Ceramic

$4-5.50

Wall Demolition

Type of Wall

Cost of Removal (per square foot)

Structural

$1.50-4

Non-structural 

$.75-1.25

Ways to Reduce Your Project Costs 

As you can see, interior demolition can be an expensive business. Fortunately, there are a few ways you can help reduce the costs of your project so you can stretch your money further as you plan the following stages of your remodel. 

Timing of Your Project 

Perhaps the easiest way to reduce your costs is to plan your project, so it occurs in the off-season. 

While demolition contractors work all year, business slows dramatically across the entire construction industry during the winter months, when the cold weather presents new challenges for construction projects. 

Most demolition contractors are hungry for work in the off-season, and scheduling your project for the winter is the perfect way to secure a favourable price for your project. 

Plus, with the business slowing in the off-season, you’ll be more likely to secure your first choice contractor for the job, as they should have more availability to accomplish your project. 

Be Sure to Recycle 

When pricing your job, speak with the contractor about how much recycling they do. Many building materials such as copper piping, cabinets, glass and ceramic tile, drywall, and much more are recyclable. 

Dumping recyclable materials is significantly cheaper than dumping everything in the garbage.

If your contractor recycles, this will reduce their cost when they dump the debris from your job. They’ll be able to pass along that savings to you in the form of lower project costs. 

Resell 

As the saying goes, one person’s trash is another person’s treasure, which holds true when it comes to home improvement. Some of the materials and fixtures you’ll be demolishing may still have resale value. 

Cabinets, appliances, and even tile or hardwood flooring in usable condition all hold resale value, and they can help offset the demolition costs. Look to places like Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, or local message boards to advertise what you have for sale. 

Expand the Scope of Your Project 

Interior demolition can be incredibly challenging because most people still live in their homes as demolition is being completed. Demolishing one small area at a time is usually the most comfortable way to attack your project, but it’s the least cost-effective. 

If you have additional projects planned that will require demolition, consider tackling them all at once. Larger projects are more attractive to contractors, and you’re more likely to secure a deal if you’re able to offer the contractor more areas to demo at once. 

Do It Yourself 

Interior demolition is incredibly hard and taxing work. But, it’s relatively easy to do, especially these days with resources like YouTube to help guide you through your project. 

Handling your demolition on your own effectively reduces your labor costs to $0, and you’ll only have to worry about fees for garbage carting and recycling, plus any tools you need to invest in to complete the job. 

If your project is pretty straightforward and doesn’t involve the removal of structural walls, plumbing components, or electrical components, it might be worth performing your own demolition. 

If your project is more involved, or if hazardous materials are present, the smartest thing to do is hire a licensed and insured contractor to carry out the job. 

Final Word 

Whether you’re undertaking a small demolition project, or stripping the entire interior of your home, consulting with a qualified demolition contractor is the first step towards realizing the home of your dreams. 

Contact the pros at Calgary Demolition Services today to discuss how we can transform the house you have today into your dream home of tomorrow.

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