When looking at the costs associated with building a home, you might experience quite a bit of sticker shock. According to Forbes, as of July 2021, the average cost to build a home was about $300,000, without factoring in the cost of a lot. Homes built in Indiana come in below that average at $219,300. These costs can seem completely overwhelming, especially if you haven’t determined what your home will look like inside and outside. Use this guide to learn what some of the most expensive aspects are when it comes to building a home.


The land where your home will sit takes up a substantial part of your home’s cost, ranging between $3,000 to $150,000 per lot, according to Home Advisor. The high price doesn’t just take into account the land itself, but also it includes the price for surveying, inspecting, and possibly adding electrical and plumbing hook-ups. This cost might be lumped into the sale price. Choosing a lot takes a lot of careful thought, so you might consider asking for professional help when making the decision.

Selecting a lot in a desirable but less expensive area than others might end up costing just as much when you take into account the price for pouring a foundation. Even if you consider land that’s not in a pricey area, you might have additional costs to consider, such as adding driveways or road connections.


Image via Flickr by ArmchairBuilder.com

Perhaps the most expensive part when it comes to building a home is the framing, which consists of wooden beams that make up the home’s skeleton. Forbes states that high-quality lumber averages about $33,000 for a home in the United States. Metal stud framing systems begin around $20,000.

Often, the process of framing a home can be more expensive than the actual construction itself because of the sheer amount of skilled labor and materials needed to complete the task. The main factor that affects the framing cost depends on the type of material used. Most builders use timbers to form the frame. Also, the size of the framing depends on how big you want your home.

Try to avoid cutting corners when it comes to framing costs. Some builders might use shipping containers to construct homes, which can lower the cost, but this option is usually unavailable for larger homes. Plus, these containers are inflexible.

Plumbing and HVAC Systems

When you’re having a home built, every part of the home must be installed. You might not take into consideration HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning), plumbing, and electrical systems, but it’s important to factor all those in. Note that the larger the home, the higher the cost to install these systems. Typically, you can’t do anything major to lower the cost of your electrical system, but you can make decisions to lower the costs of your plumbing and HVAC systems.

Forbes states the costs to install an HVAC system ranges from about $7,000 to $12,500. The cost includes installing ductwork, a furnace, and central air conditioning. Keep in mind that if you select a cheaper HVAC system, you might end up having to replace it sooner.

Plumbing allows you to access the water inside the home for bathing, cleaning, and drinking. The costs to outfit a home with plumbing depend mainly on the type of materials used. Copper pipes are the most expensive option and will cost about $9,000 for a 1,500-square-foot home. To cut costs, consider using chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC), polyvinyl chloride (PVC), or cross-linked polyethylene (PEX).

Smart building design can limit the redundancy found in plumbing, and you might be able to choose the type of piping used. Also, if the plumbing isn’t installed well, you might experience leaks that can cost quite a bit to repair. Selecting low-quality plumbing is less likely to cost you until the house is much older, as long as the plumbing is of decent quality.

Electrical wiring costs are around $8,000 or about $4 per square foot. The total price depends on the complexity of the home’s layout, the type of wiring materials used, and the number of outlets/switches needed. You could also consider installing solar panels to help you recoup some of the costs associated with electrical systems installation.

Interior Finishes

Interior finishes can take up a bulk of the budget, and you might end up spending between $42,000 to $167,000. If you’re someone who wants high-end appliances, finishes, fixtures, and other features, you might find that these finishes are one of your more expensive costs. You’ll find the following included in this category:

  • Mirrors.
  • Countertops.
  • Interior paint.
  • Cabinets.
  • Flooring.
  • Drywall.
  • Doors.
  • Trim.
  • Lighting.
  • Fireplace.

Thankfully, when it comes to interior finishes, this is one category that you have complete control of and can focus on what’s important to you. If you care about stainless steel appliances in the kitchen, you can opt to include those while spending less on other areas, such as having laminate countertops instead of granite. Finding the perfect balance between your budget and aesthetic can be accomplished by working with a trusted home designer.

Exterior Finishes

You don’t want to just focus on your new home’s interior; the exterior deserves just as much attention. Exterior siding, roofing, and landscaping costs can add up. Expect to spend around $12 per square foot on siding, which can range from affordable vinyl or high-end natural stone. When it comes to roofs, most builders install affordable asphalt shingles with costs ranging between $5,550 to $11,500. The total price depends mainly on the type of roof you select.

Converting your home from a construction site to a manicured home requires the installation of plants, trees, and sod. You might end up spending about $2,000 to transform the landscaping and enhance your home’s curb appeal.

Contact Steiner Homes Today!

The process of building a home can feel overwhelming, especially if you’re working with a company that cares more about its profit than what you want. Don’t let that happen to you. Steiner Homes is a family business that wants to help you build the home of your dreams at a cost you can afford. We serve the Northwest Indiana community including Crown Point, Cedar Lake, Dyer, Merrillville, and more, and our team is ready to build you your dream home! Contact us online or give us a call today and let us help you construct your custom home in Northwest Indiana.