When people begin looking for a home to buy, there is an alternative to the traditional process of looking at homes with a realtor, purchasing one of the homes, then moving to the location of the home. Purchasing a home or receiving a home as a gift that is in danger of being demolished and moving the home to another location is what some people prefer to do. In lots of cases people can at least save money on the price they pay for the house because they may not pay anything at all.

Making the Decision to Move a House

Before making the decision to move a house, people should contact a professional house moving company to get an estimate on how much it will cost to move the house. The entire process can become pretty costly when all other expenses are factored in, but it could still be less than purchasing a new one.

Other Expenses Involved

In addition to actually moving the house, there are a numer of other expenses involved with relocating a house. These include the cost of the property that the house will be moved to, paying contractors to disconnect wiring and plumbing, the construction of a new foundation for the home once it gets to the new location, and any type of permits necessary. The house could possibly need renovations made to it to meet building code requirements where it is moved to. The house will need to be inspected as well.

Preparing the House for the Move

There are several things that need to be done when getting a house ready to be moved. Before any steps can be taken, the mortgage company or banking holding the mortgage for the house must approve of the move. Building permits will be needed for the current site and the new site of the house. The house may have to be inspected before it can even be moved. The route that the house will take to get from the current site to the new site will have to be approved by either the state or local department of transportation. The wiring and plumbing will have to be disconnected. The foundation supports and drywall will have to be removed before it is lifted off the ground.

How is the House Moved from Point A to Point B?

After everything has been disconnected and removed from the house, the moving company will have to dig up the ground around the house. Openings are cut into the foundation and steel beams are put into them to bear the weight of the house during the move. The house is lifted up with hydraulic jacks and beams are placed under them to pull the house onto dollies attached to the moving truck. From this point, the house begins its journey to the new site. Any obstacles along the route such as utility lines, mailboxes or trees will bring on extra expense, but should already be dealt with before the house starts moving.

How Much Will it Cost?

Most house moving companies want to physically inspect a house and the desired placement location before estimating the cost for them to move it. The cost for moving any size house can range between $12 and $16 per square foot, so obviously a smaller house with not a long distance to travel will be cheaper to move. The roads traveled during the move can add to the cost of the move. Narrow, curvy roads or those with sharp turns take more maneuvering than a straight path. A total cost of between $8,000 and $40,000 just to actually move the house from the original site to the new site can be considered to be on the cheaper end of the spectrum with costs for moving bigger houses reaching up to hundreds of thousands.

Which is Better?

Is it better to buy a new or even an older home and relocate oneself to the home or move a house somewhere else? If the house is a gift from someone and has sentimental value, if it is a historic home, or if one just hates to see a perfectly good house be torn down, he or she could look into moving the house to another location. They should just be prepared in many cases to spend quite a bit of money to save the house.


1. The Decision to Move a House. Setzer, Glenn. December 2, 2005.
2. How House Moving Works. Edmonds,Molly.


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