Interior demolition cost per square foot

Interior demolition

When planning to renovate any part of your home, you may have to do an interior demolition. Interior demolition does not always mean completely tearing down a home; it includes removing walls or changing the kitchen cabinets. 

Interior demolition costs an average of $1000 to $5000 nationally. Expect to spend approximately $2500 for 500 sq. ft. of demolition space. Demolition costs can be as low as $300 for s single interior nonbearing wall but can also cost as high as $20,000 for more high-end services. 

Breakdown of costs

The cost of interior demolition varies for different home areas, depending on the required complexity and amount of work. Below are the average interior demolition costs of different home areas, including labor.

  • Interior wall: $0.30 -$6.40 per sq. ft
  • Room: $4 – $6 per sq. ft.
  • Ceiling: $4 – $6 per sq. ft.
  • Floor: $400 – $1100 per room 
  • Kitchen: $500 – $3000 per kitchen
  • Bathroom: $550 – $1500 per bathroom
  • Basement: $5000 – $25,000 per basement

Average interior demolition cost per square foot 

The cost per sq. ft. of an interior demo ranges from $2 to $10, depending on the materials to be demolished and removed. Labor per square foot accounts for $1 To $5 of the costs, the rest covers equipment, permits, dumping fees, recycling fees, and hauling. 

Interior demolition costs fluctuate depending on the complexity of the job. Interior demolition costs may be higher if the project includes demoing floors, bathtubs, or kitchen cabinets. Jobs require the contractor to be extra careful because pipes and pipes typically cost more. 

On the other hand, commercial interior demolition costs approximately $4 to $8 per square foot. Commercial interior demolition costs are higher than residential interior due to unique, specialized permits and fees caused by unique building codes and construction standards. Besides, they require more professional labor. 

Average demolition cost per room

Living room 

Demolishing a living room costs an average of $4 – $6 per sq. ft.  The costs will go up if fixtures and floors need to be removed in addition to the walls. The presence of fireplaces and hazardous substances like asbestos and lead paint will also drive the costs up.


It costs an average of $500 – $3000 to demo the kitchen of a small-sized home. Interior kitchen demolition costs fluctuate upwards or downwards depending on size, local regulations, materials to be removed, and other associated fees. Remodeling the kitchen requires another $13500 to $38000.

The work to be done may also drive up the costs. For instance, it costs more to demolish a kitchen when the workers are required to be extra careful not to damage pre-existing fixtures and materials. Other factors that may increase kitchen demolition costs are pipe removal, tile removal, and fixture removal.


Interior bathroom demolition costs an average of $550-$1,500, with prices as high as $2300. Bathroom demo jobs are similar to kitchen demo jobs because they may involve fixture removal. Additionally, such jobs may require an inspector to check for lead and asbestos, which increases costs. 

Bathroom demolition costs are higher if the demo workers are required to remove tiles, toilets, bathtubs, showers, sinks, and piping. However, some bathroom fixtures can be recycled or sold to scrap yards to offset some of the demolition costs. Once the demolition is complete, it may cost $6600 – $16500 to remodel a bathroom. 


Bedroom interior demolition costs $500 to $1200, depending on the room’s size and the job’s complexity. An additional $20000 is needed for remodeling, including inspection, design, labor, and construction. 


Basement demolition costs between $300 and $4000 for a small-sized home but may be between $5000 and $25000 for larger homes. Costs fluctuate depending on accessibility, size, and the number of materials to be removed. 

Basement demolition jobs typically cost more if they require the removal and replacement of concrete flooring. Demolition costs will also be higher if there is structural damage to repair and if the basement floor requires leveling. 

Sewage and mold issues will also drive basement demolition costs, as these require a professional inspection. Removing fixtures such as the HVAC will increase labor, disposal, and recycling costs. 

Interior basement demolition clears the way for a remodeling job which may then cost $12200 to $33000. These costs include demolition, flooring, insulation, carpeting, ceiling updating, and fixture placement. 

Interior wall demolition cost

Knocking down nonbearing interior walls costs an average of $0.30 to $6.40 per square foot, totaling about $1200 – $5000. Homeowners expect to pay approximately $2500 to demolish a 120 sq. ft loadbearing plaster wall (with little or no utility lines). 

The presence of electrical wiring and piping will drive costs up because the job will require more care and time. The final costs will depend on the material used to build the wall. 

Ceiling demolition cost

Removing a ceiling costs $2.38 per sq. ft., depending on the type of ceiling. This cost comes to about $375 – $896 for a 500-square-foot ceiling.

Drywall ceilings may cost $2.38 per sq. ft, while popcorn ceiling demolition costs $1.50 per sq. ft. Homeowners can expect to pay $1.50 per sq. ft. for drop ceilings, $5.50 per sq. ft. for beadboard ceilings, and $3 per sq. ft. for tray ceilings. 

Floor demolition cost

The average cost of floor demolition is $400 – $1100. Floor demolition entails removing the entire floor and is the first step to renovating a squeaky or rotten floor. Demolition costs will be higher if an entire floor is removed because of increased waste removal and labor costs. 


Cost of demolition per common interior


Cabinet demolition costs an average of $150 to $1000, depending on the condition of the cabinets. Homeowners can sell old cabinets to reduce the expense. 


Bath or shower demolition costs an average of $50 – $500 but may be higher if large fixtures and tiles are removed. Homeowners can make considerable savings if they reuse or sell bath fixtures in good condition. Contractors can remove such materials intact.


Homeowners can expect to spend $4000 to $6000 on fireplace demolition, depending on accessibility, size, and weight. An additional $500 is required to hire a structural engineer to approve fireplace demolition. 


Demolition costs for a single-window range from $50 to $100. The more the windows to be removed, the higher the dumping costs. Homeowners can save some money by recycling or selling old windows. 


It costs $300 to $4000 to do a complete staircase demolition. The cost of destroying and removing a staircase depends on accessibility, size, and materials. It is advisable to remove the staircase last when demolishing multiple areas in a home to maintain accessibility.

Cost of demolition per common materials


Removing tile can cost $2 – $5 per sq.ft. Tile demolition begins with grout removal before the team can pull up the tile pieces. Once the tiles are removed, the underlying mortar is removed. Demolition costs can increase if the contractors have to install a new subfloor or replace some portions of the subfloor. 

Dumping demolished tile can cost $300 to $1000, depending on its weight. Homeowners can cut costs by recycling which costs half as much as dumping.

Carpet and flooring

Removing carpeting can cost up to $1.50 per sq. ft., much lower than hardwood flooring removal, which costs $4 – $8 per sq. ft. on average. 


The average cost of concrete demolition is $1038 or $2 – $6 per sq. ft., depending on size, thickness, and type of reinforcement. You will pay more if the concrete is reinforced with steel bars and less for wire mesh-reinforced concrete. Homeowners can expect to spend anywhere from $250 to $3200 for professional concrete demolition. 


Destroying and removing drywall costs $0.30 to $0.45 per sq. ft., depending on size, weight, and type of insulation. A professional drywall demolition job can cost anywhere from $300 to $ 1000. Drywall demolition may require extra care depending on proximity to structural beams, doors, and windows, leading to increased costs. 

Turn off the power and prep the room by removing any mold to remove drywall. The demolition team will then use sledgehammers or hammers to make holes in the drywall before tearing it down.


On average, removing linoleum flooring costs $3 – $12 per sq. ft. Linoleum demolition is a meticulous process that involves cutting 6-inch to 12-inch strips without damaging the floor underneath. 

Once the top layer is stripped off, the remaining adhesive layer is removed. Linoleum demolition is costly because it requires time and precision. 


An abatement team must remove asbestos due to its hazardous nature, and prices can go as high as $120 per sq. ft. The cost of removing asbestos in a standard family home ranges from $15000 to $22000 but could be higher. Homeowners can expect to pay at least $2500. 

Gutting a house

Cost of completely gutting a house

Gutting a house to the studs is sometimes necessary to renovate a home, depending on the damage and potential changes to the design. The cost of completely stripping a house can fall between $2500 and $9800. Homeowners can expect to pay an average of $6150 for complete demolition. 

Gutting a house to the studs costs $2 – $7 per sq. ft, so the more significant the house, the higher the demolition costs. For example, a standard 1500 sq. ft. home will cost $3000 to $10500 to tear down.

Demolition cleanup costs

The average demolition cleanup costs for a small haul-away is $150 – $600, while that of a medium haul-away is $500 – $2000. The average minimum costs are $50 – $150 depending on the total amount of the debris to be moved and dumped and whether it is recyclable.

Hauling companies typically charge $175 – $575 per load of debris. The cost of renting and filling a dumpster ranges from $90 to $850, depending on the type of debris and the dumpster’s capacity. 

Removing debris and cleaning up the property can cost anywhere from $500 to $2000 for a single-family home and up to $3000 for a larger home. Homeowners expect to pay $800 to remove 12 cubic yards of construction debris. 

Recycling costs

The national average cost for recycling materials from demolition is $6 – $8, depending on the service provider. Recycling is important because it helps reduce the number of construction materials in landfills. Recycling can also help homeowners offset some demolition expenses. 

Other factors to consider

The price of doing an interior demolition will depend on different factors. Homeowners must consider these factors when planning major renovations requiring internal demolition.

  • Size: The size of the areas to be demolished significantly impacts the final demolition cost. Since demolition costs $2 – $7 per sq. ft, a bigger space will attract a higher cost. 
  • Budget: The amount a homeowner is willing to spend can influence demolition as different services have different prices. A budget of $2000 is enough to gut a bathroom completely, but for total demolition of a 1500-square-foot home, you may need at least $10000.
  • Age of the home: An older home will likely cost more to demolish due to hidden costs that may arise during the inspection. 
  • Complexity: Rooms, spaces, and materials that are more difficult to deal with will cost more to demolish. For instance, it costs more to do a demolition job in kitchens and bathrooms because these rooms typically have plumbing, heavy fixtures, and appliance hookups. 
  • Asbestos costs more to remove from a building because it is hazardous and requires a special team of professionals.


Renovating a home can be exciting, but homeowners must consider demolition costs while planning any major renovations. The cost of interior demolition varies depending on the size of the area, materials, and complexity of the job. The national average for interior demolition costs is $1000 – $5000, but this price can go up to several tens of thousands.