Whether you are a homebuyer who needs to estimate mortgage payments, an entrepreneur scouting for property, a real estate investor looking for a handout deal, or just a history buff wanting to build your own castle in the backyard, the cost of buying and maintaining houses (or castles) will always catch your attention.
While researching this topic, I was inspired to learn more about the history of houses and construction. After reading an article on Investopedia, I stumbled upon this graph which displayed the yearly cost of constructing a home from 1860 to 2009.
How much did it cost to build a house in 1980
In the early 1970s, the U.S. experienced an economic downturn and rising inflation. The 1973 oil crisis caused an energy crisis, caused by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) embargo against countries that supported Israel during the Yom Kippur War. This meant that oil prices suddenly increased dramatically and this increase was passed on to consumers. In 1973, the average cost of a new home in the United States was $23,000 and by 1974, it had risen to $30,000, according to The History Channel’s website.
By 1975, inflation had reached a rate of 10 percent and averaged more than 5 percent for most of the decade. The government responded by increasing interest rates which resulted in more expensive loans for home buyers.
In 1980, inflation had slowed down considerably but mortgage rates were still high at about 15 percent per year on average.
In the year 1970, the average cost of a 3-bedroom house was $22,900, which is equivalent to about $120,000 in 2018. The average three-bedroom home size has increased steadily over time and now averages between 1,900 and 2,000 square feet.
In 1970, mortgage interest rates were at their highest levels in 20 years. The average rate for a 30-year fixed loan was 7.4 percent and adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) were not yet available.
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insured loans with down payments as low as 3.5 percent. Today you’ll need 10 to 20 percent down depending on your credit score and other factors such as location.
The average cost to build a house in the U.S. is $235,000, according to the Census Bureau. But that doesn’t mean your house will cost that much. In fact, there are many variables that can impact the price of your home — location, size and design among them.
The following chart shows what it cost to build a new single family home in 1970 in cities across the United States:
The average cost of a new home in 1970 was $23,000. The average cost of a new home today is $283,100.
The average cost of a new home today is 5 times more than it was 40 years ago.
The average size of a new home today is 2,500 square feet, which is about the same size as a 1960s ranch-style house.
The average cost to build a house in the United States is $300,000.
The cost of building a new home can vary significantly depending on the size of the home, the location and whether it is built on a slab or with a basement. The average cost for new single-family homes in the U.S. was $327,900 in 2015 according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s annual survey of construction costs. This is up from $295,200 in 2014 and $273,000 in 2010.
The average cost of building an average size single-family home (2,400 square feet) was $240 per square foot (psf) in 2015 according to Home Construction Cost Data Institute (HCCDI). This compares to an average of $208 psf in 2010 and $181 psf in 2005.
How Much Did a 3 Bedroom House Cost in 1970?
In 1970, the average cost of a three-bedroom house was $16,400. That’s about $95,000 in 2019 dollars.
To get an accurate figure, we looked at the average price per square foot for homes with three bedrooms and found that it was $33.11. Then, we multiplied that by 1,872 square feet (the typical size of a three-bedroom home).
This calculation is based on data from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), which tracks prices across the country over time. The group also keeps track of regional differences in housing costs and has data on what different types of homes cost to build during specific years — including 1970 — so we can compare them with today’s average prices.
The median home price in 1970 was $16,900. In 2015 dollars, that’s $92,000.
Housing prices vary greatly depending on location and other factors. But the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Housing Survey provides an idea of what homes cost across the country in 1970:
The average house in the United States cost $16,900 that year. That’s equivalent to about $92,000 in 2015 dollars.
How much did a 3 bedroom house cost in 1970? The typical three-bedroom house had an average value of $15,500 in 1970 (about $86,500 today).
The typical cost to build a 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom single family home in 1970 was about $22,500. The average price per square foot for this type of home was $91.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is one of the most widely recognized price measures for tracking the price of a market basket of goods and services purchased by consumers. It is also known as the cost-of-living index because it measures the change in prices over time of all items in a given market basket that a typical consumer purchases over time. The CPI can be used to measure inflation or deflation, or as a deflator to convert nominal values into real values.
The average cost of a new house in 1970 was $15,200 (about $98,000 in today’s dollars). That’s according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
A few years later, the average cost had climbed to $21,300 (about $140,000 today).
The average size of a new home in 1970 was 1,800 square feet. By 1980, it had grown to 2,100 square feet.
In 1970, about 10 percent of new houses were more than 2,000 square feet and about 15 percent were between 1,200 and 1,500 square feet.
Construction costs vary widely based on the size of your home and where you live. The average cost to build a home in 2018 was $319,000. That’s up more than $50,000 from 2017 and nearly double what it cost to build a home in 2003.
The following is an estimate of how much it would cost to build a house in the U.S. in 2019:
Exterior Costs: $19,500 – $35,000
This includes framing and siding materials, windows and doors, exterior paint and landscaping materials such as plants and sod.
Interior Costs: $36,000 – $65,000
This includes kitchen cabinets and countertops, flooring (hardwood or laminate), lighting fixtures and paint for the walls and ceilings. Appliances like stoves or refrigerators are also included in this category if they’re provided by the builder or developer.
Building Permit Fees: $1,200 – $2,300