Framing Labor Quote

mrbtsweetAugust 17, 2006

I just talked with one of the guys that live in the same neighborhood as myself that does construction work. I am getting ready to GC my first and only house. He's going to charge me $6 sq. ft. to frame my house. Does this sound like a good price to you all? How much did you pay?

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This is a matter of local labor rates and varies widely. You do not indicate where you are so no one can give you any direct info related to your area.

here, it ranges from $6 to $9 a foot, depending on several variables. And of course, it is negotiable.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2006 at 10:30PM
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I'm sure everyone will tell you it depends on what part of the country you're building in!

I am building just outside of Birmingham, Alabama and I was quoted $5.50 sf. I got them to $5.00 if I bought the nails. I saved $300 that way - not much, but it all adds up!

    Bookmark   August 17, 2006 at 10:34PM
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That price would be impossible to find in my area. When we atarted building in 2000 the price was about $8-9 per SF (not including porches) with us supplying the nails. The $8 price was from DH's cousin and I know he was charging more than that at the time.

You should also realize that for cerain houses you will have to pay more because you need a framing crew with more experience. The more jogs, hip roofs, etc., you have the more you will have to pay not just due to the details but because you will need a more skilled crew. We had friends who went through three framing crews because they just couldn't handle the roof and some other details. Our friends originally thought they were getting a bargain, but how much of a bargain are you getting when you have delays and the inside of the house is getting buried in snow (or rain) while you try to find a framing crew that isn't a bunch of drunks and druggies that can't do math?

This isn't just directed at the OP (and I admit I am in a crabby mood today), but would people PLEASE put in their profile where they are? Price questions especially are completely dependent on geography, and several other questions would benefit from the information as well.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2006 at 11:04AM
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We paid $7/sf in Mississippi for framing. We are building a two story with a wrap around porch on a crawlspace, and so had the framer had additional floor joists and decking to do compared to building on a slab. At the time $7/sf was about mid-range. Before Katrina it was running about $5/sf. You need to inquire about what "framing" includes. For the price he quoted he installs all exterior windows/doors and does all the cornice work and window and door trim. When he finished it was ready for siding. Some framers around here charge less per sf but then charge extra for dormers, windows and door installation, etc.

It ended up being harder than he envisioned to frame up. Next time he said he's going to charge $1/sf and $5000/dormer. :)

    Bookmark   August 18, 2006 at 12:40PM
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For those that inquired, the $6 sq. ft. includes framing, decking the roof, installing windows, doors, and housewrap. Is this still a deal?

P.S. He said that he normally doesn't deck the roof, and that isn't the first time I heard someone say that. I figured if the framers don't usually deck the roof, then who does?

    Bookmark   August 18, 2006 at 2:25PM
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Here framers always deck the roof and cover it with felt paper. Most framers (but not all) include installing exterior siding. I am paying about $7 including all of the above.

...and I would like to second the statement that geographic location needs to be included in profiles.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2006 at 7:51PM
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I'm in Middle Tennessee and paid $5.50 per sq. ft. for everything under roof. Including decking on roof as well as paper on roof and hanging exterior windows and doors and house wrap. My house had 27 corners. A smaller house with a few corners can be done for $4.00 to $4.50 per ft.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2006 at 8:10PM
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$5 sq. ft. didn't include windows are roof. Just outside of N.O. where prices are high because of Katrina last year.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2006 at 11:36PM
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Sorry guys, I tried posting where I'm located and it is in southern louisiana, outside of New Orleans

    Bookmark   August 19, 2006 at 8:02AM
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It really does matter about the what and where. I am sure with the construction pressure from the recent storms you guys suffered, good framers are at a premium. The size and complexity of the home is critical as well. My GC got bids that ranged from 7.50 - 11 sf and we are in the southeast. And I am sure you are aware that less is not always better. A good framer can make you or break you. Second only to the foundation, the framing is the single most important part of your house. How well it is built, how quickly it is dried in... can all have a huge impact on costs down the road.

All in all, its impossible to say whether $6 is good or bad but it does not sound like highway robbery no matter what the circumstances.

BTW...I recommend that you let them furnish the nails. Nails can be quite expensive especially for these nail guns. If you are buying, they will shoot 'em up (so to speak), drop them, lose them, not pick them up...and they run 70-80 bucks a box. Just my opinion. Get them to throw in the nails as a bit of lagniappe!

Good luck!

    Bookmark   August 19, 2006 at 12:40PM
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It seems you folks down in the Gulf area are really getting sr....... these days after the storms!! Here, Charlotte, framers run on average $2.50-2.80/sf if you're using trusses. If all stick built it runs $4.00-4.75/sf. Includes roof sheathing, ext. doors and windows installed.

    Bookmark   August 20, 2006 at 12:12AM
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In the Toronto GTA, C$8 sq. ft. and up. Fascinating about the roof sheathing. Are they afraid of heights there? And carpenters that don't supply their own nails would be laughable here. Every region has its peculiarities, I guess.

Watch out for "extras". It may sound elementary. But put everything in writing attached or referenced to the approved building plans and dependent on satisfactory inspection by the relevant building inspector. And no up-front deposits for labour.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2006 at 1:30AM
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Here are some of the variables I found between framers:

Some include trim, some don't
Some include install of windows and/or doors, some don't
Some include Tyvek, some don't
Some include roof felt/ice and water shield, some don't
Some included porch, but only if the flooring was PT (we did mahogany). Also watch out that they use stainless fasteners on porch floors
I couldn't find anyone willing to start to frame before the backfill was done

Make sure they will come back and fix things the plumber/HVAC guy cuts up

Don't forget strapping of ceilings

    Bookmark   August 21, 2006 at 9:32AM
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Average here in Houston burbs is $4 sq ft for framing labor only. Materials have really dropped lately.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2006 at 2:09PM
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Well, I guess all of this pretty well makes everything clear as mud right? There really is no simple answer. There are a lot of moving pieces...where you are, supply and demand, what is included (big one) and quality and experience (another big one).

If robinnc is distinguishing stick built homes as separate then I can only gather it is from modular/completely pre-fab slab to roof. Completely modular/prefab at 2.50 -3.00 would seem reasonable. Comparing that to a stick built home in the same type house as you might find in modular, then $4-5 doesn't seem so bad either. Add just a bit of a custom flare to it (attractive roof pitches and gables, bay windows or elevated ceilings...) and it just goes up from there. Add on working in conditions prevelant after a Katrina (been there, done that, got the t-shirt)and life and labor come at a bit of a premium.

txgal06 puts another demension on things as well. New construction and existing home sales are slowing rapidly. This will put price pressures on everything construction related but likely not as much so as the high quality labor/subs. They tend to stay busy good times and bad (generally) and price their work for the quality they deliver and less on supply and demand. But they also normally will only work for GC's and only the good ones at that.

Good luck with your project and check around for prices, quality etc. It all makes a huge difference and there is no perfect answer. Also keep in mind that GC's (good ones) normally pay for themselves because they do keep the best subs and discounts locked up. And no, I am not a GC.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2006 at 6:56PM
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gap....sorry...shouldv'e been more specific. The truss is for the roof only instead of stick building the roof. It's stick built until the roof goes on. Sheathing goes over both. This can be complicated and very time consuming is why they charge less for this. A stick built roof can takes days to finish where a truss roof can be finished within hours. I also should have added that you will probably pay around $400-500 for the crane when using trusses.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2006 at 12:15AM
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I am curious about the posted sq foot framing costs.

For those of you who posted prices based on sq footage, in your area is that based upon liveable sq footage or total square footage, that is, you add garages, porches, decks to the liveable square footage. In my area of SoCal, if you're paying $8 a sq foot for framing a 4,000 sq foot house with a 1,000 sq ft garage and 1,000 sq feet of porch/deck you would pay $8 x 6000=$48K

    Bookmark   December 6, 2006 at 2:13PM
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does the framer typcally do the interior walls too for their price?

    Bookmark   December 7, 2006 at 10:37AM
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Just signed a framing contract today in Toronto! $8.50 sf, which includes the gross sq. footage; garage space is not counted. If I were the hard-bargaining sort and this were subdivision work, I'm sure it would drop 50¢+. No invoices, take another $1.25 off.

To me, quality above all, then speed and consistency are paramount. I've seen their work on two homes they've just completed in my own neighbourhood and I was impressed. Can't say the same about some of the others going up at the same time!

    Bookmark   December 8, 2006 at 12:45AM
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3.50 sq/ft. north texas. Includes exterior 2x6 walls, interior wall, exterior Marvin windows, exterior doors, roof decking, soffit/facia/cornice,house wrap, exterior siding, numerous interior 'eyebrow openings', 10' and 12' ceilings with vaulted ceiling in great room.

We're nearly through framing and couldn't be happier with crew

Footage calculated by slab size.

D**n gald I'm building in Texas!!!!!!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2006 at 9:39AM
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Where in North Texas are you building?

    Bookmark   December 11, 2006 at 11:46AM
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We may pay more for labour. But I filled the pickup today with C85¢ a litre mid range gas (US$2.80 per US gallon). Bet you can't say that. :-(

    Bookmark   December 11, 2006 at 6:27PM
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Tex4j--Oh I wish I could come close to that deal in So Cal. $6 sq ft for all under roof is an Ok deal here and that means the garage and porches get added into the living sq ft area, then multiplied by $6. And on a stucco house, it wouldn't include house wrap and certainly never siding.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2006 at 10:36PM
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We may pay more for labour. But I filled the pickup today with C85¢ a litre mid range gas (US$2.80 per US gallon). Bet you can't say that. :-(

You pay around $3.38 US for a gallon of gas??

Mid-range gas in my area is around $2.40/gallon and my area has some of the higher gas prices in the state of Florida.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2006 at 10:10AM
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mavs_fan...I'm building on 70 acres near Possum Kingdom Lake. which as you probably know is 60 miles west of DFW area. Moved from Flower Mound.

We fortunate to be building in North Texas where labor is reasonable. Building in this rural community has been wonderful because the network is so tight and folks know who does quality work.

Our goal is $85 square foot for house (already owned land)...House is being framed now. One story, marvin integrity windows, 2x6 exterior walls, standing seam metal roof, all stone exterior, 2 trane 16 seer units, pex plumbing, silestone, knotty alder cabinets and int. doors etc...We're on far.

Worthy...I paid 2.06 per gallon this morning but it's up from the 1.95/gallon I paid two weeks ago. Diesel's 2.59/gallon right now. Highway Robbery.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 11:55AM
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I did both conversions--currency and litres to US gallon--which comes out to US$2.80 a US gallon. And that's for some of the lowest prices in the country.

Taxes account for the difference--35% of pump price vs. 20% in the US.

All this works its way into building material costs. Lots of trucking for all those materials.

    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 1:40PM
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We are building about 80 miles NE of's a small world!

I know it seems unreal to people located in other areas of the country, but the $85/sq.ft. is a very realistic amount in rural areas around the DFW metroplex.

Best of luck and keep us posted on your progress.

Here is a link that might be useful: Our progress so far

    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 8:18PM
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anyone building in KY close to TN line -- price for framing? trying to put together a budget to build. we have house plan and trying to go from there

thank ogky

new to forum and love it so far.
thanks everyone for their knowledge

    Bookmark   February 13, 2007 at 9:37AM
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Mine costs $8 sq. ft. I don't know if that is a good price.

Here is a link that might be useful: Simpson Strong-Tie Wood Construction Connectors Catalog

    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 6:09AM
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Stop advertising your crappy connectors on our site, you idiot.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 8:18AM
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Thank you Stumpy ! I was thinking the same thing. 10 one line posts by this guy about his connectors in under 10 minutes ...

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    Bookmark   March 6, 2007 at 8:50AM
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$6.00 & climbing in Virginia this Spring.. gas is up to $2.65 for Regular.. looks like a $3.00 summer. Better grab the OSB while you can at under $5.00 now, Better grab the drywall at under $10 a sheet too. Spring storms may send these prices up, then where will we be ? Not looking for ward to another round of storms this year. This winter/spring is wacky enough..

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 12:19AM
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Just to be sure I am on the same page here.... are the prices being quoted in this thread for labor only or does it include the lumber, wrap, sheathing and other materials as mentioned? If you used a GC does he select the framer or is this something you did seperately?

    Bookmark   May 9, 2007 at 12:31PM
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We're doing a moderately complex Carmichael and Dame plan (Kempton Court). It's 3094 heated sq ft. 650 sq ft 3 Car Garage. Two two-story rooms. Included is all Framing, Decking, Tar-Paper and Wrap. Set Exterior Doors and Windows. 20,500.00. Engineered Floor Systems throughout 7270.00. Remaining Lumber Costs 17842.00. Charlotte, NC.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kempton Court

    Bookmark   May 14, 2007 at 10:21PM
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I was just talking with my GC yesterday about quotes. I am wishing to use light gauge steel, not wood for framing. He told me framing will probably be $70-75k for wood, $80-85k for steel. After reading this post, it seems my cost is way higher than everyone else! I am located in Phoenix, Az.

Some specifics on my house: It is approx 5000 sq ft, 2500 on each level. The exterior walls are going to be block, with the downstairs exterior walls needing to be furred out inside, but upstairs will not be. I believe the price incudes the wood trusses for the flat roof. Also, all the interior walls would need to be done.

It seems to me like the prices I am being told are quite high for the work I am getting done.

Any thoughts from anyone?


    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 7:08PM
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That would certainly be an absurd price here, unless the exterior block walls are in addition to the conventional wood framing. It's sometimes done here to provide a base for real stucco, not EIFS.

I'd sure long for those "high" gas prices I was grumbling about in December. Today, for 89 octane, I paid C$1.14 per litre, (US$3.88 per US gallon).

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 9:01PM
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I'm not downing GC's but without having a whole lot of experience with them and having heard and read from a lot of people who have I felt better about bidding out the work myself. I'm sure many GC's are making an honest living but at the end of the day there are too many places in the work to take a markup...profit, overhead, materials, labor........sure the subs can do the same but when you have 3 or 4 bids on each job it's pretty easy to see who is out to snow you and who is giving you an honest price for the work they are doing.....same with materials.....there are a couple of online resources that can be helpful. I started my estimates with Resi-Cost and built it out from there. While not 100% accurate they do tend to be "in the ballpark". Lastly, if you HAVE to use a GC and they give you a number your not comfortable with bid out the one job to a subcontractor or two. If they come in at 1/2 what the GC did bring the figure to him and open a discussion. Having said that $15/sq ft sounds about right for framing a 5000 sq ft home (assuming it's a turnkey job materials included).

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 10:35PM
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Thanks for the comments so far. Just to clarify a bit, I am doing cost plus, so I see every bid and we have 3 wood bids and 1 steel bid so far, with 2 more in the works. I totally trust my builder to get me the best price he can, although I have called subs myself and actually got about 4k knocked off the plumbing bid, which made me quite happy.

I guess I am just questioning the $15 a sq ft or so when it is just inside walls, furring out the downstairs (2500 sq ft) and installing the tji beams (joists?).

The exterior of the house will just have a thin layer of stucco applied and then paint, so nothing more outside on the block walls will be needed as far as framing.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 3:31PM
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I'm in a booming growth area and have secured framing labor @ 7.50/htd sq ft and materials (inc engineered floors) for $9. Framing is fairly complex. Your cost seems high unless there is a lot of steel. We have only one I-Beam in the second floor frame and it's costing us $500. Since you have a fairly candid relationship with your builder I would ask him to break it down to the finest detail and look for any aberrations it may include. When in doubt bid it out yourself...if you saved 4K on your plumbing I would be certain to bid this piece out as well....materials and labor.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 8:41PM
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I'm in Ottawa Canada, I got a quote of about $50K for:

"Installation of Framing, Roofing, Window and Exterior Doors including garage" This includes shingling the roof

The building is a 2500 sq foot bungalow with walk out, so back wall is framed (2x6 exterior). also 1000 sq ft garage and a 620 sq ft. cedar deck.

The home is a Viceroy kit with panelized option. I assume this means pre-assembled framed wall sections.

Anyone else think this is outrageous? comments please.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2008 at 7:24PM
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I just finished building my own home in NJ. My house is about 2500 sq.ft. plus a three-car attached garage with 500 sq.ft. of bonus space above it. I also have a covered wrap-around porch that is another 600 sq.ft. The roof pitches are 12/12 and 14/12 on the house/garage and 5/12 over the porch. My framer charged me $25,000 for labor. That included the framing, sheathing, and stair and window installation. It comes out to about $7.00 per sq.ft. I am just wondering how good of a price I paid. Thanks.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2008 at 9:52AM
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I think you got a pretty fair price though I don't know prices in nj. As a framer in utah I would have bid a little higher on something like that.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 2:44AM
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I would sincerely hope that labor prices have increased in the six years since the last post. Or the seven years since the first post.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2014 at 9:27AM
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I,m looking for a framer in Ms to frame a 3200 sq ft single story home with 847 sq ft garage , porch 400 sq ft , deck 286sq ft and patio 716 sq ft. Can anyone help me. I I'm building between Fayette and Natchez Ms .

    Bookmark   March 13, 2014 at 6:25PM
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Has anybody gotten a recent framing quote for their future home?

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 3:29PM
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I am feeling lucky after reading these rates! We are in San Antonio, Texas. We paid $3.50/sf in January. That includes windows, exterior doors, roof decking. Our lumber package including the flooring system for second floor was $26,000, Anderson 100 series windows were $8600 (we have 29 windows), and exterior doors were $3.250. Our house is approx 2500 on first floor and 600 on second.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 9:30AM
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I've received two quotes to frame 1,541 sqft of addition space (extending existing gables, 4:12 roof) and about 100 linear ft. of interior walls within existing home (no structural walls are being touched).

First quote was $115K, second was $92K. I'm 30 miles outside San Francisco, which I know is expensive...but ~$60 to $75 sqft seems like a really high premium? Waiting on bids from two more GC's, but I was expecting to pay closer to $20 to $25/sqft in this area.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 1:35AM
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bcs1974 - we are also in the sf bay area. ~$125k (so far) for framing for a rebuild-remodel - 5700sqft +/- house. I'd guess about 1500sqft "new" and most of the remainder of the interior walls replaced but shell retained. Note that this is *only* for the framing sub who handled the bulk of the work. Our GC has his own crew that does smaller touch ups, so I wouldn't say that our number is all-inclusive. The framing sub is back on site now doing siding/decks. I am sure that will be an additional expense. Lumber and nails were supplied separately by our GC and are not included in these #s.

It might be worth considering the total $/sqft of your project to put framing into perspective.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 2:44AM
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robin0919 that JUST for the labor framing and NO materials??

    Bookmark   July 30, 2014 at 10:21PM
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I am in New Mexico building a 400 sf cabin (straw bale) with a 200sf loft. Although it is straw bale filled, it needs to be framed, and openings for windows and doors, roof, etc. I am assuming the prices discussed for framing do not include price of lumber (I hope I am wrong!). Please advise current estimated labor costs for framing in NM and approximate lumber costs. Thank you!

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 6:33PM
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Our framing labor in the Houston area was $2.30/SF. This included all nails, framing, sheathing, moisture wrap, window installation for a 3,910 SF home. Did not include Roof decking.

Edit: this did not include the cost of lumber/materials.

1 Like    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 7:08PM
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Thank you lukehouston. That is good information to estimate my framing labor. Although I only have 400-600sf, I can assume the price per sq.ft. for labor to be comparable.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 7:45PM
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ralph, I wouldn't base your budget off mine. This topic asked what people paid for framing labor. I simply answered the question. Like someone else said, labor rates depend greatly on your area, and who you know (in my case). Please obtain your own bids and do not assume.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 8:29PM
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Will do! Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 8, 2015 at 9:05PM
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