Many people interested in masonry construction are concerned price because they hear it’s expensive. Masonry materials cost more than other common building materials available for purchase because they are heavier, harder to source, and built to last. Siding, aluminum and other cheaper materials have become much more common in building construction to keep profits high and prices lower.

However, many homebuyers still aspire to owning a brick home. Everyone’s seen the beautiful brick colonials that dot the countryside. Turn the corner, though, and you’ll see most of them have panel siding and only a brick façade.

Still, masonry construction can be affordable but varies depending on the size of a job and what’s being built. Nothing beats the quality and feel of expert masonry construction. The look is timeless, and materials are more durable and easier to repair.

Here’s a breakdown of masonry construction costs.

Materials Matter

The kind of materials are chosen for masonry construction will have a significant impact on cost. Builders and homeowners should anticipate spending $7 to $12 for each square foot of common clay brick.

masonry construction costs

Moving into reclaimed Chicago brick and other higher-end materials will increase masonry construction costs. Natural stone that’s moved and then cut from larger pieces of stone cost more because they take more effort to produce.

Buying masonry materials is like purchasing precious gems in that quality, history and size all matter.

Masonry Wall

Brick walls look great as an accent wall inside of a house and are a popular choice among homeowners. It’s a beautiful way to create an elegant finish that’s long-lasting and easy to maintain.

Constructing a masonry wall inside can be a DIY project but hiring a professional will make it faster and it will likely look better. When it comes to masonry walls, most of the time cost is split between materials and labor.

Expect to pay around $800 to $1,000 for enough brick and mortar to make a 10 by 10-foot wall. Labor will be about the same, so total cost will be around $2,000.

The quality of brick and size of the wall can drive the price up. Exposed brick inside a home is a huge selling point, so homeowners can expect to get some of their money back should they ever sell.

Masonry Fireplace

A nice masonry fireplace is a great addition for any home. It becomes the centerpiece of a house where people gather to socialize or warm themselves around the fire during the wintertime.

Installing a masonry fireplace can be complex because there are many available styles and options. On average, though, homebuilders should expect a fireplace to cost on average $10,000 for a basic design and installation.

If the home is already built and a masonry fireplace is being installed from scratch, increase that price by a few thousand dollars because some demolition will be needed and a new foundation for the fireplace needs to be built.

The brick or stone hearth can vary widely in price depending on size, quality of stone and other factors. If homeowners opt for luxury builds, costs can easily more than double.

With fireplaces, the amount of brickwork required has the biggest impact on masonry construction costs. Homes that need full chimneys built will pay the highest cost.

One great thing about masonry fireplaces is that they generally add significant value to homes. A new fireplace can add as much as $15,000 in value. The increase in equity could help some homeowners who are still on the fence about what model fireplace to choose.

Brick Homes

masonry construction cost breakdown Brick homes, at least in the United States, aren’t what they once were. Even if someone wanted to build an all-brick home, the cost would be prohibitive. It can also be hard to find a mason capable of pulling it off.

Most brick homes are made of brick veneers with wooden framework to allow for gaps to fit insulation. The frames also add increased structural strength that traditional all-brick construction didn’t offer.

Most of the time, houses have a front veneer of brick and plane siding on the sides and back of the house. In general, wood-framed brick veneer homes cost around $140 per square foot. A solid masonry home would probably run at least double that. That’s why brick siding has become popular because it imitates masonry work for much less cost.

One of the main drawbacks of building brick homes is that build times are much longer. However, the more masonry elements used in the construction of a home contribute to it lasting longer and requiring less repairs.

Brick homes have maintained their appeal for decades and continue to be in high demand among homebuyers.

Labor

Companies will offer quotes on masonry labor costs according to dollars per square foot or by the hour. A mason usually charges between $20 to $50 per hour, or $7 to $10 per square foot.

The location of the build is the largest factor in determining labor as part of masonry construction costs. Contractors could charge less but will likely not have as extensive of experience in masonry construction.

That’s fine if the project is basic, however masons charge higher rates because they can handle more complex construction jobs.

The best way to keep a handle on masonry construction costs is to have a good idea about what needs to be done and contact several companies with positive track records.

The internet and business review applications have made it easy to see the quality of a company’s work, as well as how employees respond to customer disputes. Builders and homeowners should call some of the companies with high marks and interview them about work style, timelines, costs and other factors in masonry construction.

Capable masonry companies will be able to advise customers on material qualities and how they will affect cost. Masonry construction is more expensive than some other building material commonly seen in houses and other structures.

That’s because the materials and building process are more labor intensive. The cost often pays off in the end because high quality masonry is built to last and looks great.

04
Mar
2019

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