Basement underpinning is a complex construction project that involves lowering a basement and extending its vertical space.
Most Toronto homeowners use this solution to expand their spaces and include home offices for remote work, spare bedrooms, or even rental spaces for passive income generation. Similarly, businesses underpin their commercial spaces to increase storage, expand operations, or for rental purposes.
In either case, this process requires professional intervention from experienced engineers and technicians. These experts are equipped with the necessary tools, equipment, and resources to orchestrate this complex reconstruction project carefully. Hence, depending on the solution provider you opt for, it can be an expensive endeavour.
How Much Does Basement Underpinning Cost?
The first thing you should know is that there’s no foolproof method or formula to calculate the exact costs of basement underpinning. Most contractors typically analyze the property’s square footage and the basement’s linear footage to estimate the total cost based on the amount of work and time required.
Others break down the costs into smaller chunks based on different processes, such as:
- Inspection (Soil Composition Analysis)
- Drawings and Permits
- Site Preparation
- Wall Underpinning
- Basement Slab
- Crack Repairs
- Remediation, etc.
On average, homeowners and businesses in Toronto can expect to pay around $80-$350 per square foot for an underpinning project. However, rates can vary depending on the project scope.
In short, be ready to spend around $15,000 to $30,000 for a conventional underpinning project.
How Much Do Drawings and Permits Usually Cost?
Another cost you must account for is hiring a professional architect or structural engineer for the permit application process. These experts make the necessary drawings for the project and compile other documents required for approval from Toronto’s Building & Construction Authority.
The cost of these drawings and the overall process is usually around $2,500 to $3,500. However, this can easily go up to $4,500 or higher, depending on the project type.
Many renowned underpinning contractors in Toronto offer these services in-house and as part of their package so that you don’t need to hire an expert independently.
Variables Affecting Underpinning Cost in Toronto
There are a number of factors that determine the overall cost of a basement underpinning project in Toronto. Some of the most essential factors include:
1. Underpinning Company
Today, there are hundreds of basement underpinning solution providers in Ontario. However, each charge differently for their services based on their expertise, specialties, equipment quality, and other relevant factors.
2. Property Location
Location is often the first thing contractors look at when evaluating underpinning cost. It determines how much toiling and detailed work the project will require. The location will also determine the overall safety level and transportation/logistics costs associated with procuring necessary equipment and resources for the job.
3. Type of Soil
The next important factor affecting underpinning costs is the type and quality of the soil. Your property’s terrain geology will determine the overall complexity of the project. For instance, if the soil under your property is loose, it will require more concrete and other materials to maintain its structural integrity.
4. Basement Width and Depth
Your basement’s dimensions (length, width, and depth) will determine the underpinning rate per linear foot. Most renowned underpinning contractors in Toronto will base the majority of their costs solely on this factor, since it determines the types and amount of material required for the job.
No basement is one-size-fits-all in terms of accessibility. As a result, accessibility is another crucial factor that affects the overall cost. It determines how much effort labourers and technicians must put in to lower the basement.
6. Type of Basement Underpinning
The cost of underpinning a basement (excluding inspection, drawings, logistics, etc.) will also depend on the type of underpinning method your contractor employs. For instance, they could opt for the popular Mass Concrete Pour method, which involves digging holes, excavating excess soil, and filling the space with concrete and cement.
Alternatively, they could opt for the Beam Method, which involves digging at specific foundation points and adding a load-bearing beam to raise the basement height. Many contractors also opt for the Piling Method, especially in basements with foundation depth exceeding five meters.
7. Structural Material Type and Quantity
Finally, the cost of an underpinning project in Toronto will also depend on the type, quality, and quantity of structural material used, including concrete, cement, beams, etc. Contractors usually partner with different material providers based on their costs and their client’s preferences. Ideally, you should opt for an underpinning company using top-quality products.
Lowering your property’s basement level and extending its foundational walls for additional space is a costly endeavour due to the level of expertise and resources required.
However, these costs vary from city to city and company to company. When in doubt, opt for a renowned underpinning company in Toronto to ensure you get your money’s worth.
At MAGCOR, we offer cutting-edge basement underpinning solutions at highly competitive prices. Our team is equipped with the latest and most advanced tools and machinery to work quickly and efficiently with minimal waste and scope creeping.