Do you want to learn how much an average house weighs and how to calculate the weight of your home?
Houses come in a variety of sizes and styles that make them unique and special to you, and these differences also affect the weight of the house.
We will cover how much the average house weighs as well as how to calculate the weight of your own home.
Common Terms And Measurements Explained
Let’s clarify some common terms and measurements we will use throughout this guide.
- Dead Loads: Permanent items in your home intended to last, such as construction materials and plumbing.
- Live Loads: Content in your home that isn’t permanent or semi-permanent, such as the people and furniture inside.
- Pounds Per Square Foot (PSF): How much a particular item weighs per square foot.
- Ton: Measurement equaling 2,000 pounds.
How Much Does An Average House Weigh?
The “average” house weighs between 80,000 and 160,000 pounds (not counting the foundation or contents).
When we refer to an “average” house, we refer to a house built on-site (not a modular home).
This broad answer may not provide the necessary detail for your purposes, especially since each house has personalized touches that will play a role in the final, more specific answer to the question of how much your house weighs.
How Much Does The Average Two-Story House Weigh?
For a quick answer based on the number of floors of the house in question, you can use the following general estimates common in the construction industry.
(The results include the weight of the foundation but not the contents of the home.)
- Single-story: 200 pounds per square foot
- Two-story: 275 pounds per square foot
- Three-story: 350 pounds per square foot
Homes with additional stories require a stronger (and heavier) foundation, leading to the additional weight per floor.
Let’s Do the Math!
Using the estimates above, we will calculate the weight of a 1,000, 2,500, 5,000, and 10,000-square-foot home with each number of stories.
One-Story House Weight Estimates:
- A 1,000-square-foot house with one floor weighs about 200,000 lbs. or 100 tons.
- A 2,500-square-foot house with one floor weighs about 500,000 lbs. or 250 tons.
- A 5,000-square-foot house with one floor weighs about 1,000,000 lbs. or 500 tons.
- A 10,000-square-foot house with one floor weighs about 2,000,000 lbs. or 1,000 tons.
Two-Story House Weight Estimates:
- A 1,000-square-foot house with two stories weighs about 275,000 lbs. or 137.5 tons.
- A 2,500-square-foot house with two stories weighs about 687,500 lbs. or 343.75 tons.
- A 5,000-square-foot house with two stories weighs about 1,375,000 lbs. or 687.5 tons.
- A 10,000-square-foot house with two stories weighs about 2,750,000 lbs. or 1,375 tons.
Three-Story House Weight Estimates:
- A 1,000-square-foot house with three levels weighs 275,000 lbs. or 137.5 tons.
- A 2,500-square-foot house with three levels weighs about 687,500 lbs. or 343.75 tons.
- A 5,000-square-foot house with three levels weighs about 1,875,000 lbs. or 937.5 tons.
- A 10,000-square-foot house with three levels weighs about 3,750,000 lbs. or 1,875 tons.
How Do I Calculate My Home’s Square Footage?
To use the estimates above to calculate the weight of your own home, you need to know the square footage of your house.
If you can’t find the square footage on your home’s blueprints, insurance documents, or public records, you can calculate the square footage yourself using the following steps.
Step One: Draw Your Home’s Floor Plan
Start by sketching out your home’s floor plan room by room.
In your sketch, don’t forget to include closets, pantries, and other nooks.
Step Two: Measure Each Room
You will measure the length and width of each room.
Multiply the values together to determine the square footage of the room.
For a room with a closet, you will measure the main room and the closet separately.
You will add the square footage of both areas together to get the total square footage of the room.
Step Three: Add Up Measurements
Once you measure every room, you will add the square footage of all rooms together to get the total square footage of your home.
Pro Tip: If you have a perfectly rectangular home, you can save some time by simply calculating the length and width of the whole house rather than measuring each room separately.
How Do I Calculate The Weight Of My House?
Unfortunately, it would be impossible to place a house on a scale to get the answer you need.
You also may require more detail than the previously described method can provide.
Luckily, you can calculate the weight of your house using a simple six-step formula.
Step One: Determine Purpose And Process
In most cases, you will need to know the weight of your home for a construction project, whether that is new construction or repairs to the foundation.
Clarify what items you need to weigh.
You will always calculate the dead load, but you may find situations where you don’t need to include certain factors into the total weight of your home.
Some common items you may or may not include in the calculations include the following:
- Weight of foundation
- Live loads (contents of the home)
- Off-site locations (garage, guest house)
Step Two: Gather Information
Gather as many measurements and details about your home as possible from professional documents, such as your home’s blueprint.
The blueprints should include details about the measurements of each room, the building materials used, and the length of the building materials.
You can also sometimes find this information in public records or insurance documents.
Step Three: Measure Unknown Values
You will likely run into a component or room where you don’t have all of the necessary detail.
You will need to use the tape measure to get the measurements of these items.
Step Four: Calculate Weight Of Each Component
Now, you need to calculate the weight of each component in your home using the estimates we provided.
You will need to calculate the total weights of the following components:
- Exterior Siding
- Interior Walls
(We will cover the average weight of the most common building materials in the next section.)
In addition to these major components, you will also need to consider the weight of the hardware, fixtures, and plumbing in your home.
You may also need to know about the weight of snow or ice on your roof for certain construction projects.
Step Five: Add Weight Of Components Together
Now, you need to add your totals together to get your final result regarding the weight of your home.
Always double-check your work to ensure you can duplicate your findings.
Step Six: Weigh The Contents Of The Home
Finally, you may need to weigh the live loads or contents of the home.
To estimate the weight of the contents of your home, you multiply the number of full-size rooms in the home by 1,000 pounds.
For a home with six full-size rooms, you will estimate the weight of the contents at 6,000 pounds.
What are full-size rooms?
Full-size rooms include the large rooms in your home such as the living room, kitchen, and bedrooms.
What if I have heavy items in my house?
You will add weight to your estimate if you have especially heavy items in your home, such as a pool table, library, or piano (each of which can weigh well over 1,000 pounds).
For a helpful and more detailed tool to calculate the weight of the contents in your home, use the following weight estimator that many movers use.
What Is the Weight Of Common Building Materials?
Different building materials weigh more or less than others, and the materials you choose will play a large role in how much your house weighs.
Of course, you need to consider not only the weight of the different materials but the benefits you get from the weight.
We will cover the weight of some of the most common building materials for the different components of your home.
Almost all houses use concrete foundations.
However, not all concrete weighs the same.
A solid slab of concrete weighs 150 pounds per cubic foot.
Broken concrete weighs 75 pounds per cubic foot.
Beams help support your home above the foundation.
There are three types of beams in the typical home:
- Simply supported beams.
- Fixed beams.
- Overhanging beams.
Beams typically weigh six to 12 pounds per foot.
However, heavier beams used to support heavy building materials can weigh up to 50 pounds per square foot.
3. Exterior Siding
The siding of your home provides protection as well as an aesthetic appeal.
You have a lot of options to choose from, including these three most popular exterior siding materials:
- Vinyl: 0.5 lbs. per sq. ft.
- Wood: 3.5 lbs. per sq. ft.
- Brick: 40 lbs. per sq. ft.
4. Interior Walls
The interior walls of your home may use a variety of different materials.
The weights of common interior wall materials are as follows:
- Plywood (½” 4 x 8 sheet): 50 lbs.
- Drywall (½” 4 x 8 sheet): 57 lbs.
Keep in mind that you will have both load bearing and partition walls.
Load bearing walls, as the name implies, are designed to help support the weight of your home, and they will contain a higher concentration of studs, slightly adding to the overall weight.
The flooring not only affects the weight of your home but also the noise levels.
These are the weights of the most common flooring materials:
- Linoleum: 1.5 PSF
- Carpet: 2 PSF
- Hardwood: 4 PSF
- Ceramic: 16 PSF
Your roof protects your home from the elements, adds aesthetic appeal, and impacts your home’s efficiency levels.
See the following weights of the most common roofing materials:
- Asphalt Shingles: 2 PSF
- Wood Shingles: 3 PSF
- Concrete Tile: 12 PSF
- Clay Tile: 19 PSF
Heavy Duty Construction Vs Lightweight Home
Now that you’ve used your home’s contents to calculate the weight, what do you do with that information?
Ideally, your home weighs the perfect amount for your needs.
However, what if it doesn’t?
We will cover what you need to know if your home falls on the lighter end of the spectrum or the higher end of the spectrum.
A lightweight house uses lightweight construction materials and sticks to a simple one-story or two-story floor plan.
What are the benefits of lightweight construction?
You can find plenty of benefits of lightweight construction.
Some of the main benefits include the fact that contractors can store and transport these materials much more easily.
This makes them less expensive to purchase and install in most cases.
Additionally, lightweight materials provide more benefits to the environment for the homeowner who wants to ensure they can recycle the building materials they use in their home.
What are the disadvantages of lightweight construction?
Unfortunately, lightweight construction comes with its disadvantages as well.
Lightweight homes may experience more noise.
They can also find themselves more vulnerable to extreme weather conditions, such as hurricanes and hailstorms.
Finally, lightweight homes usually don’t match the efficiency levels of heavy duty homes.
You can tell that your home requires additional weight if you notice:
- Low efficiency levels and high energy bills.
- High noise levels.
- Swinging in the wind.
- Damage to home after high winds and heavy storms.
Heavy Duty Construction
A heavy home uses heavy-duty construction materials and may incorporate more complex floor plans with several stories.
What are the benefits of heavy-duty construction?
Heavy duty construction will ensure that your home can stand up to the elements.
You will not need to go through as many repairs after high winds and hailstorms.
You also keep the noise out and increase efficiency.
What are the disadvantages of heavy-duty construction?
Heavy duty building materials tend to cost more to purchase and install.
Furthermore, they probably won’t offer the same efficiency levels.
However, the main problem comes from the potential danger of damage to the foundation of your home.
Your foundation can only support so much weight.
If you put too much of a strain on it, you will notice damage to the foundation.
When you damage the foundation of your home, it can lead to safety concerns and very expensive repairs that must receive attention before the problem gets worse.
Signs of damage to your foundation include the following:
- Cracks (both exterior and interior)
- Uneven floors
- Morphed walls
- Rotten wood
Frequently Asked Questions About The Weight Of A House
1. How Much Does A Mobile Home Weigh?
Mobile homes weigh 45 to 50 lbs. per square foot, making them a much more lightweight option than traditional homes.
2. What Factors Determine The Weight Of A House?
A number of different factors determine the weight of your home:
- Size of home
- Building materials
- Floor plan
- Number of stories
3. Why Do I Need To Know The Weight Of My House?
In most cases, people need to know the weight of a house to ensure it has a proper foundation to support construction.
You may also need to know the weight of your home if you need foundation repair.
4. What Common Building Materials Weigh The Most And The Least?
Lightweight asphalt, wood, and steel tend to weigh the least. Brick and concrete weigh the most.