How Much Does It Cost To Wire or Rewire a House?
$1.56 – $3.75 Per SF ($1,611 – $7,801)
The cost to rewire a house runs from $1,500 to $3,000 for a small house, $3,500 to $8,000 for a medium-sized house, and $8,000 to $20,000 for a larger home; or $7.79 per linear foot of wall space plus the cost of the electrical panel at $1,200 to $2,500. Get free estimates from electricians near you.
Electrical Wiring Installation Cost
The cost to update electrical home wiring in a home ranges from $2,000 to $9,000 on average with most homeowners spending $2.65 per square foot. Electrical installation costs depend on the accessibility to the wiring, the electrician's hourly rates, and the cost of panels, wires, and other materials.
Small wiring jobs like installing an outlet cost as little as $125, whereas rewiring a larger home costs as much as $9,400. If it’s challenging to gain access to the wiring, it will cost more to replace. In any rewiring job, the drywall may need to be opened in any number of places, which will add to how much you will pay.
|National Average Cost||$2,115|
|Average Range||$790 to $3,617|
Electrical Wiring Cost Per Square Foot
Electrical wiring installation costs $2 to $4 per square foot on average. The wiring alone costs $6 to $8 per linear foot, while structured wiring and heavy-duty data cables — which handles communication and entertainment devices — add $2 per foot. Electrical installation is typically charged at one hour per 100 square feet. If electrical service is currently accessible, expect electricians to charge a set fee per opening of outlets, switches, and fixture boxes.
Table of Contents
- By Home Size
- By Bedrooms
- Upgrade Electrical Panel
- Opening Walls and Running Wires
- Adding Outlets and Switches
- Electrical Rough-In Cost
- Run Electric to Shed
- Add Electricity To Garage
- Wiring a Basement
- Commercial Electrical Work
Cost to Rewire a House
The cost to rewire a 1,000 sq. ft. home is $2,000 to $6,000, or about $2 to $4 per square foot. Rewiring a house over 2,500 sq. ft. that requires opening up the walls costs $12,000 to $20,000. Pricing depends on the home's size, the wiring accessibility, and if you’re upgrading the electrical panel.
|Rewiring a Basic 3-Bedroom Home
(Through attic, basement, or floor joists)
|$2,500 – $6,000|
|Installing Wiring by Running it Through Main Walls
(Opening walls, removing old wires, rewiring, and installing drywall)
|$6,000 – $10,000|
|Knob & Tube Wiring Removal||$4,000 – $6,500|
|Knob & Tube Wiring Removal Permit||$200 – $600|
Cost To Rewire a Home Per Square Foot
|Square Feet||Average Cost|
|1,000||$1,600 – $3,800|
|1,200||$1,900 – $4,500|
|1,500||$2,300 – $5,600|
|2,000||$3,200 – $7,600|
|2,500||$3,900 – $9,400|
|3,000||$4,800 – $11,400|
Rewiring involves removing as much as the outdated wiring as possible and installing wire contained in a non-metallic sheath. New wiring is safer, doesn't get hot when it is in contact with insulation, and will meet your electrical needs.
Cost to Rewire a House by Bedrooms
Rewiring one 120-square foot bedroom will cost about $190 if the installation has no unforeseen issues. The cost to rewire a 2 bedrooms house is approximately $380, 3 bedrooms run $570, and 4-bedrooms averages $950. Add another $1,100 to $2,500 if your electrical panel needs to be updated.
Cost To Upgrade Electrical Service Panel
The cost to upgrade an electrical service panel is $850 to $1,100 for 100-amps, and $1,300 to $1,600 for 200-amps. If a new box is needed, expect to spend $1,200 to $2,500 to install. A panel upgrade includes a new meter, service drop, disconnect, panel, wiring, piping, and a weather head.
|Install New 100-Amp Panel||$1,200 – $1,600|
|Install New 200-Amp Panel||$1,800 – $2,500|
|Upgrade Existing 100-Amp Panel||$850 – $1,100|
|Upgrade Existing 200-Amp Panel||$1,300 – $1,600|
|Upgrade Existing 400-Amp Panel||$1,900 – $3,600|
Upgrading your electrical service panel is usually required unless you live in a relatively new house. Today the majority of homes need a 200-amp electrical panel, and most older homes only have 60 amps delivered. You can find out how much power your home gets by looking at the main circuit breaker—it should have a data plate with the number of amps on it.
Opening Walls and Running Wires
Opening walls, removing the old wires, installing new wires, and closing the walls with new drywall costs $4,500 to $9,000 for a 1,200 square foot home. For a whole house over 2,500 square feet, pricing ranges from $12,000 to $20,000 with the opening of the walls.
Installing the wiring by running it through floor joists, attic, basement, or an accessible crawl space costs $3,000 to $5,000 on the same home. The easiest access for an electrician to work on your system is through a minimum height of 1.5 to 3 feet of attic or crawl space, from where they can drop wires up or down rather than have to drill holes into drywall.
The cost of opening and closing drywall should be included in the electrician’s quote. How much depends on how accessible the wiring is. Odd corners and hidden walls could cost more. There will need to be some drywall opening around every outlet and every light switch, as well as different key places in the wall.
Adding Outlets and Switches
The cost to install a new electrical circuit is $100 to $150 for one outlet or switch. Generally, the more outlets or switches that can be installed or added to a room, the better deal you can get. To meet code requirements, most areas require two or three outlets.
For a complete electrician prices list, check out our electrical work pricing guide.
Average Cost To Wire A New House
The average cost to wire a 1,000-square-foot house is $1,600 to $3,800, or about $2 to $4 per square foot. The size and layout of your home will determine your final cost. The more rooms you have, the most outlets and switches you will need to install to adhere to building code requirements.
It's cheaper to wire a new house than to rewire an existing home because the walls are open. Wires are strung through the studs without having to break open drywall, and outlet boxes and switch receptacles are easily attached to studs. In a rewiring situation, wires are not always easily accessible, and some houses don’t even have a minimum of 1.5 feet of height in the attic or crawlspace that could give an electrician easier access to existing fixture and outlet boxes.
Average Cost to Wire a House Per Square Foot
The average cost to wire a house is $1.56 to $3.75 per square foot with most homeowners spending roughly $2.65 per square foot. To get a more accurate estimate, calculate the linear feet of your walls, and multiply your answer by $7.79 per linear foot, which is the starting cost to wire the home.
- Home size / 4.2 = approximate linear feet of walls
- Linear feet x $7.79 = starting cost to wire a house
If your house has aluminum wiring, your electrician will add copper to extend that circuit to the fixtures and electrical outlets. Extending an aluminum circuit with copper wire means the wire must be crimped and covered with antioxidant grease to prevent future fires—aluminum corrodes over time at connection points, causing sparks which can cause fires. You would be wise to have your electrician examine all wired connection points in the house for corrosion, blackened connections, or melted insulation.
House Wiring Materials Price List
Basic materials such as outlet boxes and switch plates are usually included in your estimate, unless you’d rather buy custom-designed switch plates yourself. Most electrical jobs require necessary items like a circuit breaker box, outlets, switch plates, and lighting fixtures.
|100 Amp Service
Includes a meter socket, main switch, 1 GFCI and 5 single pole breakers in a 20-breaker space exterior panel box
|200 Amp Service
Includes a meter socket, main switch, 1 GFCI and 5 single pole breakers in a 20-breaker space exterior panel box
|Copper Wire (Most Circuits)||$0.30 – $0.66 per foot|
|Copper Wire (Large Appliances)||$0.49 – $0.99 per foot|
|Copper Wire (Electric Ranges)||$0.83 – $1.83 per foot|
|Data Communication Cable||$0.11 – $0.22 per foot|
|15-amp Outlets||$0.50 each|
|15 amp Outlets
Tamper resistant, USB charging
|Outlet Wall Plate Cover||$0.38 each|
|15-amp Switches||$0.50 each|
|Paddle Type Switch (Dimmable)||$28 each|
|Smart Light Dimmer Switch (Alexa Compatible)||$55 each|
Flush Mount 13”
Modern 3-light Pendant
16-light Crystal Chandelier
Powerful 72” 8-blade Fan with Remote Control
Labor Costs to Hook Up Electricity
An electrician charges from $40–$99 per hour, and it can take from 40 to 60 minutes to install 100 linear feet of wiring. The labor charge depends on the electrician’s level of experience—apprentice, journeyman, or master—and the amount of time they’ve spent in their current level. It can also be affected by their level of education. If you’ve hired a contractor to oversee all the work you’re doing on the house, s/he will usually mark up the subcontractor’s price by 15%–20%.
New Construction Electrical Costs
New construction electrical costs range from $2 to $4 per square foot. Electrical work for new construction is typically charged at one hour per 100 square feet which is $45 to $100 per hour not including materials, parts, call-out fees, or repairs from opening up walls.
The average cost to wire a 1,600 sq. ft new home construction with three bedrooms is $2,500 to $4,000. The more fixtures you have in your home, the more it will cost. Each fixture (outlets, lighting fixture, appliance, 220-volt outlet, etc.) costs $100 to $150 to install.
The cost will also vary depending on the type of wire you decide to use, and if you select high-end fixtures or smart appliances. If you use copper wire, it will cost considerably more than if you use aluminum wire. The average cost to wire a new house is usually less than it costs to replace or install wiring in an older home, the drywall is not yet in place, and the electrician has easy access for installation.
Electrical Rough-In Cost
The electrical rough-in cost is $3 to $8 per square foot, or about $3,000 to $8,000 for a 1,000-square-foot house. Pricing depends mainly on the power the house needs and how many outlets and lighting fixtures are planned for the house. The more outlets and fixtures there are, the more it will cost.
Electrical rough-in takes place after installing the framing, and it just means the wires have been pulled through the studs and have been inserted into the boxes where outlets and lighting switches will go. No drywall has been put up, so there are no switch plates or lighting installed.
Cost To Run Electric to Shed
Running electric to a shed will cost about $900. Sheds are separate buildings and will need the electrical line brought to it, which accounts for most of the cost. A shed won’t need much more than an outlet or two and an overhead light, unless you have bigger plans for your power tools.
Cost To Add Electricity To Garage
The cost of wiring a garage can run from $1,000 to $4,000+. Prices can vary considerably depending on whether your garage is detached or attached. If you plan on working in your garage with power tools, you’ll want to install at least a 100-amp subpanel, but if your plan is simply to park in the garage, 60 amps will do the job.
Add Electric To Attached Garage
Wiring your attached garage will run about $1,000 to $2,500 depending on the size, your power needs, and how many outlets will be installed.
Cost To Run Electric To Detached Garage
The cost to run electric to a detached garage is about $4,000. This is more than what it costs to wire an attached garage because you will have to pull a main line from the house to the garage and then wire all the lighting and outlets.
Wiring a Basement Cost
The electrical wiring costs to finish a basement is about $800 to $1,500 for a 1,000-square-foot area. The lower price being for a basement as one large space without inner walls. Pricing depends on the number of outlets, the size of the electrical subpanel, and what the purpose of the basement is. If you’re building a lavish multimedia entertainment room, you will need to install more outlets than if it will just become a storage area.
Commercial Electrical Work Costs
The commercial electrical wiring cost ranges from $5 to $12 per square foot, or about 10%–30% higher than residential at electrical work for wire, cables, fixtures, and electrical panels. Electrical work on commercial properties is more expensive because the power needs are higher in commercial buildings using three-phase power (448 volts) vs. a home’s single-phase power (240 volts), and highly insulated wiring is run through conduits for greater protection. The electrical system in a commercial property is a lot more complicated too, especially if the electrician needs to bring the wiring up many floors.
Cost to Replace Knob and Tube Wiring
The cost to replace knob and tube wiring is $1.56 to $3.75 per square foot or roughly $2.65 per square foot. One of the reasons you should replace knob and tube wiring is that it has no ground wire, and many insurance companies will refuse to cover the home for electrical fires because of it. This wire was initially installed back in the 1880s.
Knob and Tube Wiring Removal Cost
Knob and tube wiring removal costs $4,500 to $6,000 on average. Before work can begin, a knob and tube wiring removal permit must be pulled for a typical cost of $200 to $500.
Technically, knob and tube wiring doesn’t need to be removed from your home; just make sure it’s disconnected before new wiring is installed. However, the InterNACHI (International Association of Certified Home Inspectors) says to “have the system inspected by a qualified electrician. Only an expert can confirm that the system was installed and modified correctly.” They will also know the requirements of local building codes re its disconnection or removal.
Electrical Wiring Cost Factors
Aside from basic rewiring costs, the following will factor into your final cost to rewire a house:
- Labor costs in your area
- The new level of power needed to be brought to and into the house
- The ease or difficulty of access to fixture and switch boxes
- The type of wire used
- The cost of patching or replacing drywall
- The number of outlets and fixtures
- Permits and Inspections needed
- Setup and cleanup costs
Electrical Permits & Inspections
Most electrical work that replaces the wire in walls or at electrical connection boxes requires a permit to adhere to local codes at an average cost of $250 to $500. The cost of a permit varies greatly from state to state and even from county to county. The best thing is to call your local building department to find out if you need a permit and how much it costs. The good thing about having a permit is the accompanying inspection, which will tell you if the job was done correctly and if it’s safe. Electrical wiring that has been improperly installed is very dangerous and a fire hazard.
Preparation for Installation
The best thing you can do before the electrician arrives is to ensure accessibility. Move furniture and pictures that hang on the wall. Put a plastic tarp down to protect the carpet and hardwood floors. Clear the area of knick-knacks and other personal belongings so the electrician can do their job.
There will always be clean up after a job is completed. Sometimes the electrician does this but not always. Ask if cleanup is included in the estimate you received.
Common Electrical Codes
The National Electric Code (NEC) is the nationally recognized code responsible for safe electrical practices. When your completed permitted job is inspected, the inspector will be looking for compliance with the NEC guidelines adopted in your state. Licensed and experienced electricians stay up-to-date with all code requirements.
- Wiring must be grounded.
- Splices are the worst code violation because they are the most dangerous. If a splice absolutely must happen, an electrician needs to do it, and the splice should be isolated from other wiring with a junction box.
- Overlamping – Putting a higher wattage bulb into a socket can cause overheating and potentially a fire. Use the appropriate wattage bulb for the socket.
- Uncovered junction boxes – It’s possible to receive shocks from that splice in the junction box. Covering it only costs a few dollars.
- Outlets – Code requires an outlet to be placed within 4 feet of a doorway and then every 12 feet after that. If you live in an older home that does not meet this code requirement, no one will make you upgrade, but overloading circuits could cause a fire. It will likely cost $100 to install a new outlet on the first floor and $200 for outlets on the second floor.
- GFCIs – Current code requires an outlet to be a GFCI outlet if it is within 4 feet of a water source, such as a sink or bathtub. It is not required to bring your home up to code if it is not at this time. You can replace standard outlets with GFCI outlets yourself for about $12.
How Do You Know If You Need to Rewire?
Replacing old wiring might not be a necessity, but houses are good at letting homeowners know when something’s wrong. You can schedule a home inspection with a local electrical company to find out if you need to rewire. The added benefit of this is you’ll get a list every electrical issue that needs repair, even if your wiring is good enough for now. Watch for the following signs that you need to rewire:
- A burning smell or sizzling sounds.
- Discoloration around outlets or fixtures.
- The outlet or light switch feels warm.
- Circuit breakers trip often.
- Lights are flickering.
- Plugs are very loose in the outlets.
- The power supply is inadequate for 240-volt appliances.
- Your home is older than 40 years.
- You get small electrical shocks when you plug something in.
- You have far too many extension cords and extra power strips.
Call An Electrician Immediately If
- You’ve noticed a burning odor.
- A buzzing sound is coming from your wiring or outlets.
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