Fireplaces can increase the value of your home by up to 12 percent, according to the National Center for Real Estate Research, and the manufacturers at Heat and Glo report that a natural gas fireplace costs less than 20 cents per hour to run. Benefits such as this come at a cost for installation. At the time of publication, construction estimate aggregator Homewyse was placing the average national cost to install a fireplace at $2,356, with most homeowners spending between $1,967 and $2,745. This estimate breaks down in numerous smaller parts, including the cost of the fireplace itself as well as the work required to install it.
The Main Attraction
According to Homewyse's figures, the unit cost of a mid-range fireplace unit was about $1,451 on the low end and $2,374 on the high end, as of 2014. This figure does not include the cost of tax or delivery. In a 2013 article, BobVila.com noted that more affordable units can come in at under $1,000 while premium models clock in at $3,000 or more. Portable electric fireplaces, which start at about $400 as per 2013 data from Coldwell Banker, offer the most affordable option and eliminate the need for expensive installation.
In addition to the fireplace, you'll need materials and supplies such as fasteners, fittings and mounting hardware. Homewyse estimated that the 2014 prices for these materials ranged from about $122 to $132. Installation may also call for the rental of specialty equipment, such as an electric planer, a miter saw, or pneumatic framing nailer, which -- according to the same source -- run anywhere from about $28 to $48.
Homewyse estimated that the average labor cost for installing a fireplace, as of 2012, ranged between $285 and $299 for about 5.6 hours of work. Construction aggregator site Redbeacon mirrors these figures, placing the average 2014 labor costs at $290, or $162 on the low end and $520 on the high end. The labor process typically entails prepping the work site, installing the fireplace, connecting it to a gas line -- in the case of gas fireplaces -- refinishing the surrounding area as needed, and cleaning up the space after installation. If a general contractor supervises the installation, your total costs may increase by about 12 to 19 percent.
More to Consider
Just as prices remain fairly consistent among gas and wood fireplace units, the type of fireplace you choose -- excepting electric models -- doesn't exert significant influence on the installation costs. Optional features do affect the overall cost. For instance, fireplace inserts -- which help improve the long-term energy efficiency of masonry fireplaces -- cost between $500 and $2,500, while artificial log sets for gas fireplaces run between $400 and $1,000, according to 2013 data from BobVila.com.
- Photo Credit Steve Gorton/Dorling Kindersley RF/Getty Images
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