After having a pre-purchase building inspection completed in Perth WA, people will often ask for help in estimating the value of their established home, for home insurance purposes.

What the insurance form is probably asking of you is:  What is the replacement cost of the home?

There are a few different ways to calculate the cost to replace a home. All calculation methods have different results and varying degrees of accuracy.

Three commonly used methods are:

  1. Online home insurance calculators.
  2. Quantity Surveyor.
  3. Own calculations with the help of a builder.

Three calculators were used on a place in Scarborough, Perth WA, and surprisingly all calculations were found to be very similar. The reason for the similar results, is the data calculators they use. Most calculators estimate the replacement cost of your home using information supplied by Cordell, Australia’s leading provider of building cost information.

The online calculators will prompt you for some basic information. i.e. size of home, number of bedrooms etc.

Below are 3 easy to use calculators.

If possible, choose a calculator where you feed in your specific address, not just a postcode. Check whether the calculator includes the cost of demolition and architects’ fees.

Another reasonably accurate, but expensive way to calculate the cost to rebuild is using the services of a qualified Quantity Surveyor.

They will be able to measure your home accurately, and apply current construction rates and other costs specific to your property, providing you with the most precise estimate.

The final way to calculate the cost to rebuild your home would be with a new home builder, and adding in a few more allowances. Note: This method is probably the least accurate.

The following home builders have display home pricing which includes square meter sizes, and specifications or finishes:

To use this method, select a home of similar size and specification. You may also need to add in some or all of the following allowances: Demolition, an allowance for BAL requirements (Bush Fire Attack Level) if close to bushland, retaining, architect design and approval fees. Also consider an allowance for accommodation whilst your new home is being built.

Best of luck, and if you need any further information there is a great article on the Choice website located here.