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Question DetailsAsked on 8/1/2013

How much should it cost to raise a flat roof?

We have a great room that has several supporting pillars that interrupt the area, and would like to have these removed as well as increase the height of the flat, 1970's era roof over its head from 8 or 9 foot to 10 or 11 foot depending on ductwork. The room size is approximately 30 by 20, with existing exterior walls at about 11 foot in height.

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1 Answer


Since you say the existing ceiling is at 8-9 feet but wall is 11 feet, something does not add up unless you are counting the parapet, which probably is not capable of being load-bearing. OK - you need to talk to an architect specializing in residential modifications and have him look at your situation.

Keep the two issues separate - getting rid of the columns, and raising the ceiling height.

The columns you might be able to get rid of by putting in architecturally exposed or hidden beams or trusses right below the ceiling - ballpark $5-10,000 unless there is another story underneath the great room. This is going to be costly because you talked of ductwork above the ceiling, so will probably require either an open-web steel truss system, or specially designed engineered joists with reinforced openings for the ducts to pass through, and then of course new ceiling below them.

Raising the roof on a flat roof is real iffy - can be done, but since the roofing membrane ters quite easy, usually cheaper to just rip it off and reroof, in which case (depending on architecture) you might consider the easier to waterproof sloped roof, maybe with a cathedral ceiling or mezzanine level. Probably range $15-30,000.

I would talk to an architect about options and costs - this is a major revision you are talking about, so if you are serious about it you might consider other remodel considerations at the same time.

I would also think carefully about how much this change is worth to you - look at whether doing some architectural concealment of the columns, adding a dividing wall incorporating them, etc might fill the bill for you.

Bear in mind also the overall house value - you do not want to put too much money into an older house unless you are planning on living there for a long time, especially as this remodel would not actually give you any increased living space, so unlikely to add to the resale value.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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