How Much Does Home Insulation Cost?


Home insulation prices can vary substantially, but expect to pay between $4,000-$15,000 for an average-sized home. The price depends on several important factors, such as if the insulation is a remove-and-install or just an install job. If you look at it from an investment angle, home insulation that is installed properly can facilitate savings in energy costs over time and add value to your home.

One of the benefits of solar power is that you can theoretically save the environment as well as save money on your utility bills. You can discuss this double saving at dinner parties with your friends who also like to talk about their solar power and the money they save. What you might not discuss is that home insulation, done properly, can provide an even better ROI on the cost, which could help you if you decide to sell the home later. Home insulation prices can vary for several reasons, including the type of installation, the material, the labor, and of course, the area being insulated. Let’s dig into the basics below.

Home insulation average costs

Below is the average you pay for both materials and installation, assuming you live in a 2,000-square-foot home. This is on average, and the price can vary widely depending on what material you choose, your method of installation, and where you live. Different locations will have different price points for labor, too.

Price per square foot2,000-square-foot home
Average cost of materials$2.75$5,500
Average cost of labor$.75$1,500
Average cost per square foot to install$3.50$7,000

So, on average you might pay $7,000 but you could pay as little as $4,000 or as much as $15,000, depending on where you live and the materials you use.

What is home insulation and why is it important?

Home insulation refers to the material that controls the amount of heat flow occurring within a home. Home insulation is usually built into the walls of a property, in which the skeletal or wooden structure of the home is filled with a material that traps heat. The price for insulation can vary depending on a variety of factors.

Firstly, there are different types of materials you can use to insulate your home and different methods for installing these materials. For instance, blown-in insulation will have a different price point than foam board insulation, and cellulose will be different than fiberglass. Is the insulation getting put in for the first time on a new construction or is it replacing old insulation? The size of the home and the location in which you install the insulation can also affect the price. Lastly, where you live directly correlates to labor costs.

If you have good insulation, you can potentially save 15%-30% on your energy bill, which will allow the insulation to pay for itself over time while helping the environment.

New construction vs. insulation replacement

The first order of business when calculating price is the status of the property where you install the insulation. If it’s under construction, new insulation needs to be installed. If it’s an existing home, installation may need to be replaced. Installation removal can cost between $1-$3.50 per square foot.

2000-square-foot house

New build removal costs = $0

Existing removal costs = $4,000 (@$2 per square foot)

Material for insulation

Different insulation materials will have different price points. Here are some of the most commonly used varieties.


If you already have insulation in your home, chances are it is made of fiberglass. Fiberglass insulation can come in blankets, or it can be “loose-fill.” The thickness of fiberglass correlates to its ability to trap heat. In other words, the thicker the fiberglass, the warmer the house.

Price: $.50-$1.50 per square foot


Polystyrene can either come in foam boards or can be blown in using the “blow-in” method for home insulation. Polystyrene is an amazing electrical insulator and is resistant to chemicals such as different types of acids and bases.

Price: $1.50-$17.50 per square foot


Cellulose doesn’t come in slabs and is almost exclusively blown in or loose-filled. Cellulose does not have many air gaps as a material, and therefore, it excels at trapping heat. It’s also a pretty interesting material to hold in your hand.

Price: $.75-$2.50 per square foot


Rockwool is made of a collection of fibers that were previously furnace slag. The individual fibers on Rockwool are good at conducting and trapping heat. As Rockwool is made of previously recycled materials, it can also be considered environmentally friendly.

Price: $1.50-$15 per square foot

How to pay for new home insulation

Once you’ve calculated all the costs, you may want to use your home’s equity to pay for new insulation. Compare your options for a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC).

Types of installation

There are four major methods of home insulation that can vary in price.


Although not the cheapest option, blown-in insulation is a great method and the method of choice for many new-construction projects. A machine is used to blow in cellulose, fiberglass, or Rockwool and causes it to conform to a space and not lose efficiency because of spacial limitations.

Price: $1.75-$4 per square foot

Spray foam

Spray foam insulation is similar to blown-in insulation in that foam is sprayed inside the wall space and then expands to fit the cavity. There are two major types of spray foam: open-cell and closed-cell foam.

Price: $3.50-$8 per square foot

Blanket batts and rolls

This is the most common type of home insulation, and if you have to remove existing insulation, this is most likely what’s in your walls. Blanket batts and rolls are already formed and simply need to be placed in the wall with structural insulated panels. They are commonly used in between large walls surrounding the home. This is also the least expensive type of insulation, so blanket batts and rolls will be the choice for the thrifty insulator.

Price: $.75-$2.50 per square foot

Foam board

Just like blanket batts and rolls are pre-formed, so are the foam boards. Rigid foam board insulation is extremely efficient compared to other types of insulation. You can purchase foam boards with different levels of thickness that provide all types of energy efficiency.

Price: $2.50-$4 per square foot

Pro Tip

When installing home installation, costs can vary depending on the location within the home. For example, we use a 2,000-square-foot home, but the costs for insulating your garage will differ from your basement or your roof. Suppose you want to insulate a small portion of your home, such as attic insulation or roof insulation. In that case, it’s best to get quotes from different professionals to make sure that you get the best price.

Labor costs

As with most construction, home renovations, and home improvement projects, the labor comes in two forms — hire a professional or do-it-yourself/DIY. Here is what you need to consider.


Do-it-yourself home insulation installation is completely free in terms of labor costs. It only costs you your time. However, insulation is complicated to install and needs to be done properly. Thus, you might end up having to pay for insulation again if you do not install it properly. So while it’s free, it might not be worth it.

Cost for DIY: $0


Labor costs from the professionals will run about $.50-$3 per square foot to install. Much of this depends on where you live. Labor costs in San Francisco are going to be much higher than labor costs in West Virginia. However, it’s important that you opt for multiple quotes, as prices can vary between companies.

Cost for a professional: $.50-$3 per square foot

Home insulation and ROI

Depending on who you ask, home insulation can save you different amounts of money on your electric bill. On average, you can save about 15% on your energy bill, according to various sources. Other sources put this number closer to 30%. We will put the number at 20%, just to include some upside. Here is how many years you will need to live in the home until home insulation has paid for itself.

Yearly energy bill$5,000
Cost of home insulation$7,000
20% yearly savings$1,000
Years to break even7

You can see via the model above that if your energy bill is $5,000 annually and you save 15% every year on your energy because of home insulation, it will take you seven years until the home insulation has paid for itself.

Pro Tip

If you are considering replacing the insulation before you sell a home, you can show the buyer this model to explain the value of the new insulation.

Bad home insulation could cost you a sale

If you are thinking about selling your home, you might want to make sure that your home insulation was installed properly and that you have enough. Candice Krasovec, a licensed Realtor with more than 15 years of experience, has seen issues come up during title searches. “Home insulation is an easier remedy as it’s mostly only noticed in the attic and is quickly fixed for a low cost,” she says. “So insulation hasn’t stopped a sale, but it has been called out.”


Is insulating the house worth it?

Yes, insulating a house is worth it, particularly if it’s the house you plan to live in. Based on our model, after seven years, the insulation will pay for itself. However, this value can differ depending on the materials you use, such as batt insulation or fiberglass insulation.

How many years does insulation last in a house?

It can last up to 80-100 years in a perfect world. That being said, after 15-20 years, insulation should be reevaluated to see if it is still delivering results or if it needs to be replaced.

How can I insulate my house cheaply?

The easiest way to do this is to opt for the cheapest installation method and insulation material (blanket batts) and to do it yourself rather than paying for professional labor. Be wary, though, that in most cases, you get what you pay for, and insulating a home on the super cheap can come back to bite you later.

What happens if you don’t insulate your house?

You could be losing a lot of money on energy costs — as much as 15-30% of your bill. When you go to sell your house, potential buyers may notice this lack of insulation on the inspection report and take it into consideration.

Can I insulate my house myself?

Yes, there is a DIY option for insulating your home, just like any other home renovation. However, insulation can be tricky, and although DIY is an option, we advise that you look into hiring professionals to do the job.

Key takeaways

  • Home insulation prices can vary substantially but expect to pay between $4,000-$15,000 for an average-sized home.
  • The installation method, the material used, and labor costs are all factors that can substantially affect the price of insulating your home.
  • You can choose to install insulation yourself or you can hire a professional to install insulation. However, beware of DIY mistakes, as insulation is pretty important for your home and energy costs.
  • Based on average pricing, home insulation should pay for itself after around seven years. Thus, it has a decent ROI if you are looking at living in the home for that long.
View Article Sources
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