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Jason Pagliuca

by Jason Pagliuca Renovation Advisor | Reno-Assistance

Reno Blog / Home Addition / Cost of Adding a Second Story Addition | Toronto & Montreal

Cost of Adding a Second Story Addition | Toronto & Montreal

Cost and Price Home Addition

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In the wake of overvaluation in the Toronto property market, current homeowners are becoming more inclined to consider renovating their homes in lieu of purchasing elsewhere to meet their changing needs. When living space is a major requirement, a house extension or room addition is usually the go-to renovation project homeowners in this situation will undertake.

Depending on the location of your property within the major cities of Toronto or Montreal, you may be limited in terms of lateral living space, especially in the more metropolitan areas. If your exterior land is not adequate to extend laterally, and since encroaching on your neighbours would likely be frowned upon, extending vertically may be the only viable option. A second story addition can be a partial floor or entail a complete new floor with the same living area as your main floor.

partial two story house

Extension vs Second Story Addition

While an adjacent room addition on the ground floor isn’t without its challenges, the complexity of a second floor contributes to its generally higher cost. There are several options you can implement with a new floor; you may wish to simply add extra bedrooms but often another bathroom or two is ideal.

As part of building an additional floor, demolition and rebuilding of the existing roofing system is the first glaring difference that will entail additional work. The interruption to electrical systems, plumbing and HVAC throughout the walls and attic will also be more significant as the layout of these systems will have to be dramatically altered to accommodate the structural change. Stairs will also need to be added to connect to the two floors. The impact of this is a factor often overlooked. It will mean sacrificing some space on the main floor and is an additional cost compared to an extension.

second story staircase

Formulating a Budget

The two primary factors you need to consider when establishing a budget for your second story project are typical market costs for your location and the individual elements that will make up the addition floor e.g. amenities, number of rooms, HVAC, etc.

For comparison purposes, we can categorize three levels of project scope for a second story addition as:

Economy – This may consist of primarily extra bedrooms with standard power outlets, no HVAC, a modest-sized bathroom and budget fixtures and finishing.
Standard – From a functionality focus, an additional floor may consist of three bedrooms, an en-suite, a mid-large sized main bathroom and HVAC system installed throughout.
High-End – While the functional elements may consist of those similar to a standard addition, higher-end fixtures for the bathrooms, a luxury-style finishing and an entertainment balcony are typical features you could expect to include at this budget range.

second floor under construction

The table below shows typical per square foot prices you can expect to pay based on our customer’s projects in Toronto & Montreal. While these are average figures, an important factor affecting square foot pricing will be the overall size of the floor. A bigger space will tend to attract a lower per-square-foot price in line with the economies of scale.

  Economy Standard High-End
Toronto $170 / sq. ft. $250 / sq. ft. $300 / sq. ft.
Montreal $150 / sq. ft. $200 / sq. ft.

$250 / sq. ft.

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Choosing the Right Professionals

A general contractor who specializes in second story additions is generally the ideal expert you should work with to manage this type of project. As part of their role, on top of providing ideas in the initial planning stages, they will consult with their engineer and architect to put plans together and oversee all work done from roof lifting, framing, plumbing, HVAC and electrical down to the final finishing.

Reno-Assistance has built a network of general contractors who specialize in this type of project throughout Greater Toronto and province of Quebec. These contractors have had to meet our strict criteria in order to receive our 360° Verified stamp of approval.


You can give us a call on 1-888-670-9742 or submit your project online to speak to an advisor who will discuss your project with you and refer up to three 360° Verified contractors to provide competing quotes for your project to ensure you get the best price. Best of all, our service is FREE and there’s no obligation to go with any of the professionals we refer, so you have nothing to lose.

Happy renovations start here!

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Francis Guertin, Residential and Commercial Renovation Advisor

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