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How Much Does It Cost to Build a Warehouse? Size, Design, and Other Factors

Building a warehouse costs about $35–$50 per square foot, or $350,000 to $500,000 for a 10,000-square-foot building on average. Costs will vary by size, materials, design, and customization.

reviewing costs of warehouse construction

Are you looking to purchase a large storage building? Consider building your own warehouse. For 10,000 square feet of space, a warehouse can cost anywhere from $350,000 to $500,000.

Warehouses are ideal for anyone needing a large and secure storage space for items like factory equipment or business products and merchandise. They present a great investment opportunity, especially now, with the rise of e-commerce and the growing demand for storage spaces.

The cost to build a warehouse from start to finish can vary depending on the design, materials, square footage needed, and other customizations.

In this guide, we’ll break down the typical costs of building a warehouse from the ground up.

Warehouse Cost by Square Feet

Steel is the most common building material for storage buildings. Factoring in the cost of steel, labor, customizations, and additional considerations, you can expect to pay closer to $35–$50 per square foot to build a warehouse. Here are a few warehouse costs based on size:

Unit SizeSquare FeetEst. Total Cost
*total costs include labor and customizations

Warehouse spaces, such as 60×80 metal buildings, are a good starting size for commercial buildings. Smaller sizes like 20×30 buildings are great storage additions to residential properties, where they can function as a mini-warehouse for your personal business as well as a workshop space or garage.

Size and Design Components

While base warehouse costs are calculated by their square footage, design necessities such as building permits and storage accommodations also add to the overall price.

For example, depending on how you intend to use the space, you may decide to have an office or restroom area in a metal building. Weather resistance and the location of your warehouse will also inform the roof styles and interior layouts you should consider in your budget.

Warehouse Cost Factors

Similar to garage building costs, you have to factor in common additions and features after the basic construction.

construction worker installing lights in a warehouse

The following features will contribute to the overall cost.


Choosing the best type of building material is important, as it can impact maintenance costs in the long run. Steel is typically the go-to material for warehouse buildings due to being energy-efficient and durable. While its price changes frequently, steel framing costs around $2–$4 per square foot.

Another material option is insulated concrete forms (ICF). Similar to steel, this material is durable and energy-efficient. Warehouses made of mixed materials, like those that include wood, usually cost more to build. 

Below are the most common roofing materials and their average costs per square foot: 

  • Metal roof: $10–$20 
  • Asphalt shingles: $4–$6
  • Concrete roof: $3–$5


A sturdy foundation for your warehouse building needs good elevation. Concrete is the most common foundation for warehouses, costing around $4–$8 per square foot. If your property also requires grading and leveling, these will be additional labor costs.

Labor Costs

Generally, labor costs an additional $4–$8 per square foot for constructing large buildings. To best estimate labor fees, they typically range from 20% to 40% of  the overall project. Fortunately, you can cut labor costs by choosing prefabricated steel buildings that require less time and materials.

Interior Finishing

It’s also necessary to have climate control and proper ventilation for warehouses, since some storage items or inventory must remain dry and cool for safety reasons. Adding insulation, HVAC installations, and electrical wiring can amount to about $2 per square foot or more. 


Don’t forget to consider window and door installations, building color preferences, shelving and racks, security equipment, and anything else you’d want for your warehouse. 

Operational Costs

In addition to the above factors, warehouses generally also have ongoing operation expenses. Below is helpful breakdown of the average costs:

  • Insurance: $70–$100/month
  • Maintenance: $2–$3/ sq.ft. per year
  • Security: $40–$120/month
  • Utilities: $2/ sq.ft. per year

For a 10,000 square-foot warehouse, the estimated annual cost for operations ranges  $41,320 to $52,640.

warehouse operations

How to Reduce Warehouse Construction Costs

Durable materials to build your warehouse, such as steel, have more damage resistance than other building materials and, therefore, lower maintenance needs. Here are a few more ways you can cut down on material and labor costs.

  1. Size the space: You don’t want to build bigger than needed. Analyze your current and projected storage needs to determine the ideal square footage.
  2. Maximize vertical space: Use high shelving and mezzanines to increase storage capacity. This way, you can avoid expansion costs.
  3. Prioritize energy efficiency: Use energy-efficient lighting, insulation, and automated systems. These solutions help save on utility costs in the long run.
  4. Consider prefabricated buildings: Explore pre-engineered metal buildings, which are much cheaper and faster to construct than traditional brick-and-mortar buildings.
  5. Negotiate with contractors: Get quotes from different service providers to compare the best pricing on materials and labor. Ask and take note of any complimentary offers, such as free shipping and installation.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you calculate warehouse construction costs?

To accurately calculate how much your warehouse will cost, you’ll need to focus on three primary factors: the square footage you need, the types of material you’ll use, and the estimated operating expenses, such as security, utilities, and maintenance.

What is the best material to build a warehouse?

As a low-maintenance and incredibly durable material, metal is a great option when building a warehouse. Not only does it withstand extreme weather conditions, but it’s rot and fire-resistant, protecting storage items inside. Last but not least, metal is recyclable, making it an eco-friendly option.

How long does it take to build a warehouse?

It can take three to four months to build a warehouse from start to completion. However, factors like labor availability and supply and demand of materials can extend the process.

How much does it cost to rent a warehouse?

As of 2023, the average cost of warehouse space is $8.22 per square foot, or $82,200 per month for a 10,000 square-foot building. Monthly renting or leasing rates for warehouses varies, depending on the location, intended use, and availability.

Choose Alan’s Factory Outlet to Build Your Next Warehouse

To save money and construction time, look no further than our quality steel buildings. Since our buildings are prefabricated, they use less materials and are cost-efficient. 

We use quality galvanized steel—a low-maintenance, energy-efficient material that is durable, recyclable, and good for the environment. Also, we’ll handle the shipping and installation for free!

Customize your new warehouse as you see fit using our 3D building tool below.

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Alan Bernau Jr

Alan Bernau Jr. is the founder and owner of Alan’s Factory Outlet. He has helped more than 75,000 homeowners design and install custom carports and garages over the last 20 years.

Alan Bernau Jr. is the founder and owner of Alan’s Factory Outlet. He has helped more than 75,000 homeowners design and install custom carports and garages over the last 20 years.

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