The typical price range for installing an egress window is approximately $2,445 to $5,265, with a national average of $3,705. You can install a basic above-ground egress window starting at $880, while below-ground windows could cost up to $8,340. The egress window type, the installed location, and permit costs are some factors that could affect the overall cost of installation.
When you wish to convert your basement into a bedroom, installing an egress window is required by the International Residential Code (IRC) to provide individuals with an escape route in the form of an emergency exit. This type of window can easily be opened from the inside without the use of special tools or keys.
Read more about:
- Average Costs
- What Is an Egress Window?
- Cost Estimator by Number of Windows
- Other Factors That Affect Cost
- Related Services
- Cost by Location
Average Egress Window Installation Costs
|National Average Cost||$3,705|
|Typical Price Range||$2,445 – $5,265|
|Extreme Low-End Cost||$880|
|Extreme High-End Cost||$8,340|
The national average costs given above include the purchased window, the cost of labor ranging from $40 to $80 per hour, and the cost of installation materials, which ranges from $100 to $700.
Outside the typical price range of $2,445 to $5,265, homeowners can pay about $880 for small projects, such as installing a basic egress window in an above-ground family room. But if you wish to install a custom egress window in the basement, expect to pay a high-end price of up to $8,340 or more. For comparison, the cost of a regular window replacement (not egress) is around $670.
You can save money and pay closer to the low-end cost by:
- Installing the cheapest or most common type of window
- Requesting at least 3 estimates from professionals in your area and comparing them to find the lowest rates
- Negotiating to get the best deal possible
- Avoiding extras and add-ons
What can drive your costs closer to the high end are add-ons such as weatherstripping, custom windows instead of prefabricated, or expensive frame materials.
What is an Egress Window?
Egress windows are essentially emergency exit windows that are large enough to help individuals escape fire or other life-threatening situations. The term “egress” can be defined as a path or opening for going out, highlighting the main role of this type of window.
For homeowners who wish to convert their basement into a bedroom or living room, installing an egress window becomes a legal obligation rather than an optional upgrade. In short, an egress window must be installed in each of the home’s rooms that people sleep in or use regularly.
International Residential Code Section R310 states that egress windows must meet the following standards:
- Minimum opening width of 20 inches
- Minimum opening height of 24 inches
- Minimum net clear opening of 5.7 square feet
- Bottom of the clear opening must be within 44 inches of the floor
Egress Window Installation Cost Estimator by Number of Windows
Given the unique function of egress windows, their size has more to do with building codes than a homeowner’s personal desire. The cost of the installation process is influenced more by the type of window rather than the size.
However, the size of the room may play a role in the total cost. If a large basement has more than one habitable room, the law states that more than one egress window should be installed. In other words, the number of egress windows should match the number of rooms.
The following table lists the average costs for above-ground installations, such as living rooms, and below-ground installations, which are more common for egress windows.
|Project Size||Average Cost (above-ground)||Average Cost (below-ground)|
|1 window (1 room)||$800 – $2,500||$2,480 – $4,980|
|2 windows (2 rooms)||$1,600 – $5,000||$4,960 – $9,960|
|3 windows (3 rooms)||$2,400 – $7,500||$7,440 – $14,940|
Other Factors That Affect Cost
There are several factors that affect the total installation cost of egress windows. They include the type of window, such as casement or single-hung, above- or below-ground installation, and the glass type.
- Type of Window
- Glass Type
- Frame Material
- Property Type
- Window Well Installation and Excavation
Type of Window
The type of window is arguably one of the most important factors in determining the total cost of installing egress windows. Casement windows are among the most popular choices, and they typically cost between $190 and $600.
Casement windows are among the most popular choices for homeowners, given their affordable prices and the fact that they fulfill the building code requirements. This type of window is hinged on one side and can easily open outwards to provide individuals with a quick emergency escape. They typically cost between $190 and $600.
If you are on a tight budget, single-hung windows are the way to go. Being the least expensive type, they are commonly installed in large living spaces and will cost between $100 and $400. The handle to open the window is usually located on the lower part of the frame, making it easy for children to use when needed.
The major difference between single- and double-hung windows is that both the top and bottom panes (also called sashes) can be moved in a double-hung window. This will allow you to create an opening on either the top or bottom of the window’s frame. To meet the legal requirements, this type of window must be at least 24 inches tall and 34 inches wide. Double-hung windows will cost you between $230 and $530.
In-swing windows are the most expensive type of window for several reasons. They are more aesthetically pleasing, more energy efficient, and provide more protection from the elements. In-swing windows are difficult to open from the outside, providing homeowners with an extra sense of security. They can be installed for $350 to $700.
This window type acts similarly to a sliding door, opening from side to side. This also prevents you from worrying about any clearance for the window opening, since it requires no hinges to be installed. Sliding windows are a decent option for below-ground installations but can also be used in partial and above-ground basements. This type of window costs between $150 and $680 on average.
In most cases, the cost of above-ground installation is lower than below-ground. Installing an egress window in the living room will cost you anywhere from $900 to $2,250 for a prefabricated model. The cost is significantly higher in basements, with prices varying between $2,500 and $5,200.
|Window Location||Average Cost|
|Living Room||$900 – $2,250|
|Attic||$900 – $3,000|
|Bedroom||$900 – $3,000|
|Basement||$2,500 – $5,200|
|Skylight||$1,200 – $4,000|
Installing egress windows in the basement can improve your home’s value and provide additional space to accommodate your guests or relatives in a new basement bedroom.
The type of glass also plays an important role in the total installation cost. Expensive glass types will increase the total cost of installing an egress window, while cheaper types can help you save money and stick to your budget. Starting with the low-end option, single-pane glass costs between $125 and $400.
|Glass Type||Average Cost|
|Single-Pane||$125 – $400|
|Double-Pane||$175 – $575|
|Triple-Pane||$375 – $850|
|Low-E||$318 – $770|
|Laminated||$280 – $625|
|Tempered||$185 – $675|
|Frosted||$340 – $775|
To save energy and keep your home insulated, double-pane glass is the best way to go. It is almost as affordable as the single-pane, ranging from $175 to $575. Adding this type of glass with single-hung or casement windows makes for a budget-friendly combination.
Triple-pane glass provides an overall better performance with noise-reduction capabilities. Windows with this extra pane of glass will cost you anywhere from $375 to $850.
While more expensive usually means better performance and quality, it is not necessarily the case when it comes to window frames. Vinyl frames have taken the number one spot as the most popular choice of frame material due to their affordability, energy efficiency, and low maintenance requirements.
|Frame Material||Average Cost|
|Vinyl||$210 – $645|
|Aluminum||$250 – $910|
|Fiberglass||$365 – $1,115|
|Steel||$400 – $600|
|Wood||$430 – $1,225|
|Composite||$440 – $1,295|
Vinyl frames typically range from $210 to $645 depending on the window size. But if you’re not seeking longevity or durability, you can go for wood frames that offer a more unique look to your windows. This frame type will cost you anywhere from $430 to $1,225.
Some old or small homes may require the professional installer to resize the window opening or even cut a new one, which will obviously add to the total cost of the installation process. Resizing typically costs between $150 and $200, while cutting a new opening will cost around $700 on average.
Window Well Installation and Excavation
Window wells are necessary for homes with basement windows. The installer will need to excavate the ground to install the well, which provides the individual with enough space to escape in case of emergency.
Window Well Installation
Window well installation costs $405 to $1,490, with an average price of $765. Depending on the size of the project, you may end up paying as little as $325 or as high as $5,600. They are required with below-grade windows to help occupants escape the residence in case of emergencies.
|Range||$405 – $1,490|
Window Well Cover Installation
It is recommended to install a cover for the window well, with prices varying between $270 and $1,105. Window well covers can improve basement insulation and prevent leaks after a rainstorm.
|Range||$270 – $1,105|
Excavation Labor Costs
A complete excavation done by professionals can cost between $1,500 and $3,000, adding to the overall cost of below-ground egress installation.
This type of project also requires land surveyors, electricians, and structural engineers. They guarantee the safety of your home and avoid electrical, water, and sewer system mishaps. The costs in the table below are for the entire project.
Before you set up a budget for installing an egress window, especially below-ground, you may need to consider the cost of some related services, such as:
Waterproofing your basement can add value to your home, reduce foundation cracks, and prevent water from seeping into your home. With an egress window in the basement, waterproofing can help you enjoy the additional living space with peace of mind.
|Range||$2,365 – $7,035|
Depending on the size of the basement and the number of rooms, waterproofing costs $4,985 on average but can go as low as $730.
Basement French Drain
French drain installation can bring similar benefits to basement waterproofing, though it may require more time and labor. Expect to pay about $40 to $100 per linear foot for an interior system. Here are some of the ways a french drain can benefit your basement and entire home:
- Maintain structural integrity by directing water away from the building’s foundation
- Prevent water build-up and moisture damage
- Increase the value of your home
|Interior French Drain Size||Average Overall Cost|
|50 linear feet||$2,000 – $5,000|
|100 linear feet||$4,000 – $10,000|
|200 linear feet||$8,000 – $20,000|
By reducing air leaks through windows, weatherstripping can improve the energy efficiency of your home and help reduce both heating and cooling costs. It is relatively easy to install and costs between $150 and $500 on average.
Cost of Installing an Egress Window by Location
When it comes to installing any type of window, labor and material costs are generally higher in urban areas than in less populated or rural areas. Excavation and window well installation costs are higher in areas close to the water level and lower in hilly areas that can easily be excavated.
FAQ About Egress Windows
To install an egress window legally, you are required to obtain an excavation and building permit. The permits cost anything from $50 to $200, depending on where you live and the extent of the work (window size, type of home, etc). When it comes to this type of installation, you cannot DIY. The only exception is window replacement, provided you have prior experience.
The value egress windows add depends on your house’s type and geographic location. Installing an egress window in the below-ground basement will allow you to market the space as an additional room legally, adding substantial value to your home.
There are several ways to prevent damage and maintain your window’s functionality:
• Remove debris from window wells to prevent clogging.
• Check the perimeter of your window for an even and tight seal.
• When installing downspouts, make sure they are directed away from the window well.
• Keep the cover on window sills at all times.
Well covers are an integral part of egress windows and offer the following benefits:
• Allow natural light into your finished basement and improve insulation
• Provide protection from intruders, as they are impossible to open from the outside
• Prevent leaks and flooded basements after a rainstorm
• Strongly crafted to withstand harsh weather conditions, such as heavy snow
• Easy to open from the inside; useful as an emergency exit
DIY or Hire a Pro to Install an Egress Window?
Egress windows can prove to be a vital addition to your home. They can help save lives in case of an emergency, add resale value to your home, and provide additional living space when installed below ground. An egress window installation requires a team of professionals and is not something you should try to DIY.
Reach out to a window installer near you to find out how much it would cost to install an egress window in your home.
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