Castles are a sign of pure aristocracy. From the ancient kings to the modern pop stars, they have all fancied a castle at one point in their lifetime. It would not be very wise to spend a whole lot of money on a castle to live in, however, it helps to create a persona that is magnificent.
Nowadays, most castles today are built for business purposes. They are sometimes leased to movie companies. Some castles are used as luxury hotels with all the modern facilities. Some castles are just there to carry on the legacy of their owners. Not many people attempt to build castles nowadays.
The reasons are very straightforward. A castle is not just a building. A castle has to have a lot of other unique features that differentiate it from other modern constructions. For example, the landscape needed to build a castle is vast and unique. If you fail to create the surroundings of the castle, a castle will lose all its appeal.
And it is hard to find such places to build castles. A castle is not also a place where the real estate industry is making its profits now. Well, you get the idea. In this article, we will guide you through the cost associated with building a castle. This is going to be a multi-dimensional article to help you achieve perspective on your project. We will also cover other questions apart from cost.
How Much Does it Cost to Build a Castle?
The cost of a finished castle depends on several factors. The accessibility of the construction site, the weather condition of the site, etc. will determine the actual cost of a finished castle. Also, an important factor is the choice of materials.
As we know, ancient castles were the marvels of the architecture of their periods. Kings would spend a fortune to build each one. There was very keen attention to detail to build the perfect castle. The materials like marbles and pearls took the construction cost sky-high. But such isn’t the case for modern ones.
In 2021, a finished castle will cost you from $325 per square foot to $600 per square foot. Ancient castles cost a lot more to build. Now, we have modern technology by our side. We can do the same work in a lot less.
Modern machinery, more efficient execution of construction, less building time cause the cost of castles in our time to be far less than the medieval periods. Materials used to decorate the insides of the castle are also available at affordable prices.
Most castles are built nowadays for business purposes. It is not that profitable to use over-the-top multi-colored shimmering chandeliers for decorations. Thus, the actual cost is lesser than those of the ancient ones.
Castle Building Cost Summary
The following table gives the total construction cost of a castle based on the estimates for the current year (2021) are given below:
|Average Building Cost||$325-$600 per square foot|
|Modern Castle Cost||$15,000,000- $20,000,000|
|Labor Cost||$15.87 (per hour)|
|Total Castle Construction Cost||$174,500,000|
World Top Castles Building Cost & Current Worth
The famous Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany cost $38.6 million in today’s money. Château de Versailles in France would cost $200-$300 billion today. Castles in middle age cost anywhere between £1,000 to £30,000. This is equivalent to $4,000,000 to $120,000,000 in today’s dollars.
Here is a list of famous castles around the world and their prices:
|Neuschwanstein Castle, Germany||$250 million|
|Hearst Castle Estate, United States||$750 million|
|Château de Versailles, France||$200-$300 billion (UN Heritage site)|
|Buckingham Palace, England||$5 billion|
|Ashford Castle, Ireland||$30 million|
|Château de Chambord, France||Around $1 billion (Not for sale)|
|Frederiksborg Castle, Denmark||$500 million|
|Biltmore Estate, United States||$157.2 million|
|Schwerin Castle, Germany||Around $150 million|
How much does it cost to build a modern castle home?
People do build houses that look like castles. Although they are not fully castles, they can certainly give you the feel of it. One of silicon valley’s startup owners decided to do so. He built a house in Los Gatos, California.
The house was built in the ’90s. At the time of the building, it took around 8 acres of land. The total land cost and building cost was $15 million. In today’s money, it will cost around $20 million. The house has every modern facility you need. Also, you can get the medieval environment.
Labor Cost in Castle Building
The average construction workers in The United States earn $15.87 an hour. You will have to consider this while making your budgets for the castle. As you can see, this is one of the biggest cost factors.
Suppose, a worker works for you 6 hours a day and they can work 5 days a week. So, you will have to pay him $476 a week. And you can multiply this by the number of workdays and the number of workers you have on your project.
This is a rough estimation. The skill of the labor, commute, and other factors will influence the cost. You can hire a contractor; in this case, you can talk to him/her to get proper estimations.
Major Cities Labor Hourly Rate
The average hourly rate of construction workers will differ in places. So, here is a list of the top ten highest-paying cities for construction workers.
|City Name||Labor Rates (Hourly)|
|San Francisco, CA||$19.48|
|San Jose, CA||$18.27|
How long does it take to build a castle?
The answer to this question covers a broad dimension. How long it takes to build a castle will depend on many factors. Castles are built-in unusual locations. This makes the construction window stretch a lot more than normal. Castles need a certain environment.
To achieve this environment, the site location becomes a priority. The site itself and the surroundings are taken into account. They are prepared cautiously. If not done properly, they can lose their appeal. Keeping that in mind, we can roughly give a time period.
Usually, it will take nearly 2 years to build a castle. The fastest castle ever built was completed within 15 months. But this cannot be a standard. It was an exception and we will keep it at that.
There are other things that need to be considered before estimating the time. The weather condition of the site will determine the pace of construction. The very bad weather can cause the project to take more time than normal.
The accessibility of the site is also a factor. If it is rather remote, the commute of materials will consume more time. This also complicates the management of materials. So, this will determine the period of construction to a great extent.
So, to sum up, you have to wait for at least a year or two. If you are planning to build a bigger and stronger castle, it will take you at least five years to complete. Also, a bigger castle will last longer. So, you have your options. Go for the one that suits your expectations the best.
How many people does it take to build a castle?
On average, three masons can work on a small castle. Three will be enough to complete such a project. You can add two or more for a medium-sized castle. If you are looking to build a bigger castle, you will have to hire ten or more masons to work on such a project.
The times have changed. Once it took a lot more to build a castle. Fortunately, we enjoy the fruits of modern technology. The construction industry is also using big machines that ease the workload. What was once a ten-person job, is now done by a single machine.
Surely, we live in wonderful times. So, technology helps us reduce man force. Although the labor cost won’t be as high as in medieval times, it will certainly need some attention.
What is the possible payroll of a castle staff?
If you are thinking about building a castle, it is only natural to think about this. You can build a castle for one of two purposes. One, to live and fulfill your lifelong dream. Two, to do business, i.e., starting a hotel or renting the castle out for different purposes.
If you are planning to start a business, the answer will depend on the scale and size of your business. Without knowing that, it is impossible to answer. On the other hand, if you are thinking about living in one, I can give you a rough estimation.
Suppose, you have a small family in an average castle. The quality of the staff is top-notch. There can be a staff of five. A chef, a butler, two maids, and a general staff. The number of staff is your choice. You also need at least two guards outside. Considering all this, the payroll will be $300,000-$500,000.
5 Important Factors of Castle Architecture
Here are some architectural elements that might come in handy in the castle building project.
1. External Environment
Castles are built keeping the external environment in mind. They have to have certain qualities. They are built or strong defense. And with the help of the surroundings, the defense is made stronger.
Castles are typically built on rivers, lakes, mountain tops, etc. These help to fortify the castles even more and create a stronger defense system.
The tower is the element that gives a castle its unique look. Without towers, the castle will not achieve its appeal. The towers are also built keeping the defense in mind. In case of any enemy attack, these towers help to monitor enemy movements. They also help to attack remotely.
Related: How Much Does a Cinder Block Weigh?
One can find many types of gates in a castle. There are elevated doorways, normal gates, a drawbridge, flanking towers. These are important features of a castle. They are associated with the core architectural views on building castles.
We’ve all heard about prisons and dungeons in castles. These chambers are hidden in the lower parts of a castle. Also, there are secret chambers. Some medieval castles also had torture chambers. Although, in our times, it is not legal.
5. Domestic Elements
Apart from all this, there are other domestic elements that are found in castles. Big stairways are a famous feature of castles. If you are thinking about castles, you have to imagine the stairs of Hogwarts, don’t you? Well, it is not possible to get magic stairways or talking paintings.
But you can certainly have grand stairways that attract every eye. There are also big castle doors, fireplaces, windows. Lavishly decorated ceilings are also seen.
I’m now answering the most common questions that people have asked about (Castle Building): FAQ
Can you build a castle anywhere?
It depends on your preferences. Although it is not suitable to build a castle anywhere. A castle gets its appeal from its surrounding environment. So, to build a castle, it is necessary to keep the surroundings in mind. Otherwise, it will lose its appeal.
Are castles cold and damp?
No. Castles do tend to have lower temperatures. But there are appropriate ways to tackle that. Fireplaces help to keep castles warm. Also, modern technology is helpful. We are not confined to any medieval techniques anymore.
Can you build secret passages in a castle?
Yes, you can. At the time of construction, you can build any number of secret passages in your castle. Make sure they don’t exceed your property boundaries. You can build any number of secret passages or secret rooms you want.
Can I have solar power for my castle?
You can have any type of utility you want in your castle. You just need to have the access to it. If your castle is in a remote location, it is not possible to get an electricity connection. So, you can use solar panels to power your castle.
How much would it cost to build a castle-like Hogwarts?
According to BigRentz, the real-life cost of building a castle-like Hogwarts will be $174.5 million.
Do people still live in castles?
Yes. For example, the British royal family still lives in a castle. Also, rich people still live in castles. Although castles were built for protection, they don’t serve that purpose anymore. Now, they are just a sign of luxury and aristocracy.
This way you will be able to plan your project with a lot of information in mind. We hope the article helps you make a better financial decision and reduce the cost of building your own castle.
There are some related articles you may also enjoy reading: