How Many Dollar Bills Would It Take to Build a House – Literally?

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Anyone who has struggled to save for a down payment knows that homes are expensive. REALLY expensive. Especially after taking advantage of so many holiday shopping deals lately. It got us thinking … how expensive would it be to actually build a house out of money?

It’s these kinds of things that keep us up at night, so we asked the data scientists at Redfin to crunch the numbers and tell us what it would cost to construct a home from dollar bills. It was like an interview question at Amazon, or a crazy math question on the SAT.

We started by figuring out the dimensions of the average American home. According to information Redfin gets from county public records, the average home is 1,811 square feet. While floor plans and architectural styles vary, for the sake of this calculation, the home:

  • Has two stories, and each story is 10 feet tall;
  • Has exterior walls that are eight inches thick and interior walls that are five inches thick;
  • Has a roof that is three inches thick and a floor that is two inches thick; and
  • Is twice as long as it is wide.

Then, using the dimensions of a dollar bill (6.14” × 2.61” × 0.0043”), we calculated how many dollars it would take to construct a house if you stacked them on top of each other.

The total? 441,435,440 dollar bills.

There might be a few billionaires out there who have enough cash to try this at home. However, with the median home purchase price being $256,000, the rest of us are probably better off using our dollars to buy a house instead of to build one.

Infographic explaining how many dollars it would take to build a house - literally

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christin-camachoredfin-com

Christin covers a variety of topics for Redfin Real-Time, ranging from “best places” lists, to Redfin client stories, to celebrity news and everything in-between. Her dream home would have an enormous walk-in closet, a home theater and a room dedicated to her cats. Redfin is a full-service real estate brokerage that uses modern technology to make clients smarter and faster. For more information about working with a Redfin real estate agent to buy or sell a home, visit our "Why Redfin?," page.

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