How Much Does it Cost to Build a Wine Cellar?
$500 - $100,000
$500 - $100,000
Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.
Updated July 15, 2020Written by HomeAdvisor.
On average, homeowners pay about $40,000 to build a wine cellar or walk-in wine cave. However, that price can change significantly based on size. A custom cabinet can cost as little as $500, while building an entire room for 3,000 or more bottles can cost as much as $100,000. Typically, construction cost ranges between $300 and $600 per square foot..
Size is not the only factor that will affect your estimate. You will also need to consider the type of refrigeration you choose, location, materials, and more. You can build and renovate the space on your own, but certain aspects of the project are best left to professionals.
Done right, this type of renovation provides considerable return on investment. Wine lovers will appreciate a room dedicated to their passion. In addition, it can increase your home's market value and perception of exclusivity among some potential buyers.
Size is among the most important considerations for building this type of storage. Most cellars average between 25 and 150 square feet, with a cost between $15,000 and $62,000.However, other factors also play into the equation. Understanding and reviewing these variables before the start of the project will help you stay within your budget.
|Cost Factor||Avg. Price Range|
|Location/Room Size||$500 - $25,000|
|Design||$500 - $15,000|
|Storage Capacity||$300 - $600 per square foot|
|Refrigeration/Cooling||$1,000 - $10,000|
|Rack Material||$2 - $20 per bottle|
|Temperature & Humidity||$100 - $3,500|
|Door||$500 - $3,500|
|Floors & Walls||$2,500 - $8,000|
|Lighting||$150 - $750|
For this project, location will be your single most important consideration. The space you choose should not receive direct sunlight and maintain a relatively steady temperature. Where you build the cellar will also affect how much renovation or construction work is needed.
Consider the size of the room. Requirements will change depending on how many bottles you need to store, and what features you want to add.
Underfloor wine cellars are built into the floor but can be pulled up (or pull up automatically) for display and use. Larger versions feature a walk-down spiral staircase. Most underground options range from $10,000 for a simple, pull-up version to $55,000 for a large, custom alternative.
Basements are the most common locations for complete wine caves. If you are looking to renovate your basement for this purpose, you might need to remodel first. In that case, take a look at our basement conversion ideas. Depending on the extent of work needed and the size of the room to be converted, the cost of a basement remodel ranges between $10,000 and $25,000.
Taking advantage of unused space under your staircase is another popular option, but fluctuating temperatures tend to be a concern. In addition, a renovation can get expensive because of the custom racks you will need to fit this unconventional space. These custom racks tend to cost between $500 and $2,500 each.
If your home features multiple large closets, you might want to convert one of them into a cellar. Here, your space will be relatively limited, but your remodeling costs will be less because you don't have to worry about windows or direct sunlight. However, airtight insulation is necessary to prevent changing temperatures from impacting your wine.
In your crawl space, inconsistent humidity can become a problem. You need to make sure that you have airtight insulation and humidity control in place before proceeding with the renovation. Insulating your crawl space will cost between $200 and $1,100.
The right renovation is not just functional, but also beautiful. Read more about the visual appeal and function that well-designed wine cellars can add to your home. Options range from a small shelf in your basement to a large room with space for tasting. Regardless of where you fall, you should pay special attention to the design.
This type of design is most common for underfloor and crawl space spaces. Small spiral cabinets pull up, and can cost as little as $1,000. Larger versions include a spiral staircase leading into the racks, and cost up to $55,000.
The key factor to consider in a spiral wine cellar is the opening. You need to be sure that it can hold the most weight it might be exposed to, while adding to the overall design of your home and flooring.
You might have the ability to add a tasting room to your cellar. This room doesn't necessarily need to be insulated or temperature controlled. The finishes you choose and the current state of the room both affect remodeling costs, which tend to range between $5,000 and $15,000.
If you don't have room in your basement, consider a walk-through alternative in a hallway of your main floor. When choosing this option, be sure to build insulated, airtight doors on both ends of the hallway.
For smaller collections, a single custom cabinet located in your kitchen, study, or living room, might be sufficient. The number of bottles you want to store will affect the cost of the cabinet. Small versions holding less than 10 bottles cost as little as $500, while larger alternative with capacity for up to 200 bottles can cost upwards of $4,000. You will have trouble controlling the temperature when storing bottles in uninsulated spaces. More on temperature and humidity below.
Your planning process needs to include the number of bottles you plan to store. You might own an extensive collection, or just a few exclusive bottles. Plan with 0.5 square feet of space per 10 bottles.
|No. of Bottles||Space (in square feet)||Average Cost|
|100||Small cabinet||$500 - $4,000|
|200||10||$7,000 - $15,000|
|500||25||$15,000 - $22,000|
|1,000||50||$26,000 - $32,000|
|2,000||100||$35,000 - $45,000|
Not all wine will need refrigeration. The amount of white and rosé vintages you want to keep cool should play into the process of planning your storage. Red wine will only need a rack on the wall, which will reduce its storage costs significantly.
The ideal storage temperature for wine depends on variety. Red wines don’t need cooling and are best kept between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Tart white and rosé wines need a cooled storage temperature between 45 and 52 degrees.
Depending on the size of your project, a simple wall cooler may suffice. These units are easy to install but offer limited space and take up valuable real estate in your cellar. More sophisticated walk-in options can be cooled via split or ducted systems, but typically require professional installation.
|Refrigeration Style||Average Price Range|
|Through-the-Wall Coolers||$1,000 - $3,500|
|Split Cooling||$5,000 - $15,000|
|Ducted Cooling||$3,000 - $10,000|
Refer to our Refrigeration System Cost Guide for more details on the price and options of installing a cooling unit in your home.
Because they are not cooled, red wines should be stored on racks. Most commonly, these racks are made of wood, although metal and glass have also become popular in modern homes. Other than material, your most important decision will be size.
Wine bottles and dimensions vary based on vintage and winery. Most measure between 3 and 3.2 inches in diameter and are about 12 inches tall. That means a standard rack cubicle, which fits 16 bottles, measures about 20 inches wide and high with a depth just below 11 inches.
You can buy standardized rack or build cabinets for your space. Depending on your choice and the material you use, expect your custom cabinets to cost be priced between $2 and $20 per bottle of wine racks.
A wine cellar (outside of its cooling unit) should hold a steady temperature between 55 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit, with relative humidity between 60 and 70 percent. Consistency is key to keep your vintages in good shape. Consider these steps to achieve that consistency:
The cost of interior doors will vary based on which materials, locations, and dimensions you choose. Expect to pay between $500 and $3,500 for a single, air-tight door.
If you build a walk-in wine cave, the needs to be air-tight and insulated. It should include an auto-close mechanism that keeps your bottles secure in their temperature-controlled environment.
In modern wine caves, doors often feature at least some glass element. Glass tends to be more difficult to insulate, so be sure to look for exterior-grade options.
Glass wine cellars have become popular but building them requires some consideration that does not apply to wood-based alternatives. The glass needs to keep out the wrong light; UV and natural light can both damage your wine. Costs tend to be slightly higher as a result, between 10% and 20% above the averages mentioned above. A cellar that would otherwise cost $30,000 will cost $33,000 to $36,000 when encased by glass.
If the entire room is encased by glass, insulation becomes another important installation factor. Because of the naturally low insulation abilities glass provides, you need to install thick panels.
Be careful not to leave gaps between the individual sheets of glass. Condensation can also become a problem.
The floor of your cellar does not actually serve a functional purpose and depends entirely on your preference. Flooring costs change based on the material you choose, from $1,500 for vinyl to $5,000 for tile at the same square footage. Softer materials like wood tend to be more forgiving if you drop a bottle, while hard surfaces (such as tile) are easier to clean.Similarly, wall renovations depend on your space. Try to stay away from concrete, which offers low insulation value unless it is coated. Wood and wood paneling can work well, as can glass. You can also keep it simple with insulated drywall. Expect to spend between $1,000 and $3,000 to finish your walls.
Most lighting projects costs between $150 and $750 for the fixture and installation.
UV light can be poison for your high-quality vintages, so direct natural light should be avoided at all costs. Meanwhile, halogen lights could result in heat damage. Use LED or fluorescent alternatives to protect your wine bottles from potential damage or spoilage.
If you are planning to use the room for more than storage, lighting can help it stand out with spotlights on your most valued bottles or backlighting behind your racks. Chandeliers are perfect for a more classic, wood-based ambiance.
Due to the budget required for construction, a cellar typically doesn't result in immediate return on your renovation expense. However, especially once you consider the immense personal benefits for wine lovers, its ROI benefits become more significant over time.
Because they're typically built in areas that would otherwise be unused, wine caves can also add to your home's resale value. If you're looking to sell, it will be the first thing that stands out in potential buyers' minds.
Importantly, the cost benefits of this renovation go beyond your home's resale value. Storing a bottle of wine in a controlled environment for five years can increase and even double its value. Once you build the space, you can strategically buy an increasing number of vintages as an investment that will pay off down the road.
The material costs listed above will be relevant even if you decide to complete your own renovation. However, you can save budget on labor, which is why some homeowners opt for a DIY installation to benefit their finest wines.
Opting out of professional installation saves up to 30 percent of total costs. The average budget needed to install a walk-in cellar drops from $40,000 to $28,000.
That said, taking on this type of project completely on your own might not make sense. Some of its components will be complex, such as installation of the refrigeration unit and/or effective glass doors. Do it wrong, and you can reduce the effectiveness of the cellar and harm your vintages.
You might be able to compromise. Complete some of the renovation on your own but call on professional help for the more complex processes that require specialized expertise and precision.
Some companies specialize in building and customizing wine cellars. However, these professionals tend to cost more than the estimates in this cost guide, and still subcontract some of the work. Homeowners tend to be better off hiring different pros as necessary, such as HVAC contractors for the refrigeration unit and cabinet builders for your custom wine racks.
When hiring external help, make sure to understand exactly what you are looking for. All of the above factors will play into the planning process, and your preferences in these areas will be relevant for a contractor.
Especially for larger options, it makes sense to work with a project manager who can help you find different experts for the individual required tasks. Smaller storage options, such as a custom kitchen cabinet, may only need a single, specialized expert.
Go into the process with a specific budget in mind. Because costs can range so drastically, you need to know exactly what size, type, and style of wine cellar you can afford. Do not start construction until the professionals you hire know your upper price limit.
Wine cellars are among the most exclusive and extensive remodeling options in your home. You need to find the right professionals to complete the job. Use our search tool to find basement remodeling contractors in your area, and start the process of adding a conversation piece to your home.