Average Ceiling Height. What’s the Standard Ceiling Height?


The average ceiling height has undergone evolutions and changes over the years. A good number of people have adopted luxuriously high ceilings to open up their living space and make them more functional. Others, however, have stuck to traditional heights and as such, this writeup sought to clear the air on the average ceiling heights.

While choosing the ceiling height is at the home owner’s discretion, every decision has a reason. For a height choice, you can read through for insights on the standard ceiling height.

Standard Wall Heights

Often, people are doing nine-foot ceilings according to Mr. Hovnanian of J. S. Hovnanian & Sons, a home builder. They are now regarded as the standard wall heights as Gopal Ahluwalia of the National Association of Home Builders puts it. This has been happening from between 1995 to 2004 when people adopted 9 foot ceiling for first floors and single-and two-story houses.

standard wall heights

Mr. Hovnanian also explains why most people are going for 9 or 10 foot ceiling. The main reason is neither only because people are growing taller or prefer taller furniture, but there is a profound warmth about it. According to Mr. Hovnanian, it is the everyday grandeur that pushes people to build homes with higher ceilings.

Average Wall Height

Mr. Doug Dolezal, a Boston architect, advises that the average wall height should be at least 10 feet. He further explains that on average, eight-foot ceilings are preferable for secondary living spaces such as vestibules and bathrooms. As for the primary living spaces, a higher ceiling helps to improve the room’s proportion.

Contemporary art is also getting bigger and influencing the ceiling heights for most homeowners. As Mr. Oppenheim, a Miami architect points out, most people are asking for higher ceilings, not for themselves but to fit their art collections.

Standard Floor Height Residential Building

The standard floor height residential building is usually under regulations by local and federal governments and other relevant bodies. In the United States, for instance, the legislature bears the powers of regulating the height of residential buildings. It is, therefore, not at the owner’s discretion to go beyond a certain height without prior permission.

As per a Supreme Court ruling in Massachusetts, the legislature can determine the heights of different buildings per the neighborhood. This is a decision that can, therefore, impact on how high the ceiling of a house will be, depending on the number of floors too. The question of how tall is the average ceiling of a house in urban Massachusetts would then have varied responses.

As for the United Kingdom, there are no specific requirements for ceiling heights. There is, however, an exception with the ceilings in staircases which should be at least 6.5 feet. Besides that regulation, standard wall heights are not controlled by any law even though there are normal, minimum, and ‘good’ ceiling heights.

standard floor height residential building

Average Ceiling Height

Taking all aspects into consideration, what then is the standard ceiling height across various localities? Ceiling heights in America, for example, vary mainly based on the period and where the building was constructed. It, therefore, maybe a little bit hard to determine what would become the average wall heights in a neighborhood with ancient buildings.

An 8-feet ceiling house is an outdated one considering today’s changing market. Apart from being ideas from back between 1930-1950s, they make the rooms appear smaller, a little bit more cramped, and less accommodating.

9 foot ceiling

The 8-feet ceiling houses have also been evident up to the year 2000. After that, however, 9- and 10-feet ceiling houses started cropping up. They are now more popular, especially with the middle-class type homes.

Standard Height in New Homes

As indicated above, the time during which a house is built determines the ceiling heights. The standard that you will often find in new homes is 9- and 10-feet heights but may also depend on the roof materials. This is necessitated by the changes in people's needs and different first and second-floor ceiling needs.

standard floor height residential building

In entry homes, however, 8-feet 2x4 lumber ceilings are still common. Also, most modern homes will usually feature a 9-feet first-floor ceiling and then have 8-feet second and subsequent floor ceilings. However, the topmost floor may have varied ceiling height depending on the finishing as well as its purpose.

The different heights are also varied when it comes to living rooms changing the different answers to what is standard ceiling height. For example, one would be comfortable with 9-, 10-, 14-, 20-feet, and even 24-feet ceiling heights. Such cases are, however, on the extreme and may be guided by different aspects too.

Wrap Up

The average or typical ceiling height is not specific across some jurisdictions. Even though they are determined by several factors like when a building was constructed, the owner has a bigger say on what they want. Their decision may be based on the uses of the house, their heating and lighting needs, and how much they are willing to spend.

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