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How Much Do Egress Windows Cost?

Average Cost Range
? All cost data throughout this article are collected using the RS Means construction materials database.
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Updated On

April 8, 2024

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Egress windows are a must-have for finished basements, cellars, or below-ground bedrooms. The International Residential Code Council requires these spaces to have at least one operable exit in case of an emergency. Also, egress windows improve your home’s value, add natural light to an otherwise dark room, and provide ventilation with their window openings.

If you need an egress window for your home, you’ll want to consider the national average cost for these windows so you can budget for the expense. In this article, I’ll share the average cost of egress windows and the factors that will impact the project’s final price.

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How Much Do Egress Windows Cost?

On average, the installation of egress window costs between $2,500–$5,500. This cost range is higher than many other residential windows due to more involved installation, added accessories, and potential excavation needs.

Egress openings installed above ground level cost less — typically between $1,000–$2,500, but sometimes as low as $750. Basement egress windows with added glass accessories, stairs, and custom-built well openings are pricier, even reaching up to $7,500.

Read also: How much does Picture Window cost?

Regardless of the type of egress window, your specific costs will ultimately depend on the window size, materials, and customizations you choose. I’ll cover these factors and more in the following sections.

Cost RangeCost Per Window
Low-end Cost Range$1,000–$2,500
National Average Cost Range$2,500–$5,500
High-end Cost Range$5,500–$7,500

Our cost data comes from RSMeans, a price estimator database for contractors. The estimates included in this article cover average material and installation costs.

What Factors Affect the Cost of Egress Windows?

Several things impact the cost of egress windows. These factors can add hundreds or even thousands of dollars to your final price, so it’s imperative to understand them beforehand.

The main cost-defining factors for egress windows are:

  • Location
  • Size
  • Type
  • Material

Cost of Egress Windows by Location

Your new egress window’s location will likely be its most significant cost determinant. Aboveground egresses don’t require digging and, therefore, have similar costs to standard window projects. On the other hand, below-grade, or below-ground, egresses typically require excavation, concrete cutting, and well installation, which leads to higher costs.

Egress Window LocationCost Per Window
Below grade$2,500–$5,500
  • Aboveground egresses don’t require excavation, yielding a lower price of $700–$1,500 for materials and installation.
  • Below-grade egresses, commonly called basement egress windows, are those installed below ground level. Basement egress window costs are higher — between $2,500 and $5,500 — because of their complex installation requirements.

Window Well Installation Costs

A window well is the excavated area surrounding your egress window. These structures can be as simple or as high-end as you’d like, ultimately determining your price point. The main thing to know when budgeting for a window well is that you’ll likely need to hire a land surveyor and general contractor. The surveyor will ensure your property’s foundation and drainage system can handle the installation. Meanwhile, the contractor will remove dirt around the window area, create a new opening, and install the well.

Consider the rough estimates below for the project. Factor in the price of the window and any labor fees for a more realistic picture of your total project costs.

Additional Egress Window Installation CostsCost Per Window
Land surveyor$375–$500
Concrete cutting$400–$800
Window well$500–$2,000
Window Replacement
Window replacement typically costs between $400 and $1,000, depending on the type & material.
man repairing crack window
Window Repair
Leak repairs may cost $50 to $150, while more critical issues like frame damage can cost up to $1,000.
Energy Efficient Glass
Upgrading your home’s windows with double or triple-pane glass may range from $700 to $2,000+.

Cost of Egress Windows by Size

One of the most important things to know before installing egress windows is that they must follow certain building regulations. According to the International Residential Code (IRC), egress windows need to adhere to the following size requirements:

  • Minimum width of 20 inches
  • Minimum height of 24 inches
  • Minimum net clear opening of 5.7 square feet
  • The bottom of the window can be no more than 44 inches above the floor

Read this New Hampshire Department of Safety bulletin for more egress window specifications from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).This information will help you shop for an egress window that satisfies building codes and your home design needs.

Below are price estimates for prefab egress windows from popular retailers like Milgard, JELD-WEN, and Pella. These figures only include the national average costs of the windows, allowing you to see how size impacts your bill.

Egress Window SizeCost Per Window
22” X 44”$390
24” X 20”$390
48” X 48”$460–$655
28” X 52”$540–$800
27” X 45”$670–$725
31” X 41”$800–$900
28” X 46”$800–$900
36” X 48”$910–$1,000

Cost of Egress Windows by Type

Egress windows are designed to provide emergency exits from the home. In everyday settings, they also improve ventilation in closed-off living spaces like basement bedrooms. For these reasons, egress windows must be operable (able to open and close) and large enough for a person to fit through.

When shopping for egress windows, you can choose from a handful of functional window types, which I’ve detailed below. 

Egress Window TypeCost Per Window
  • Casement windows are the most common type of egress windows. They swing out on hinges like a door to expose the full opening. This means you can select a smaller size because the glass panes won’t block any area when the window is fully open. Read our article to discover casement window pricing in your area.
  • In-swing windows are casement windows that open inward. Like casements, in-swing windows are ideal for egress openings because they take up less space and open to expose the full window area.
  • Sliding windows have sashes that move horizontally on a track. Sliding egress windows must be at least 4-feet-by-4-feet to meet code requirements when fully open.
  • Double-hung windows feature two operable sashes that overlap in the middle to allow airflow through the top and bottom sections. Double-hung windows work as egresses if the opening size meets regulations.
  • Single-hung windows feature one operable sash that overlaps with a fixed top sash. Like double-hung models, these must have a big enough opening to meet regulations.

Cost of Egress Windows by Material

The cost of any window will fluctuate depending on the framing material you choose. Vinyl is usually the cheapest option due to its lower-cost, automated manufacturing process. Wood costs the most because of more expensive raw materials and manufacturing processes. Materials like fiberglass and aluminum tend to cost in the midrange.

Egress Window MaterialCost Per Window
  • Vinyl is the cheapest framing option for your egress windows. The material is customizable and low-maintenance, providing insulation and durability for up to 20 years.
  • Aluminum is a midrange-cost framing option for egress windows. Its long-lasting durability makes it an excellent choice for homeowners in severe weather climates.
  • Fiberglass is more expensive than vinyl but offers much higher strength and durability for longer. This material is warp, rot, and corrosion-resistant, making it a top choice for egress windows in wet climates.
  • Wood is typically the most expensive window material but provides superior insulation and long-lasting beauty. Wood is susceptible to pests, rot, and warping, so keep this in mind if you live in a wet climate.

Additional Costs of Egress Windows

Beyond materials, location, and size, you must also budget for any window accessories, required building permits, and potential labor costs. These additional fees can drive up your price by hundreds or thousands of dollars but are necessary for a successful egress window installation.

Your total bill may include some of these factors:

  • Window well covers are optional accessories to add to your egress windows. These hard plastic or glass sheets cover the exposed window well to prevent falls, standing water, and debris buildup around the window. They’re affordable and typically cost under $150. If you’re on a budget, draft stoppers can serve as a temporary measure to prevent water from entering your home. If you’d like to learn to make draft dodgers for your doors and windows, you might want to check out our article that provides a detailed guide on how to craft draft stoppers for doors and windows.
  • Labor and installation will account for a large part of your egress window costs. An egress window installation team costs around $237 per hour or $1,896 daily.
  • Required permits: You may need to acquire a building permit to add an egress window to your home. Permits for windows and doors generally fall between $100–$300, so you should factor this amount into your project budget.

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egress window leading into a basement
Credit: Canva

How Does the Cost of Egress Windows Compare to Other Window Types?

Egress windows are one of the most expensive windows you can add to your home. The higher price point stems from the labor-intensive installation process these home additions require.

If your basement doesn’t need an emergency escape route, you might want to consider a different window style for your home. See price ranges and use cases for the most common window types below:

Window TypeAverage Cost Range
Glass block$500–$1,000
Bay and bow$1,200–$4,000

Is DIY Worth the Cost Savings of Installing Egress Windows?

A safe and successful egress window installation requires careful planning and in-depth knowledge. For this reason, I strongly suggest hiring a professional contractor to install your egress window. Unless you’re an expert do-it-yourselfer with skills in excavation, concrete cutting, foundation work, and window installation, this job is better left to home improvement pros. A faulty installation could cause serious injury or long-lasting damage to your home.

If you opt for a do-it-yourself egress window installation, take these safety precautions:

  1. Acquire a building permit to ensure your window meets building code requirements.
  2. Call the 811 digging hotline before excavating any part of your yard. This step can prevent you from hitting underground water, gas, or power lines.
  3. Install a drainpipe in the egress well to prevent water buildup around your home’s foundation.

How to Save on Egress Windows

Installing egress windows yourself to save money isn’t an option for most homeowners. However, there are several ways that you can make this a more affordable window replacement project:

  • Select a basic egress window model with simple features.
  • Choose a prefabricated window instead of a custom one (this may not be feasible if you need a unique size to fit your home).
  • Check out multiple window providers’ egress windows and compare pricing for different materials. Vinyl is almost always the most budget-friendly window frame material.
  • Gather at least three quotes from professional contractors and negotiate for a better deal to save on installation costs.

Is an Egress Window Worth It for Your Home?

Egress windows generally cost between $2,500–$5,500 for materials, installation, and add-ons. Although these windows come at a higher price point, they have multiple benefits, including improved ventilation, lighting, and home safety. In my opinion, that’s well worth the investment for the greater peace of mind alone.

Ready to start planning your egress window project? Complete the form below for quotes from my favorite window installers in your area:

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FAQs About Egress Window Costs

Do Egress Windows Increase Home Resale Value?

Egress windows can increase your home’s value by transforming belowground square footage into fully finished living spaces. Egress windows are one of the few home improvement projects that recoup the cost of installation and more when you sell your home.

What Are the Benefits of Egress Windows?

The main benefit of egress windows is that they provide a way for people to escape or enter the home in case of an emergency. This feature is especially important for homes in fire-prone areas.

The secondary benefit of egress windows is their ability to add light and airflow to belowground spaces. You can transform your dark, unwelcoming cellar into a cozy finished basement.

Do Egress Windows Weaken the Home’s Foundation?

Improperly installed egress windows can cause serious damage to your home’s foundation. A faulty installation can lead to weakened walls, a shifty foundation, moisture damage, and flooding.

Avoid these disasters by hiring a professional egress window installer for the job. An expert installer will have the tools and expertise necessary to add a safe, functional window to your home without damaging it.

Are Egress Windows Easy to Install?

Egress window installation is best left to professionals because of the many tools and the expert-level skill required. Certain building codes and local requirements may also affect how the window can be installed, which isn’t something most DIYers are equipped to meet.

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Reviewed for accuracy, cost data, industry best practices, and expert advice by Amy DeYoung.
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Amy DeYoung


Amy DeYoung has a passion for educating and motivating homeowners to improve their lives through home improvement projects and preventative measures. She is a content writer and editor specializing in pest control, moving, window, and lawn/gardening content for Today’s Homeowner. Amy utilizes her own experience within the pest control and real estate industry to educate readers. She studied business, communications, and writing at Arizona State University.

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Lora Novak

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Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

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