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  • House Repointing Costs

    Trying to find out how much it costs to repoint a house? In this article we look at brickwork repointing prices for different house sizes and different conditions of pointing so that it's easy to calculate the cost for any situation.

    Average Cost of Repointing Brick Walls on a House:

    Depending on the complexity of the job, it usually takes: 1 week

    £3000

    How Much Does Repointing a Brick Wall Cost?

    Bricks are sturdy materials that will generally outlive you. But the mortar that holds them together needs regular attention to keep rain and damp from penetrating the walls of your home.

    To rejuvenate the mortar, you will need to have your brick walls repointed which ranges from £600 to £1500 for a single 30m² brick wall to £1000 up to £2500 for a single 50m² brick wall. If you need you the entire exterior of your property repointed then this normally costs £1300 to £2350 for a terraced house, £1900 to £4750 for a semi-detached home and £2900 to £7250 for a detached property.

    1imageofrepointingabrickwall1

    These costs will, of course, vary depending on how damaged the mortar, and how much of it needs to be repaired. If you have any additional damage, such as damp or broken bricks, the job will take much longer and will also be a lot more expensive.

    Repointing Brick Wall Prices

    Here is a price breakdown of various size jobs involved brick wall repointing.

    Job Description Avg. Cost
    Repointing 30m² brick wall £600 to £1500
    Repointing 50m² brick wall £1000 to £2500
    Repointing 65m² terraced home £1300 to £3250
    Repointing 95m² semi-detached home £1900 to £4750
    Repointing 145m² detached home £2900 to £7250

    Supply Costs Only

    If you are planning to repoint a brick wall yourself, then here is a breakdown of the different supply costs for lime, sand and white cement which all forms part of a high-quality mortar mix.

    Supplies Cost per KG
    Lime £0.40 to £0.50
    Sand £0.08 to £0.10
    White cement £0.40 to £0.50

    Additional Costs

    There are several others you need to consider when calculating the cost of brick wall repointing, including:

    Render house exterior

    After your walls have been repointed, you may want to consider re-rending your walls as this will allow you to achieve a smooth or textured surface which makes the process of painting brick much easier.

    The average cost to render the exterior of your home starts from £2500 to £3500 for a two-bedroom bungalow, £4200 to £5500 for a three-bedroom semi-detached home and £6700 to £8300 for a four-bedroom detached property.

    2housethatisrendered

    Painting house exterior

    Once your exteriors have rendered and are ready to be decorating, you will need to consider the cost of painting the outside of your home.

    The cost to hire a professional to paint your exterior walls is £550 to £750 for a terraced property, £7000 to £1000 for a semi-detached home and £900 to £1500 for a detached house.

    House cladding

    If you want to improve your property's insulation and weather resistance, then you may want to consider installing cladding which, in comparison to rendering, is made of dry materials which fit onto the exterior of a property.

    The typical cost of a cladding installation will depend on the materials used, for instance, timber cladding ranges from £2400 small bungalow up to £4500 for a standard two-bedroom property.

    In comparison, aluminium cladding starts from £4500 for a single-storey bungalow and goes up to £6500 for a two-bedroom semi-detached home.

    3housewithcladding

    Scaffolding hire

    When repointing brick or installing cladding, you may want to hire a professional to install scaffolding to ensure that the job is completed in a safe and professional environment.

    This is typically priced at £565 for single side scaffold or up to £900 to put up scaffolding around an entire two-storey semi-detached property.

    Labour Costs and Timescales

    Finding a good bricklayer can be difficult, many are booked up weeks if not months in advance, so don't leave things till the last minute.

    The average cost of repointing a house can vary depending on the style of brick and type of method used. When calculating the price, you need to think about timescale, materials and labour.

    Most tradespeople will work on a meter squared basis, and they will charge anything from £20 to £50 metre squared. If they need to get some scaffolding, it will also cost a little more.

    The general time frame for repointing is generally around one day for small repointing jobs, while the price for repointing brickwork for an entire property could take up to six days to complete.

    What is Repointing?

    The mortar in between your bricks is called pointing, and this will need to be repaired or renewed at some point. The best way to check your pointing is to simply look at it and check it's all even and pretty flush to the brickwork.

    Then try running your finger along it and see if any mortar crumbles and comes away. You need to check in multiple areas on all the walls, as mortar quality can be patchy, as it may look great on the back wall, yet crumbling on the front.

    4gapsinmoratrandbrick

    If you can see any gaps between the mortar and the bricks, or if any mortar comes away with your fingers, then this means you will likely need to have some repairs done on your brickwork.

    Mortar damage can sometimes be localised in areas where there may have been a leak, but often the mortar will simply be timeworn and crumbling with age or have been poorly laid in the first place.

    The state of the mortar in the walls will not necessarily be the same over the entire area. Typically the corners facing the prevailing winds suffer first, then areas below drips from windows or gutters etc. Mortar around window and door surrounds is often weak due to the vibration over the years.

    So you may not need to have the entire wall repointed. However, if you only have part of the wall repointed, the new mortar colour will stick out like a sore thumb unless you are fortunate.

    So, the best plan in most cases is to repoint the entire wall, raking out some sound mortar that doesn't really need pointing and repoint that as well, so the whole wall will end up the same colour.

    Cost Factors of Repointing Brick Walls

    In order to calculate the cost of repointing brick walls, you need to consider the following factors.

    Location of property

    Where you live will contribute you to the final cost evaluation, as bricklayers in different areas charge various prices. For instance, the average daily rate for a bricklayer based in London is around £220, while a tradesperson in the north-west may charge just £180 for a full day's work.

    5imageofrepointingabrickwall2

    Ease of access

    If you need your entire house repointing or need repairs to the bricks near the roof, then some tradesperson charge more as the job will be more difficult and will also take longer. They may also charge for scaffold installation which can cost up to £900.

    Size of wall

    Bricklayers tend to charge £20 to £50 which is the average repointing price per m², so the size of the wall will determine the final cost. For instance, a 30m² wall tends to cost £600 to £1500 for repointing, while a 50m² brick wall ranges from £1000 to £2500.

    Number of walls

    When figuring out a final quote, bricklayers will assess the condition of your walls and determine how many walls need repointing. You may only get a low quote if just one wall needs fixing but if it is your entire house you could pay anywhere from £1300 to £7250 depending on the size of your home.

    Type of mortar joint

    Another cost affecting factor is the type of mortar joint you want. For example, a concave mortar joint tends to be harder to create as it requires a curved steel jointing tool, although once it is in place, it is incredibly durable to weather and wear.

    This means it will take a lot longer, in comparison to a weathered mortar finish which usually fits into a horizontal joint and blocks out water.

    What's Involved in Repointing Brick Walls?

    To help you understand the process of hiring someone to repoint your brick walls, here is a step. By step breakdown:

    1. Before the repointing can begin, water will usually be sprayed onto the area that needs repairing as this will prevent the mortar from drying too quickly.
    2. Once the wall has been dampened, the bricklayer will then remove the old mortar, followed by clearing away any dust or debris from the surrounding areas.
    3. After all the old mortar has been removed, they will then start to lay the new mix and fill in the empty gaps between the bricks. They usually use a mixture of lime, cement and sand to do this.
    4. 6personrepointingbrickwall
    5. The mortar will then be left to dry until it can be touched with leaving fingerprint marks. At this stage, they will then brush or wipe off any excess mortar to make it look neat and smooth.

    Can I Repoint a Brick Wall Myself?

    Repointing is a job that you can do yourself if you have the skills, but it is best to get a professional bricklayer to at least check it first and give advice.

    You will likely need scaffolding to do the upper floors of your house and professionals will have all the right tools and be able to do a more thorough job than you, leaving a nice clean finish.

    Like many jobs, pointing can look deceptively simple when you watch a professional doing it.

    But when you first try it for yourself, it soon becomes apparent that without the special knack required you can make a real mess of things. If you do decide to try it yourself, make sure you get some practice first on a wall which does not have to be pretty, such as the back of a garage.

    If you have a low budget in mind, you should take a look at an online repointing cost calculator which will help you determine the final price, while also helping save on labour costs, then you should consider doing it yourself. However, when doing, you should be wary of disturbing very old bricks while removing mortar.

    This includes Victorian yellow stocks or red rubbers, as they are really soft compared to a more modern brick, so they are more susceptible to chips and cracks. With old bricks, you should stick to the areas which need doing while removing the crumbling mortar and leaving everything else intact.

    It won't look great at first, but after it has weathered for a while, it won't stick out too much.

    What is the Best Mortar for Repointing Brick Walls?

    There are various types of mortar, including type M, S, N and O, although not all of them are suitable for repointing brick walls.

    Professionals tend to use Type N mortar which is a medium-strength mix which is made up of one part lime, one part cement and six parts sand. This works well with brick and stone as it is flexible, prevents cracking and is highly resistant to high heat and low temperatures.

    Another popular mortar mix is Type S which has a similar strength to Type N, although it is slightly stronger and can be used for outdoor patios and below-grade exterior walls. This is made up of two parts cement, nine parts sand and one part hydrated lime.

    Types of Mortar Joints

    One of the most important things you need to consider is the type of mortar joint you want, as there are several types which offer various aesthetics and functions, including:

    Bucket Handle

    The Bucket Handle finish is probably the most popular today, introduced in the 1930s; this is where the mortar is rubbed up with a piece of tubing or a special tool shaped like a galvanised bucket handle.

    7buckethandlejoint

    Weatherstruck

    Weatherstruck is a type of finish first used by the Victorians where the newly applied mortar is angled downwards to just slightly overhang the brick below to shed the water away from the joint.

    Recessed

    A recessed joint is an extra raked joint which is applied 2 to 5mm deeper than the wall's surface. This is fitted horizontally and is normally used in conjunction with vertical head joints.

    8recessedjoint

    Raked

    Raked Joints is where the mortar is simply raked out to leave a flat vertical finish recessed slightly from the brick face. It is quick and easy but not popular nowadays as it allows any water to sit in the recess, which over time will cause problems.

    Building Regulations & Planning Permission for Repointing a Brick Wall

    You do not need to apply for planning permission or building regulations approval in order to repoint your property's exterior walls. However, if you live in a listed building, then you may need to check before making any changes to the foundations of the property.

    Do My Walls Need Repointing?

    If you notice any loose bricks or empty gaps between the bricks, then this is a clear sign that your walls need to be repointed. You will also need to consider repointing if the mortar has receded by 5 to 10mm.

    9wallthatneedsrepointing

    Benefits of Repointing a Wall

    There are various advantages for having your brick walls repointed including:

    Structural integrity

    Having your walls repointed will make your property walls much more robust and also ensure your home's foundations last longer and are protected against wear and tear.

    Weatherproofing

    One of the biggest benefits of repointing is that adding new and improved mortar will protect your home during adverse weather conditions including high heat, cold temperatures and damp.

    Appearance

    Old mortar tends to look unsightly, which therefore makes the exterior of your home look untidy. By repointing your brick walls, you can improve the look of your property while also enhancing kerb appeal.

    Property value

    As mentioned, repointing can improve kerb appeal by updating a property's exterior, which will, therefore, more look more attractive to prospective buyers, increasing demand and property value.

    Low-maintenance

    Having your walls repointed will actually save you a lot of money on maintenance and repairs, as you will not need to have your walls repointed for another 50 to 60 years. Brickwork repointing also prevents damp and leaks, which again will prevent from spending money to repair leaks or damp patches.

    Removing Mortar from Brick Cost

    Before repointing your brick walls, you will need to have your old mortar removed first. For a job like this, you should expect to pay around £25 to £45 per hour for a professional to remove your outdated mortar.

    A cheap option would be to remove it yourself with a hammer chisel, which will save you money but will also be a lot more time-consuming.

    10removingmortarfrombrickwall

    If you do not have the old mortar removed, then more than likely, the new mortar will fail, and you will have wasted time and money purchasing, mixing and applying mortar as it will not adhere properly.

    Hiring Contractors to Repoint Brick Walls Checklist

    Before hiring a tradesperson to repoint your brick walls, take a look at the following checklist, which sets out everything you should look for when employing a bricklayer.

    • Enquire about previous jobs and if possible ask for proof in the form of images or reviews
    • Check their qualifications which may include a Level 2 Technical Certificate in Bricklaying or a Level 3 Advanced Technical Diploma in Bricklaying
    • Try to choose a tradesman who is qualified under the Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS)
    • Make sure they have public and employer's liability insurance to protect you and them should an incident occur

    FAQs

    What is the best way to clean bricks after repointing?
    If you have any excess wet mortar on the face of your bricks, then you should use a trowel to even out the mortar mix and remove any unwanted materials. If you notice any residue to dust on your bricks, then you should take a medium soft bristle brush on the face of bricks and perform a sweeping motion to get rid of it.

    If you have any dry mortar stuck on your bricks, then this can be much harder to remove, and you may require a hose and drilling equipment to get rid of the tough material. You need to make sure that the wall is wet before any drilling can occur as this will prevent damage to the bricks. You can also use a chisel to get rid of any mortar build-ups and breaking them down into small pieces to avoid difficult breakages.
    Do I need planning permission or building regulations approval before repointing?
    Not usually, if the repairs are minor and you are replacing mortar like for like. But of course, you should always check with your local planning department before doing any works to be on the safe side as rules change over time!
    Why does my wall need repointing?
    Over time, weathering and decay will cause voids in the joints between the bricks, which allows water to penetrate. The mortar is designed to fail eventually in a sacrificial way to save the brickwork.
    What's the right mortar to use for repointing a brick wall?
    A large range of textures and colours can be achieved to complement existing brickwork or even match older mortar if just doing small area repairs. Today you can buy a range of easy mix mortar products from your local DIY store which comes complete with instructions and their own tub for mixing.
    How often should I have my brick or stone repointed?
    Repointing restores the physical integrity of the masonry, and when adequately done, it looks much better too. Repointing done well should last over 50 years, but dodgy tradespeople taking shortcuts can result in a job that looks bad and will last.

    All mortar joints will deteriorate over time but should last for many years, so this should be a once in a lifetime job!

    Sources

    https://theconstructor.org/building/brick-mortar-joint-types/24636/
    https://brickarchitecture.com/about-brick/why-brick/types-of-joints
    https://www.sunrisetools.co.uk/blog/post/8-how-to-pointing-repointing-brickwork
    https://www.planningportal.co.uk/info/200130/common_projects/20/fences_gates_and_garden_walls
    https://www.championbrickwork.co.uk/accreditations/

    Last updated by MyJobQuote on 22nd December 2020.

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