How Much Does Drywall or Sheet Rock Cost?

Annie Sisk
Written by Annie Sisk
Updated January 11, 2022
Living room with vaulted ceiling
Photo: Dana Hoff / The Image Bank / Getty Images

Regular or whiteboard drywall panel sheets cost between $12 and $20 per panel, with a national average price of $15

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Whether you’re building an addition or a brand new home, you’ll probably need drywall panels to create walls and ceilings. Drywall is made from gypsum mixed in with other materials such as mica, clay, and resin particles, all sandwiched between two sheets of paper of varying thickness. 

You should expect to pay somewhere around $0.50 per square foot for drywall, but that price can fluctuate significantly depending on the type of drywall, size, and thickness you choose.

How Much Does Drywall Cost per Sheet?

Drywall panel prices can be anywhere from $12 to $90 each, depending on several factors, such as the type of drywall you choose, the panel’s dimensions, and its thickness. The most commonly available drywall products are about half an inch thick and 4 feet by 8 feet (width by length). However, these panels also come in five-eighths-inch and three-quarters-of-an-inch-thick varieties. 

On average, you can expect to pay about $15 for each 4-foot-by-8-foot panel of drywall, with a typical range of $12 to $20, or approximately $0.40 to $0.65 per square foot. 

Panels that measure 4 feet by 12 feet average about $15 to $24 each, although prices run up to $90 per panel, depending on what type you’re working with and its purpose. Based on these average prices, the larger panels cost approximately $0.31 to $0.50 per square foot.

How Much Does Drywall Cost Near You?

Drywall costs are usually measured by the panel and can vary quite a bit depending on size, thickness, brand and type. More specialized forms of drywall (such as soundproof drywall) can cost more. 

As the list below shows, even within a specific location, drywall cost per panel can vary, so it’s a good idea to do some price comparison and research to know exactly what you’re getting:

LocationAverage Price per Panel
Oregon$13.90 – $19.60
California$11.85 – $19.80
Ohio$7.85 – $12.10
Colorado$13.20 – $17.50
Michigan$8.40 – $17.50
New York$10.35 – $17.50
Vermont$11.50 – $17.50
North Carolina$10.50 – $17.50
Texas$10.50 – $17.50

How Much Drywall Can I Get on My Budget?

Depending on the size of the room you’re building, you might need anywhere from a few to a few dozen drywall panels. If you’re finishing a home, of course, you’ll need a lot more panels to cover the livable square footage. 

Here’s how much drywall you can expect to buy based on different budgets. Note: These costs are based on 4-foot-by-8-foot drywall panels.

$500

For $500, you can purchase enough panels to provide coverage for a single room that measures up to 800 square feet. That’s the equivalent of a square room with 10-foot ceilings and walls 15-feet wide.

$1,000

For $1,000, you can purchase up to 67 panels at the national average price of $15 per panel. This amount is enough to provide coverage for up to approximately 2,100 square feet with a few extra panels as a buffer. Many smaller homes in the U.S. measure around 2,000 square feet or less.

$2,000

For $2,000, you can purchase approximately 125 panels. That’s enough drywall to install for most homes, up to around 4,000 square feet total, and includes a few extras to account for waste.

How Much Does Drywall Cost by Type?

New drywalled room
Photo: Jo Ann Snover / Adobe Stock

Panels of drywall come in many different types, each of which is best suited for different situations. This flexibility allows you to pick exactly the right material to address your specific needs. However, specialized drywall panels might add to the total cost, sometimes substantially.

Purple Drywall

Purple drywall provides some moisture and mold protection to your structure compared to the standard, regular or whiteboard drywall. Purple board drywall reduces moisture, which in turn hampers the growth of mold. If allowed to grow, mold can be dangerous to your family’s health and expensive to remove safely. It costs an average of $15 to $20 per panel, although many retailers offer discounts for bulk purchases.

Green Board Drywall

You can also buy green board drywall for added moisture protection, though it doesn’t offer quite as much as purple drywall. It is not the best choice for areas that will be in contact with any kind of water source. People often use green board drywall as a backing surface to apply tiles in places like bathrooms, kitchens, and laundry rooms. It will cost a bit more than regular or whiteboard drywall.

Blue Board Drywall

Blue board drywall (sometimes called plaster baseboard) is made from a special type of exterior paper that produces a smooth-as-glass finish after it’s been plastered. It also offers a bit more moisture and mold resistance than regular or whiteboard drywall. It costs an average of $12 to $15 per panel.

What Factors Influence the Cost of Drywall?

The price of drywall largely depends on its size and how you’ll be using it.

Material Type

Generally speaking, the least expensive drywall options will be the standard whiteboard panels measuring 4 feet by 8 feet with half-inch thickness. Panels that are bigger or thicker than this will typically cost more, as will some of the more specialized types of drywall.

Labor

Additionally, don’t forget to account for drywall installation and supply costs. Unless you’re tackling this job yourself, you’ll need to factor in the cost of labor, which can add up to half the cost of the drywall, or an average range of $50 to $100 per hour, depending on the square footage you need to install. You’ll also have to purchase necessary supplies, such as joint compound (or drywall mud).

Job Type

If you’re patching a hole in existing drywall, you can expect your budget to be much less—around $100 or so, unless you’re dealing with several damaged areas throughout the house.

How Much Does It Cost to Install Drywall Yourself?

The cost to hang and finish drywall panels is approximately $0.30 to $0.50 per square foot, while labor costs can add up to $100 per hour. Hanging and finishing the drywall in your new home or addition yourself will certainly save you money for labor costs. 

However, you’ll also have to purchase necessary supplies, including joint compound or drywall mud, as well as other necessary supplies and equipment. Those additional costs might make it more economical to hire a local drywall contractor who already has access to those tools. 

Keep in mind that drywall installation requires precise measuring, cutting, and trimming to ensure a precise fit. You’ll also probably need someone to help you lift and carry the panels.

FAQs About Drywall

Is there a difference between sheetrock and drywall?

People often use both terms interchangeably, which can cause some confusion. However, there is a difference. Drywall is the generic name for this construction product, while sheetrock is actually a brand name that’s specific to U.S. Gypsum Company’s drywall product.

How do I calculate how much drywall I need?

To calculate how many drywall panels you’ll need to buy, you’ll first need to know the dimensions of each wall in the room, the height of the ceiling, and the size of the panels.

  • First, calculate the room’s square footage by multiplying the height (from floor to ceiling) and the width (side to side) of each wall and the ceiling in turn.

  • Add all those products together.

  • Divide the total square footage by the square footage of a single drywall panel:

DimensionsSquare Footage
4’ x 8’32 sq. ft.
4’ x 9’36 sq. ft.
4’ x 10’40 sq. ft.
4’ x 12’48 sq. ft.
  • Round that number up to the nearest whole number. For example, if your result from step 3 is 70.27, you’ll need to get 71 drywall panels.

  • Add on at least two extra sheets (or 10% of the total) to account for waste or errors.

You can also use a drywall estimate calculator.

Which type of drywall should I choose?

For most residential projects, the standard whiteboard drywall panels will do just fine. If your project has unique needs, such as a room that will need additional soundproofing or a thicker than usual drywall panel, you’ll need a kind of drywall designed to meet those needs. 

Your licensed contractor can help you determine exactly what kind of drywall your project needs and how many panels you’ll need to complete the space in question.

Can I install drywall myself?

If you’re a skilled DIYer, it’s possible to tackle this job yourself. However, you might want to think twice before doing so. It takes specialized equipment and tools to install and finish drywall. Purchasing or renting that equipment will likely wind up making your DIY project much more expensive than if you’d hired an experienced contractor.

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