Standard Ceiling Height

Everyone loves a high ceiling. It’s cooler, has lot more space and is more visually appealing. Sometimes cost may tend to turn house owners towards the inclination of lower ceilings, but thanks to the standard ceiling specification laid down by the Building Code of Australia (BCA), there are certain regulations that must be followed when it comes to choosing your ceiling height. 

The standard ceiling height for most houses in Australia is 2.4m. However, you can pay extra for it to be higher at 2.55m, 2.7m or 3m when building.

Standard Ceiling Height

Minimum Ceiling Heights

The BCA sets out the minimum ceiling heights for different rooms. As a result, you can’t choose to go lower than these requirements laid down by this code. The specification also varies according to the specific room/kind of room in question. We take a look at some of the standards below:

  • General Habitable Room: For habitable rooms in Australia the minimum ceiling specification is 2.4m.
  • Kitchen: The minimum height specification for the kitchen is 2.1m. The reason for this is quite unclear as the kitchen is classified as a habitable room in the BCA. However, the standard ceiling height for kitchens in 2.4m.
  • Non-habitable Rooms: The minimum ceiling height specification for “non-habitable rooms” is 2.1m. Although, it is common to be 2.4m in these areas. Examples of these are the bathroom, hallway and garages etc.
  • Attics: Attic spaces can be provided by having rooms with slanting roofs. This leeway comes in handy to providing extra space above, with the only caveat being that the slanting roof must have 2/3 of its height no less than the standard 2.2m.
  • Stairways: The condition provided by the code for houses with stairways is quite similar to other rooms in its terms that overhead height should also be considered. Since only a brief moment of time is spent there, however, the specified height stays at 2m, which is considerably low compared to other rooms.

Room TypeRoomHeight
HabitableLiving rooms and bedrooms2.4m
Non-habitableBathroom, Corridors etc.2.1m
SpecialAttics *sloped ceiling*65% 2.2m

Minimum Ceiling Height

Standard Roof Height Variations 

Most home owners love high ceiling, which is quite understandable as having a high ceiling comes with numerous advantages. You not only have a high, spacious environment, but also get to enjoy the benefits of a cool atmosphere even in summer, and a wider range of lighting options to choose from.

This is why some do, in fact, go higher than the minimum requirements set down by the code. The average ceiling in Australia in new homes is 2.7m, with numerous home owners going as high as 3m.

Standard Legal Ceiling Requirements

Having a standard code for ceiling height in the BCA Vol 2 section offers a lot of advantages in terms of uniformity. Having irregular ceiling heights makes for bad aesthetics, uneven conditioning, and may end up causing various reconstruction needs, which in turn costs home owners more resources.

With standard ceiling heights, however, all these inconveniences are removed and you’re left with a nice, spacious environment and hosts of other advantages. 

The general standard ceiling height in Australia is set to be 2.4m, but this is not set in stone, as some builders choose to go as high as 3m but this increases the cost to build a house. And even though it is rare to go below that figure, for certain rooms in the house the ceiling heights can be as low as 2.1m.

Raising Ceiling Height Cost

Choosing a house or going through the Selection/Pre-Start can greatly affect your budget so you should be careful when considering these options.  If you’re planning to increase the ceiling height of your new house, it will usually cost around $6,000-$7,000 for every 300mm this varied depending on the specifics house of course.. The cost already includes services such as brickwork, and materials such as the plaster.

2 thoughts on “Standard Ceiling Height”

  1. How is the ceiling height measured? Does it consider the thickness of the ceiling material? or the thickness of the floor tiling, carpet etc?

    • The ceiling is measured from the top of the slab at 0c to the underside of the ceiling.

      It does not take into consideration tiles or carpet.


Leave a comment