How much does a typical home server cost?

Have you tried to use peer-to-peer networking on four or more PCs?

If you found your network vulnerable to viruses, attacks, and lost data, then you're not alone. Peer-to-peer networking is fine for a few home computers. But if you link more than three devices or you're running a small business, then you might need to take a more significant step to protect your PCs.

A home server manages, stores, shares, and handles your data 24/7/365. They offer better reliability, a central backup solution, higher levels of security and simpler sharing.

How much does a typical home server cost? Keep reading to learn what costs you need to consider when building a home server.

How Much Does a Typical Home Server Cost?

Expect to spend at least $1,000 or more on your home server unless you re-build or salvage a server from elsewhere.

The $1,000 you spend will cover the hardware alone. It's crucial to choose durable equipment because your server runs every hour of the day.

Running a machine over this time frame strains the components available at a consumer level. By investing in a good quality server, you prolong the life of your network and save money because you don't need to find replacement parts.

Other Home Server Costs

Hardware isn't your only cost consideration. You'll also see your home energy use rise as you power and cool your server all day.

The total cost of your server depends on your cost per kilowatt of energy. Check with your energy provider to see how much you pay before considering hardware. Remember that your hardware also plays a role.

Consider buying a measurement device, like a Kill-a-Watt, to measure the actual power consumption of your server. Multiply the number of watts by the days in your billing period by the cost per kW to see how much your server costs:

  • kW x 30 days x $0.00 per kW = energy costs

Energy efficient hardware systems minimize added costs, but they tend to require more upfront investment.

Don't forget to consider the costs of maintaining your server. IT maintenance plans may run monthly or annually and are necessary to prevent downtime in the event of a server issue.

Consider Renting a Server

A server is a recurring investment, and for some businesses, renting or leasing a server makes more sense than managing your own.

By giving up some control of your servers, you eliminate the upfront costs and mitigate repair spending. Your service might also upgrade your server's hardware every five years, which benefits you at no additional cost.

Is Running Your Own Server Worth It?

How much does a typical home server cost? Expect to spend at least $1,000 upfront and then see increased monthly energy and maintenance bills over time.

These costs may seem high, but if you run a home network and need reliability and security, they often pay for themselves.

Got more server questions? Explore more topics on our blog or contact us!

About The Author

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  • Thanks for your informative discussion. Some follow-up questions:
    1. Have reliable server prices gone up or down from $1,000 since your 2017 article, and if so, by how much.
    2. I”m getting very frustrated with GoDaddy hosting my website because some important incoming and outgoing emails are sporadically delayed unpredictably and unreasonably; and I noticed that others have the same issue with no improvement. As the sole user of my computer, who deals with lawyers and other professionals, and who receives at least 70 emails per day and sends up to 15 per day, but often with pdfs of 2mb or more per email, can you guesstimate the range of what my monthly costs for a private server would range:
    (a) for electric and any other utilities?
    (b) for an I.T. guru who I know and trust to install a private server for me and to check on it and tweak it if necessary?
    (c) for other potential maintenance and tweaking costs the first year of ownership of my private server?
    (d) or am I better off renting a private server rather than purchasing one, and if so, what would be a reasonable range of what I should expect to pay:
    (i) monthly and (ii) for any upfront costs.
    Thanks again, and I look forward to your response at your convenience.
    Ken

    • HI Ken!

      Thanks for your comments. We went through some modern server pricing examples in 2019 in our article at: https://blog.servermania.com/choosing-a-small-business-server/ which may be useful for you.

      In general, there is no significant decrease in server purchase pricing and a mid-tier server with sufficient redundancy mechanisms is still in the $1000+ range.

      As for your other questions, the article I quoted above may be useful for you as we do a more thorough breakdown of renting vs. owning a server. Obviously, as a server provider, we wholeheartedly see the value in a rented server for most applications. But I encourage you to book a consultation with us and we can go over the full range of options with you: https://www.servermania.com/free-consultation.htm

      Let me know if you have any other questions!