June 13,2023

How Much Are Home Renovation Costs? Home Remodeling and Renovation Costs Explained

by Jennifer Cameron inHome Furnish

25 of the Biggest Design Mistakes New Homeowners Make

You put on your big girl pants, met with your financial adviser, got a mortgage, and bought a house. Hooray! Now comes the hard part: making it your own. Whether you’re in for a gut renovation or just trying to redecorate, there’s a lot more to designing a property than you might think. We talked to two experts—a renovation consultant and an interior designer—to learn about the most common blunders that new homeowners make, so that you won’t follow in their footsteps.

1. Starting renovations too soon

If possible, live in your house for a while before making any plans to overhaul. “Learn its flow, where the groceries land, where the laundry wants to go, how the sun hits it, where the choke points are, which way the rain slants, even get a sense of its soul,” says Bruce Irving, an independent renovation consultant and real estate agent from Cambridge, Massachusetts. “All of this will inform your choices when you make your plans to change things.”

2. Underestimating costs

Most jobs will cost more and take longer than you expect, so always add 20 percent to what you think a project will total when budgeting “If you don’t have the funds,” cautions Irving, “cut the job back. If you happen to beat these projections, then your surprises are happy ones.”

3. Expecting everything to go according to plan

Work on older buildings can yield a lot of unforeseen events. Who knows what’s behind that wall you’re opening up? New construction is more controlled, but that doesn’t always mean smooth sailing. Be prepared for the unexpected. “It’s a human failing,” says Irving. “We all hope and pray everything goes according to plan.” Trust us: Nothing will.

4. Not hiring a designer from the start

“You are about to spend more than you ever thought possible,” says Irving. “It might as well be for a correctly-designed thing.” Interiors designers and architects typically either charge by the hour or take a percentage of the overall job (say, 10 percent)—a small sum compared your total payout.

5. Going for the lowest bid

“Good professional help is worth the money,” says Irving. “That means design as well as construction.” Be willing to pay for a good contractor, and be wary of the one who’s cheap and available right away.

6. Hiring a professional that’s not a good fit

Just because someone is a good designer doesn’t mean she’ll be a good fit for you. Do you have the same aesthetic? Priorities? “If he or she doesn’t ask you a lot of questions about your needs, desires, and the way you live, find someone else,” says Irving. “Listening skills and curiosity are crucial.”

7. Not asking for references

Irving recommends contacting the previous three clients of anyone you plan to hire. “These people will have experienced the person at his or her current level of achievement and staffing,” he points out. Reach out to general contractors for an architect’s references, and vice-versa. “And visit your candidates’ job sites to find out if you like what you see in terms of cleanliness and vibe.”

8. Waiting too long to consult a general contractor

Ask a contractor to look at plans in the schematic stage, rather than at detailed finished plans, says Irving. “This way you can find out if your project is in the right budget ballpark before falling in love with a plan—and paying for a complete set of biddable drawings. It’s also a good way to meet potential contractors, get their input, and not misuse their time.”

9. Pretending to understand a design scheme

Fact: Most people can’t read blueprints. Instead of eyeballing it, lay out a room or building or garden for real. “Painters tape can be a girl’s best friend,” says Jocelyn Chiappone, interior designer and owner-principal of Digs Design Company in Newport, Rhode Island. Taping out a space works better than any sketch or design app for understanding how things will fit.

10. Not asking enough questions

“Ask lots of questions,” says Irving. “There’s no such thing as a dumb one, and besides, it’s your money you’re spending. You should know why and on what.”

11. Making too many changes along the way

Changes that seem simple to you may require a lot of work on the back end, so be sure you check with your designer or builder on even slight adjustments. “Even moving a light switch a few feet can cost $1,500,” reminds Irving.

12. Not setting up a timeline

Work with your contractor to put together a list of items that need to be purchased and deadlines for making decisions. “The last thing you want is to feel under the gun to make an important fixture selection you’ll later regret,” says Chiappone.

13. Not thinking outside the box, literally

Gutters, grading, and roofs may sound boring when there are chandeliers to obsess over, but you’ve got to build a solid envelope if you want your house to hold up. “If you’re faced with a choice of working on the outside or the inside, start on the outside,” says Irving. “No point in putting in a new floor if the roof is getting set to leak.”

14. Sweeping interiors under the rug

On the other hand, too many times, interiors are an afterthought. Newbies often think they can do finish work themselves or throw their old couch into a new room. But if you want to love your space—and increase its value—make sure you leave room in the budget for working on interior design and décor.

15. Underestimating psychological stressors

“Any building project in your own home is fraught with power dynamics,” says Irving, who suggests that couples take on a smaller project—building a birdhouse, say—first. Seriously. You might be surprised how different your styles, ideas, and approaches are. “It’s happening in your nest, with your dough,” adds Irving, “in large amounts. If you can’t do a smaller project first, you should at least know that it would be better if you did.”

16. Skimping on quality

“Spend good money on things you touch every day,” offers Chiappone, “like door hardware, doors, faucets, appliances, kitchen cabinets. The tactile experience sends a daily reminder to you and your guests about the solidity and quality of your home.”

17. Splurging where you should save

On the flip side, she says, “Don’t get locked into the idea that the biggest items should cost the most.” Nice throw pillows can dress up a mid-range sofa. Or mix a low-end dining table with a statement light fixture. Reglazing tile will be far more cost-effective than a total overhaul. “And sisal rugs are economical and always look chic!” she says.

18. Replacing windows

“Think long and hard before you replace your windows. If they’re original to the house and are in half-decent shape, they can and should be resuscitated,” advises Irving. Adding storm windows can do the trick where it comes to energy-efficiency. “Anyone claiming that you will earn your money back in energy savings by installing replacement windows is either misinformed or looking for your money himself.”

19. Not knowing measurements

Once you know what size couches, tables, and sconces you need, write them down and carry that list with you always. You never know when the perfect item will jump into your path. “Don’t fall in love with a 94-inch sofa when you can only fit an 84,” warns Chiappone.

20. Buying giant furniture

While you’re at it, jot down your door widths, too. “Make sure your new purchases can fit through the front door,” says Chiappone. “You won’t believe how often this gets overlooked.”

21. Buying miniature rugs

Undersized rugs are the most common mistake Chiappone sees. “Your carpet should ground your furniture so that at least the front legs of the upholstery are on the carpet,” she says. “Don’t fret if a standard size doesn’t work. Hit up your local carpet shop—they can make any broadloom into a different size and shape.”

22. Not getting everyone on the same page

“If you are purchasing appliances, lighting, and other items for a renovation, print out all your specs and/or installation instructions,” says Chiappone. “I put them in a binder for the contractor and the subs and keep onsite so everyone has access to these docs.” Bonus tip: “If you were to ever sell or rent your property, this is a valuable tool.”

23. Trying to be your own general contractor

Aside from their experience with construction, materials, and sources, general contractors have something else to offer: accountability. “You don’t have much sway over an electrician,” says Irving. Sub-contractors, however, have relationships with G.C.’s that will suffer if they don’t get the job done right. Sometimes, it’ll work out, especially if your jobs are relatively small. But know that it can be a risk.

24. Spending too much on tech

Technology can be pricey and become outdated quickly. While wiring every room in your house for video might seem cool, it’s not necessarily a great investment. Your home’s next buyer is unlikely to be impressed with an aging system.

25. Working on too many rooms at once

For anyone on a budget all of us) Chiappone suggests focusing on the living areas first. “Doing a little here and there in multiple rooms will only leave you feeling unsettled and frustrated,” she notes. “The place where you spend the most time should really serve as the focus of your energy and investment. When the budget allows, move on to the next space.”

How to Organize Your House Renovation

Judging by the popular shows on DIY Network and HGTV, it takes approximately 24 minutes to renovate a house. Everyone knows this is not true, but this style of fast-shot remodeling presided over by glib hosts takes away from the core notion that home renovation is complex and difficult.

1:40 Click Play to Learn How to Organize Your House Renovation

It's important to understand what you're getting into when you choose a whole home renovation. A look at the elements of a major home renovation will give you a sense of what's involved and help you effectively plan your projects.

Start With Design and Planning

A sketch on a cocktail napkin, full-blown architectural plans, or just a firm set of thoughts about how the remodel should progress is a good place to start. It is cheaper and less frustrating to correct mistakes before the remodel takes physical form. One of the first considerations is to be sure that you have funding for your renovation.

Draw up a simple "yes/no" list of do-it-yourself projects and projects you want professionals to do. Look for contractors and subcontractors for those jobs you do not want to do yourself.

Apply for permits for the jobs you want to do on your own (if necessary). If you're hiring a contractor, they will likely handle the permits for you.

The Spruce / Ulyana Verbytska

Consider the Bigger Projects

The biggest projects you might take on include roof replacement or repair, fixing the foundation, dealing with water infiltration, and installing or repairing windows and siding. Large projects must be done first because subsequent projects are impacted by them.

Protect your future renovation work by making certain the house won't collapse on you. That means addressing the foundation and any structural problems. Secure the foundation and make major foundation repairs to areas such as weakened walls, joists, and carrying beams.

Then look at keeping it dry, which involves the roof, siding, and windows. Repair or replace the roof. Replace seriously damaged windows that may threaten future remodeling work. If not seriously damaged, leave the window repair or replacement for later in the process.

The same goes for siding. If the siding is so damaged that it will allow water infiltration, repair or replace the siding. If not seriously damaged, leave it for later.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Plan for Demolition

You will demolish and dispose of sections of the house that will be replaced by later projects. This is a huge undertaking that many homeowners overlook until the project begins, then they begin scrambling to make up for lost time.

You'll need to rent a large container for waste. Carefully demolish all or some of the areas of the house that will be renovated. Demolish as much as possible if you will not be living in the house.

Warning Exercise caution when demolishing surfaces coated with lead-based paint. Asbestos, which is often common in older homes, can be a serious health hazard as well. It's a very good idea to call in a professional to help with anything that involves asbestos or lead-based paint.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Think About Structural Carpentry

Carpentry that is in support of other work is known as structural carpentry. This can include moving walls, constructing new walls, adding beams to support a greater weight upstairs, punching in new doors (or removing existing doors), adding framing for new construction windows, or significantly enlarging the window openings.

Many of these projects can be undertaken by an enterprising DIYer, but some projects, such as enlarging window openings, might call for a contractor's expertise.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Plan Out HVAC, Electrical, and Plumbing Jobs

These are vital services that need to be installed when the walls and ceiling are open. Open walls and ceilings make it easier for the HVAC company to install ductwork for central heating and air conditioning and for electricians and plumbers to run new electrical and plumbing systems.

Tip In most places, building code requires that only those professionally licensed to do the work can handle this part of the renovation. Carefully check the requirements in your area.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Consider the Windows

Window installation, whether whole-house or partial, almost always plays into a home remodel project. Installing new-construction or replacement windows is a project many homeowners can try, but keep in mind doing it on your own might invalidate the manufacturer's warranty. Check into the requirements and hire a professional if necessary, as that warranty could save you many headaches down the road.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Plan Out Insulation and Drywall

Before the drywall goes up, the insulation must go in. Look at the options for insulation, and plan to use different types for different areas of the house. You'll need it in the walls and attic, and you might be able to do all of it yourself.

Tip Before you close up the walls, you'll need a second inspection from the electrical inspector (and perhaps the plumbing inspector). They will give you the go-ahead to close up the walls.

You'll close up the walls with drywall: hanging it, mudding it, and sanding it. Drywallers hang sheets of drywall, apply drywall compound, and let the compound dry. After drying, they sand it smooth. Sometimes, they will repeat the process until they achieve a seamless surface. With some practice and patience, you might be able to do this on your own.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Brush up on Fine Carpentry Skills

Next comes the carpentry that is not supportive: baseboards, molding, trim around windows and doors, and built-in elements, such as bookcases or breakfast nooks. Fine carpentry gives your house that finished touch.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Move on to Interior Painting, Wallpaper, and Other Finishing Work

Many homeowners can handle the work of painting interior walls, hanging wallpaper, painting molding and trim, or staining and sealing trim. All of these detail-oriented surface finishes should be some of the last items you do indoors, as this work can damage other parts of the process. For instance, should you paint before installing or sanding your flooring or the reverse? This is debatable. Laying flooring first means that paint might get on the flooring. Painting first means that the floor sander may scuff your walls.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Install Flooring

Your final floor covering will vary depending upon the room; for instance, you might choose laminate, solid hardwood, engineered wood, or carpet for various living and bedroom areas and vinyl, tile, or marble for bathrooms and kitchens. No matter what you choose, plan to install the flooring as late as possible in the renovation process. This will save your flooring surface from significant damage.

The Spruce / Margot Cavin

Move to the Exterior

Once the inside is done, or close to it, it's time to work on the exterior of the house. With the house mostly finished, it is safe to put on the gutters and siding. You do not want to do this earlier unless absolutely necessary, because doors and windows may get punched out, thus ruining the exterior job.

Now you can also consider external renovations that might be connected to the house, such as adding a front porch or sunroom. Now is also the time to think about the parts that are entirely separate from the house, such as detached garages or swimming pools.

How Much Are Home Renovation Costs? Home Remodeling and Renovation Costs Explained

Typical Range: $18,161 to $76,367

$18,161 to $76,367 National Average: $46,748

The housing market can be a dog-eat-dog world, and finding a home that fits your needs is challenging. Rather than dealing with the hassle of moving, consider a home renovation project to update your home’s appearance. Not to be confused with a remodel, home renovation usually keeps existing structures in place but updates the materials and surfaces.

The size of the room (or rooms) being renovated, underlying repairs, scope, materials, and labor make up the bulk of home renovation costs. There’s a wide price range of $18,161 to $76,367, with an average of $46,748. Estimating a home renovation cost can be complex, but here are the top factors to determine how much it might cost you to renovate your home.

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Factors in Calculating Home Renovation Costs

The complexity of the room being renovated affects the price range. Repairs and updates to kitchens, bathrooms, or mechanical equipment are costlier home renovations. A kitchen renovation averages $25,000, but a bathroom is $10,000. Basements usually cost around $20,000. Other factors like permits and labor, site preparation, and materials also influence the price.

Permits and Labor

Almost any renovation project that includes additions, electrical or plumbing work, or a major overhaul will require permits, so be sure to check with local authorities. Permits cost $400 to $1,800, on average.

Depending on the scope, a renovation requires multiple different subcontractors. The average hourly cost of any laborer on a construction project ranges between $20 and $150—sometimes more. General contractor fees usually account for 10 to 20 percent of the total budget.


Costs can vary up to 40 percent between regions. Current construction markets differ from state to state, which affects the total price. Urban areas typically have the highest construction costs.

Home Size and Number and Types of Rooms

As with most projects, the larger the space, the higher the cost. According to HomeAdvisor, a 1,000-square-foot home could be renovated for around $19,000, but a 3,000- to 4,000-square- foot home costs between $75,000 and $100,000. More bedrooms do not always correlate to a higher price, though. A bedroom costs less to renovate ($10 to $25 per square foot) than a kitchen ($100 to $250 per square foot).

Type of Build

Not all living spaces are created equal. The cost to renovate a condo averages $40 to $125 per square foot, but an apartment averages $25 to $60. Historic homes always cost more to renovate due to the extra care needed to preserve original materials or re-create the original appearance with updated materials. A historical renovation typically costs $100 to $400 per square foot.


Site Preparation

Depending on the scope of the project, it may be necessary to prepare the site for construction whether it be removing landscaping or clearing space to access the house. If significant work is required to prepare the site, expect to pay between $1,200 and $4,000.


The range of material prices for a home renovation has almost no bounds. From nails to paint to countertops to appliances, materials make up the bulk of home renovation costs. The finish and quality of materials can also influence the cost to renovate any space.

Additional Costs and Considerations

A home renovation project can be complex or straightforward, and sometimes it can turn into a full-blown house remodeling adventure. It’s not uncommon for unexpected costs to pop up while planning a renovation. You may need to hire an architect to assist with planning a structural adjustment, or you could discover a problem with the foundation that must be addressed. Here are several other considerations for home renovation costs to help guide your planning process.

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Home Age

It’s no secret that older homes tend to hide structural or mechanical issues that must be addressed when they’re discovered. An old house might have great bones, but updating electrical wiring to current safety standards is a good (and sometimes necessary) idea that could save you money in the long run. Add approximately 20 percent to your total budget for unforeseen costs.

Structural Changes

If structural changes are planned, consult with an engineer to ensure load-bearing walls are appropriately handled. Expect to pay $300 to $700 for a consultation and plan review. On average, removing walls will cost between $300 and $10,000. Non-load-bearing walls cost less to remove.

Hiring an Architect

You might find the planning process much easier for more complex renovation projects if you hire an architect early on. Your ideas can come to life with the help of an architect who can recommend current trends, upgrades, structural needs, and more. An architect is also helpful as a cost estimator who can determine a rough estimate on expected costs. Architects usually charge between $125 and $250 per hour.

Electrical, Plumbing, and HVAC Systems

Some renovation projects begin with an intention to upgrade mechanical systems for better efficiency or reliability. Updating plumbing, wiring, and HVAC systems improve home value in the long run. A typical plumbing job costs $300, electrical work costs $350, and installing a new HVAC system runs between $500 and $7,200.


“Foundation problems” is likely the most dreaded phrase to hear during any home construction project. Any issues with a foundation will push the renovation costs to the high end of the estimate, which is why a budget cushion is helpful. If major foundation problems exist—along with roof and mechanical issues—it’s sometimes cheaper to demolish and rebuild. Consult with your contractor to determine the best solution for you.


Changing the Floor Plan of the Home

The cost to adjust the floor plan can range from between $750 and $3,000 and up. Since floor plans affect the foundation and structural components, you’ll need to consult a structural engineer. Additions usually require a building permit from your city, and some cities may require an architect, too. A floor plan change will require an update to nearly every system from wiring to HVAC and finishing work to make it suitable.


Upgrading appliances is another common reason to begin a home renovation. New appliances can cost between $200 and $10,000. An array of options are available, and it’s easy to get carried away, especially with kitchen appliances. From six-burner stoves to smart fridges, consider what meets your needs and expectations to stay within your budget.

Home Renovation Costs: Types of Renovations

Major home renovation projects are not for the faint of heart. Home renovation costs quickly add up, problems arise, and home life is disrupted. But the satisfaction of seeing your home transformed into a fresh, functional space is the ultimate reward. There are several types of renovations to consider to update an existing house.


Renovation costs can run the gamut. A typical 2,500-square-foot house could cost between $15,000 and $200,000. For under $45,000, you could update paint, trim, flooring, counters, and landscaping. A price of $46,000 to $70,000 covers a kitchen or bathroom remodel along with upgraded flooring. More than $71,000 extends to cabinet upgrades and structural or system upgrades.

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Historic Home

Historic homes can be a fun challenge. Expect to spend around $100 to $400 per square foot to renovate a historic home properly. These homes typically require structural, mechanical, and system updates along with cosmetic improvements. If the house is in a historic district, check for renovation restrictions. In some cases, grants are available to assist with the associated costs of renovation or upkeep.

Gut and Remodel

In some cases, a full gut and remodel is necessary when the floor plan is wholly redesigned, or if the mechanical systems need a total upgrade. All that’s usually left in a gutted house are studs and foundation. It typically costs $100,000 to $200,000 or $100 to $200 per square foot to demolish and rebuild an older home. An interior gut may only cost up to $10,000 to remove furnishings, appliances, and drywall.

Rehabbing a Home

Rehabbing a home is similar to a gut and remodel but slightly less extensive. It focuses on repairs and cleanup for houses that need significant renovation. A typical range for rehabbing a home is $20 to $50 per square foot or $20,000 to $75,000.


Home Additions

Adding on to an existing home is a common renovation or remodeling project that can be costly since it touches almost every aspect of building a home, including walls, rooflines, wiring, HVAC, plumbing, and cosmetics. The average cost to build a home addition is $21,000 to $70,000, but the price can increase dramatically depending on the extent of the addition. Adding a new bathroom costs $18,000 to $47,000 on average.

Do I Need a Home Renovation?

The idea of disrupting home life or getting a renovation loan just to complete a major renovation could be enough to prevent some homeowners from taking the leap. A renovation isn’t for everyone, and it’s not always the best option cost-wise; however, you might discover that it’s the perfect option for your family. Renovating an existing home allows you to experience added comfort and luxury, avoid the hassle of moving, improve your home’s energy efficiency, and increase your home’s value.

Increased Comfort and Better Aesthetics

You spend a lot of time in your home, especially if it’s also your work space. Why not invest in making your private space more comfortable, functional, and enjoyable? Living in a home that suits your style and needs can positively affect your overall health. Home renovation doesn’t just have to be about resale value. If a room or system has always bothered you, update it and alleviate that nagging stress.

Increased Home Vaue

Any significant improvement on a home boosts the property value. That’s money right back in your pocket someday when you decide to sell. An outdated kitchen is a primary deterrent for many prospective home buyers. A kitchen renovation improves ROI (return on investment) by 83 percent, and a bathroom renovation by at least 65 percent or more.


Enhanced Safety and Improved Accessibility

It’s safe to assume most people would prefer to choose a renovation project rather than be forced to complete one due to damage or disrepair. In some cases, renovation cannot be put off for long. Faulty electrical wiring, roof leaks, broken appliances, or storm damage are just a few reasons homeowners should start a renovation project. Safety is a top priority when it comes to deciding on a renovation.

Increased Efficiency

Upfront costs of buying a house are one thing to consider, but many home buyers also factor in long-term energy costs. Monthly costs to maintain a comfortable home add up over time. Even if you don’t plan to sell a house soon, consider renovating some mechanical systems to improve the efficiency of your house and lower bills. New double-pane windows, added insulation, or an updated HVAC system improve efficiency.

Repairing Existing Damage

Sometimes a house has sustained some damage that doesn’t affect efficiency or function, but it’s still important to repair any damage to keep property value high. A home that’s always kept in good shape will bring more value to a sale.

Selling Your Home

If you know you won’t stay in your home forever, updating the interior might be a great idea to improve the resale value. A home estimate can help identify areas that would provide the best ROI. Some homeowners do this frequently as house flippers. In this case, it’s best to choose styles, colors, and trends that appeal to the current market in your region.

Selling your home? A home renovation can boost resale value. Get free, no-commitment project estimates from contractors, builders, painters, and more near you. Find a Pro +

Home Renovation Costs: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional

A plethora of home improvement shows have convinced many homeowners that home renovation is a reasonably straightforward operation that any reasonable person could complete. In some cases, that’s true. Not every renovation includes major structural work. If the renovation is more cosmetic, you might be comfortable painting, installing a medicine cabinet, putting up a kitchen backsplash, or replacing a faucet. These projects don’t require permitting or structural considerations, and they can usually be done in a short time frame.

Sadly, up to 63 percent of DIYers regret large renovation projects that took excessive time to complete or were done improperly due to lack of knowledge. Any renovation that includes changes to floor plans, structures, or mechanical systems will likely require a building permit from local authorities. In many states, significant renovations that touch structures, roofs, electrical or gas, or foundations require a contractor’s oversight to ensure all building codes are followed. Home additions can be nearly as complex as building a home.

Beyond legal restrictions regarding DIY renovations, the biggest reason you’ll want to hire a pro is peace of mind. An architect and contractor have the know-how to bring your dream to life. You won’t have to stress about scheduling multiple subcontractors, organizing deliveries, or solving problems. A contractor should have warranties against future issues as well. Contractors can also identify ways to save money by sourcing materials through wholesale dealers or offering alternate suggestions. Home renovation costs are well invested in a qualified contractor.


How to Save Money on Home Renovation Costs

Considering a major renovation can be daunting as you establish what the project will entail. Sticking to a budget only complicates the situation. But there are several areas where you can save on your home renovation.

Get multiple quotes. Take the time to compare prices to make sure you get what you need for your budget.

Take the time to compare prices to make sure you get what you need for your budget. Focus on efficiency, not size. An interior designer can help you maximize available space to improve the function and feel of a kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom without having to expand the space.

An interior designer can help you maximize available space to improve the function and feel of a kitchen, bathroom, or bedroom without having to expand the space. Do your own demo day. Save on labor by doing your own demolition—just make sure you don’t accidentally take out a load-bearing wall or another essential feature.

Save on labor by doing your own demolition—just make sure you don’t accidentally take out a load-bearing wall or another essential feature. Take long-term savings into account. In some cases, spending a little more upfront can save on maintenance and repairs down the road.

In some cases, spending a little more upfront can save on maintenance and repairs down the road. Ask for a one-time consultation. Many architects can meet with you one time and sketch out a design plan that’s sufficient for a builder or drafting service to create plans.

Many architects can meet with you one time and sketch out a design plan that’s sufficient for a builder or drafting service to create plans. Choose look-alike products. Imitation materials have come a long way. Things like laminate flooring often look as good as hardwood.

Imitation materials have come a long way. Things like laminate flooring often look as good as hardwood. Avoid moving the sink or toilet. Rerouting the plumbing on a toilet or kitchen sink can quickly raise the renovation price. Leave them in place and update the room around them.

Rerouting the plumbing on a toilet or kitchen sink can quickly raise the renovation price. Leave them in place and update the room around them. Make decisions early. Changing your mind or not having a plan can increase the materials cost midway through a project.

Changing your mind or not having a plan can increase the materials cost midway through a project. Opt for open shelving. Kitchen cabinets are a money pit. They’re great value, but if you want to save money and have a unique kitchen, consider using open shelving instead.

Kitchen cabinets are a money pit. They’re great value, but if you want to save money and have a unique kitchen, consider using open shelving instead. Consider donating used items. Debris disposal costs money. Consider donating removed items in good shape to Habitat for Humanity instead.

Debris disposal costs money. Consider donating removed items in good shape to Habitat for Humanity instead. Check for federal grants. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) can assist in renovating a home for disabled persons. Veterans are also eligible for housing grants.

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) can assist in renovating a home for disabled persons. Veterans are also eligible for housing grants. Purchase floor models. With some hunting, you can find discounts on appliance floor models in-store or online.

Questions to Ask About Home Renovation Costs

The steps involved in a home renovation are complex and confusing for first-time renovators. Talking openly with your general contractor can help clear up questions and avoid miscommunication on home renovation costs.


How much does a house cost compared to a whole-house renovation?

Is it cheaper to renovate or gut and remodel?

How long will my project take to complete?

Will you obtain all building permits?

Do you hire and pay for subcontractors?

Will they come to my house to inspect the job and provide an estimate?

Are your crews licensed and insured?

Have you completed many home renovations like this before?

Do you typically have cost overruns?

Are we on the same page about this idea?

Can we review the estimate line by line?

My house was built in the 80s. What kind of problems do you expect we might find?

What if I change my mind about a design partway through the project? What will that cost me?

What kind of payment structure do you require?

How do you handle challenges or material delays?

What kind of warranties do you provide?


Home renovation costs aren’t straightforward or one-size-fits-all, so it’s common to have lots of questions. Just below are a few frequently asked questions and answers about home renovation costs here.

Q. Is it cheaper to remodel or build?

In most cases, it’s cheaper to remodel a house than build. The exception is if there are significant structural challenges with the foundation, roof, or mechanical systems. Have a building inspector assess the house to understand the areas in disrepair, then talk with a few contractors to get an idea of the costs involved.

Q. What is the average cost for home renovation?

The national average to renovate a home is $46,748, but it’s not a firm number at all. Some homeowners might consider a renovation to be updating faucets and fixtures, while others consider adding a bathroom a renovation. Home renovation cost is dependent on the materials, room type, and project scope.


Q. Should I renovate or sell my house?

This is a personal decision to make. Leaving your house and neighborhood can be a difficult decision to make, and finding a new home can be a hassle. The cost of most renovations will still be less than the cost of buying a house, so it’s worth considering renovating your house to meet your needs if you have the time, space, and money to do so.

Sources: HomeAdvisor, HomeGuide, Thumbtack

  • Jennifer Cameron
  • June 13,2023

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