Home Renovation Costs


Image showing a home renovation in England
A home renovation project in England. Photo © Colin Grice (cc-by-sa/2.0)

How Much Do Home Renovations Cost?


Home renovation covers a multitude of projects. It can mean simply decorating through the house or a full renovation with new kitchen, bathrooms and extra rooms. If you are thinking about buying a rundown house for renovation or just want to enhance your existing house the crucial question is how much will it cost?

Depending on the project home renovations can cost a couple of thousand pounds or tens of thousands. Elements that can influence costs are the size of the property, the age and condition of the property and whether or not major structural work is needed.

One of the most important points to emphasise is that you should have a budget and stick to it if you want your building or renovation project to be successful. In this article we will look at some of the factors involved in home renovations costs.

Is It A Good Idea To Renovate A House?


If you are planning to stay in your house for five years or more you may decide that renovating is a good idea simply for your own comfort. However, if you are doing a renovation to increase value before selling there are some caveats.

Certain improvements, such as new windows, will always add value to a property but the value of your home will also depend on many other factors such as location and the age of the property. In other words, home renovations are not always a magic fix to increase the value of your home.

For example, adding a downstairs cloakroom is one of the most popular changes people make to their houses. A cloakroom can cost around £2,500 and can add as much as £10,000 to the value of a home. Conversely, changing a small bedroom into an en-suite to the master bedroom may not improve the value as you are losing an entire room.

Before starting any renovations it is most important to make sure that the structure of the property is safe. Concentrate on issues such as damp, the roof and safe electrics before starting any cosmetic changes. If required, commission a damp survey or talk to a professional property surveyor.

See also: How to buy renovation property at auction

Budgeting For A Home Renovation

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When calculating home renovation costs you might want to adjust your spending so that the end result brings the value of your home in line with others in the district. Some of the projects that add the greatest value to a property are an extra bedroom (12%), conservatory (6%), new kitchen (10%) and new bathroom (5%). Unless the changes are for your own benefit stick to standard products as high end fixtures will not necessarily add extra value to your home.

Bringing in an expert is essential if you are making huge changes to a property and a professional will be able to help you avoid unexpected costs. Unless you plan on doing the work yourself get multiple quotations (not estimates which can change). If you are doing some of the work leave the serious stuff to the professionals. Unless you are completely confident of your abilities get experts for plumbing, electrical work and structural changes.

It is not unusual for the best laid plans to change so keep a reserve of 10% in case your home renovation project does run over budget.

The Cost Of New Central Heating


Heating a home is very important and can waste a large amount of money if the heating system is very old and inefficient. This is one of the most important home renovation projects you can do to your house. So, is it worth replacing an old heating system and how much does new central heating actually cost?

Changing from electric storage heaters to gas central heating can save you hundreds of pounds each year. Installing new gas central heating to a two bedroom property is typically around £2,500. For a larger 4/5 bedroom house the cost would be around £4,500. As always prices in London and the South are usually a little higher.

The latest gas central heating systems are between three and four times cheaper to run than an electric heating system so the outlay will soon be recouped. Even in the first year you will see the benefits with lower heating bills.

House Renovation FAQ

Where Do I Start On A Home Renovation?

Make a decision about what you want to achieve. Work out a budget and then get several quotations. Decide if you want to do some of the work yourself and whether you can continue to live at home while the renovations are underway. Make sure that you keep to the budget and have the appropriate insurance.

Can I Add An Extension To My House?

Changes in 2020 to planning regulations mean you can add an extension up to 8 metres without planning permission if your house is detached. You cannot add an extension to a flat or maisonette or if the building has been converted from another use without a planning application. There are other caveats such as protected areas so consult your local authority before starting any building work.

Is It Expensive To Rewire A Home?

Any house over 25 years old may need rewiring. If you are unsure about your home you can get an inspection which will cost between £150 and £200. Typical costs for rewiring a detached house are between £3,000 and £5,000. The cost for small flat is nearer to £2,500.


New Kitchens And Bathrooms


Installing a new kitchen is often a priority as the kitchen is often at the heart of a home. The costs for this kind of home renovation varies and will depend upon the appliances and fittings you choose. There are some designer brands that will run into many thousands before you even pay anything out to have them fitted. Typically, home renovation costs for fitting a new standard kitchen come to around £8,000.

Even though the costs of standard bathroom suites can be lower than in the past, installing a new bathroom can be expensive if you want the latest gadgets. The average cost in the UK for a standard bathroom suite is around £4,500. If you want extras like a whirlpool bath or a wet room the costs will be higher. Again, costs for London and the South are typically between 10% and 20% higher.

Adding An Extra Room To Your Home

The cost of building an extra room or extension on your property will vary depending upon what you actually want. A simple single storey extension is estimated to cost between £1,350 and £1,950 per square metre. Prices for London and the South East are higher due to higher salaries.

In addition to this cost you will need to factor in fees for an architect, planning permission for your extension, a structural engineer and VAT. Therefore, the total cost could be between £40,000 (UK rates) and £67,000 (London rates). Adding a two storey extension will cost another 50% resulting in a total cost of around £76,000 in any area except London.

Costs For Replacing A Roof On A House

Home renovations costs for a new roof are dependant upon the size and the structure of the existing roof. Average UK prices for roof replacement are between £5,000 and £16,000. However, a large family house could cost as much as £20,000 with prices in London and the South even higher. This price would include labour and materials but would not cover the cost of any remedial or additional structural works.

If you are intending to replace the whole roof instead of repairing some part of it you would need to submit a building regulations application. A new roof will have to be inspected to ascertain that it is safe under the fire regulations. Costs for a building application are between £300 and £500.

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