Whether you want to breathe new life into your property and convert it into something better suited to your tastes, or you want to increase the value of a property so you can sell it on for a profit later, costing up your home renovations accurately can be difficult. However, with proper planning and preparation, you can come up with a reasonable budget for the works. Coming up with an exact figure for the cost of your renovations is rarely possible, but you should be able to come up with a reasonable ballpark figure.
Deciding Whether To Renovate Property or not
Before you commit to any renovation project, you should first ensure that renovation is right for you. Whether you are considering renovating a property that you are currently living in, or you are thinking about buying a property in order to renovate it and sell it on later, there are a number of things that you need to think about beforehand. Of course, the cost of the renovation is an important factor, but they are not the only factors to bear in mind.
For example, some homes, particularly older properties, are listed buildings and require special permission in order to be modified. Carrying out even minor renovations on these properties can often be difficult and expensive. However, there are also many older properties that are considerably cheaper than their newer counterparts to buy and renovate; it depends entirely on the history of the property and exactly how old it is.
If you are buying property to renovate and plan on selling the renovated property further down the line, you should check the highest selling prices for properties in the local area. This will give you an indication of the absolute maximum that you can expect for your renovated property. This enables you to set realistic limits on how much you spend.
Of course, if you are going to keep living in the property in the long-term, then you don’t need to worry as much about the economics of your renovations. However, you will still want to make sure that you don’t go overboard in your spending. There is nothing more disastrous than getting halfway through your home renovations and then running into a problem that sends your costs spiralling and leaves you in the lurch.
How Much Does It Cost To Renovate A House?
The costs of renovating a house can vary dramatically according to a variety of factors. Before you commit to any renovation works, you should establish what costs you have and how much you can expect them to amount to in total. The bad news is that establishing an exact figure is much more difficult. Some of your costs will be fixed, but others will vary. Consulting with contractors beforehand will give you an idea of how much they are likely to charge. But even if you put together a detailed budget beforehand, you should still leave yourself a little headroom to account for any unexpected costs.
Below we have outlined the most significant costs that you will be facing and what you need to know about each of them.
Administrative Costs during property renovation
When working your costs out, it is important to not only consider the costs of material and labour, but to also factor in the administrative costs that come with renovating a property. Exactly what these costs are and how much they will run to will depend on both the property itself and the nature of the renovations that you want to carry out. You may also need to pay for design work and blueprints before you can begin renovating. These are all costs that you need to factor into your budget.
In terms of administrative costs, the first thing you need to consider is insurance. Not every regular building insurance policy will cover large-scale renovation projects. If you are planning on making significant structural changes to a property and or leaving it vacant for an extended period, then it is less likely that your buildings insurance policy will cover you. If your buildings insurance policy does not allow for the kind of work that you want to undertake, then you might want to consider taking out specialist renovation insurance, which should also provide cover for public liability and employer liability. This means that if anyone is injured on your property during renovations, you will have some legal protection.
Planning Permission and Property renovation
Planning permission is another potentially significant cost that you need to factor in when working out how much to renovate a house. If you want to carry out work on a listed property, then you will need to secure the appropriate planning permission beforehand. If you fail to secure proper permission and press ahead with your renovations anyway, you could be forced to remove them later or face a hefty financial penalty. It is also important that you understand exactly what you do and don’t have permission for after you apply. Planning permission will only give you the right to undertake the works you specified in your planning application.
Submitting a planning application in England costs £206. The price varies in Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales, so make sure you check with your local authority. Before you submit your application, you can get an idea of how likely it is to be successful by either calling in a local designer or builder to advise you or by asking your local authority for pre-application advice. This pre-application advice usually costs you around half of what you pay for the application itself.
Adding An Extension
One of the most common home renovations is the addition of an extension. Extending your home can give you more space to work with and can also significantly increase the value of your property. When you are establishing the costs of an extension, there are a number of things that you need to consider.
In general, a 4m x 5m extension should cost around £30,000 – £44,000. However, this only accounts for the costs of the building and doesn’t include VAT or other project management fees.
Instead of building an extension on their home, many people are turning to loft conversions instead. By converting a loft, it is possible to add another room to your home without needing to undertake major building works. Properties that were constructed before 1960 are the best candidates for loft conversions because the loft space will not be overrun with trusses, which are a common feature of properties built after this time.
Undertaking a room in roof conversion is one of the easiest and least labour-intensive ways of adding the rooms to your property. In most cases, all you will need to do is add a set of stairs to provide access to the loft and redo the flooring and electrics. Once that is in place, adding insulation and plastering the room is then a relatively simple affair.
For the most basic kind of loft conversion, you can expect to pay anywhere between £1,150 and £1,350 per square metre. If your conversion requires you to redo your roof, remove trusses, or undertake other alterations first, you should budget for £1500 per square metre.
Going Open Plan
Open plan properties are en vogue right now, as they are considered chic and modern. This is an especially popular type of renovation for period houses, which lend themselves very well to an open-plan design. Listed buildings will require special permission, which can potentially be quite expensive in itself.
Before you commit yourself to an open-plan design, you need to ensure that it is viable for your property. If going open plan is going to require you to add supports to your home while also removing walls, then that’s going to increase your costs. Non-load bearing walls can generally be removed without issue.
If you want to go open-plan, then you will need to shell out £500-£100 for an independent RICS survey. On top of this, there is the standard £172 planning application fee and the roughly £3,000 cost of knocking down walls and adding a rolled steel joist. Removing walls in a Grade II listed property will cost £5,000. You may also need to hire a skip, which adds another £120 – £350 to the cost.
If you are planning extensive renovations to a property, you should be prepared for your costs to rise unexpectedly. No matter how carefully you plan things out, there is always the scope for the unexpected and for things to go wrong. The best way of compensating for this is to always assume the maximum price and then leave a little wiggle room on top of this.
It is always best to consult with experienced professionals to get accurate costs. If you are working on a tight budget and can’t afford to hire any kind of consultant to help you out, make sure to research beforehand. Most reputable contractors will do their own due diligence to ensure that the job is realistic for them before they commit to it.