For most of us – buying a home will be the most expensive item we buy in our lifetime. Knowing that, it begs the question: how can we stand to profit from such an investment of our hard-earned resources? Usually, the conversation stops there… because it requires another investment – of which for most of us the cost is totally ambiguous. How much does it cost to completely renovate a house? And what should I focus on first? That is, helpfully, a chicken and egg scenario…
House Renovation: Where Do I Start?
A wise person once said the best place to start is – at the beginning. Before we start to work out the cost of your home renovation, how much do you have to spend? Are you using your savings or are you going to release some equity from your home and plunder the profits down the line? Perhaps it’s a combination of both. Once you have your budget – with an added contingency of around 10% (because as much as we all try to plan, it’s better to be prepared when something goes off-script) you can start to plan your pathway to the home you deserve, the home you always dreamed of, the (insert hyperbole here) home you can imagine.
What Should I Prioritise?
Let’s start by looking at what adds more value. According to most estate agents, there are two key solutions to adding value to your beloved home. Converting your loft space into living space (ie a bedroom) and extending your kitchen. It’s not rocket science, but there it is in black and white. These are the two types of project which will bring the highest returns.
Beyond this what else is going to bring value to the price of your home and the quality of your life? Bathroom upgrades are next on the list – adding that extra en-suite or shower room can make a huge difference to your life or those of potential buyers.
Once you’ve got this in the bag, you’ll want to make sure the windows and doors are in the same league because if they’re not, they can really negate a lot of the progress you will have already made by this point. Depending on the layout of the property you may be able to improve the flow of your home by taking down an interior wall and opening up the space, bringing through more natural light in this way or through additional windows. After all, a light property is an expensive property.
If we like cherries on our cakes and money in our pocket then it goes without saying that you mustn’t overlook the importance of the freshly painted property, renewed or freshly painted skirtings and architraves and then there are the bits that you don’t see, like the heating system – is a combi boiler the best system for you? Do we have enough socket points and lighting in your home or do we need to refresh your pipes and wires?
I wonder if all of this will have run your imagination into hyperdrive – if it has don’t worry, that’s good! You need to consider all aspects of your home renovation and cost is just another part of the process.
House Renovation Cost: Show Me The Numbers
London Loft Conversions
This is probably the most expensive home renovation you will endeavor to complete, comparable only with an extension – but! As there is always, a ‘but’, it all depends on what exactly you decide to have done. Some properties will have the possibility of simply renovating the interior of the attic space so it goes from being the wasted space to a living space, laying the floor, plastering the walls, decorating, adding electricity points and lights, and heating. This type of renovation in London can be achieved for a minimum ballpark figure of £15k (although please don’t assume this is a quote!). This entry stage of loft conversion is covered by permitted development (check with your local council), making it quicker and easier to achieve.
However, as the specification grows, so does the price due to the skills required to complete the job. It is advised that you seek the professional consultation of an architect before you begin the process. These consultation fees are dependent on the company you approach, so do some research but ultimately the up-front fees shouldn’t put you off the pursuit of this dream as an architect will manage the entire project for you, from planning permission to the construction and installation with your chosen contracting team.
Dormer loft extensions can add some space, don’t require extensive construction, and can be done on permitted development depending on your local council which will immediately bring down the cost. These will generally cost somewhere between £20,000 – £35,000. They serve the purpose however you need to decide if they complement the aesthetic of your home, and this can impact the value.
You will need planning permission and architectural assistance if you need to increase the height of the room, lower the floor, and extend the gable wall (exterior wall supporting the roof). This type of construction will set you back £40,000 as a bare minimum – however, this will reap you the biggest rewards. Not only will your architect and construction team work with you to maintain the original appearance of the building (as is often required to satisfy planning permission) the result will maximise the potential within your property in terms of space acquired and the increase in value within your property. This space could become a new master bedroom with an en-suite, a new home cinema with integrated smart technology, or even a home gym! The possibilities really are open to your imagination at this point and at TeamMax we prefer to do things this way – properly, or not at all.
What About The Kitchen?
On the TeamMax website, you will see that one of our services is renovating a kitchen – and we’ve already illustrated Things To Consider when renovating your kitchen but beyond that, you will want to consider first how much your budget, then you will want to identify what is the purpose of having an extended kitchen? Is it to promote the heart of the home, with extra space for the children to work while the dinner is prepared, a space for the family to congregate for meals and space to relax thereafter? Or is it functional space you’re after? Do you need the extra larder space, or would you like more space to prepare your meals, with space for a dishwasher maybe? Once this is clarified in your mind, you can better assess the cost of your home renovation.
In terms of getting the permission to build your extension, you can do it without planning permission, under the same permitted development laws that cover the extension or conversion of your loft space, it is slightly cheaper and slightly faster than applying with planning permission, but it does limit your options for what you can build. You can consider planning permission or a certificate of lawful development will set you back circa £200. Planning permission could be dependent on a further tree report (£200), flood risk assessment (£600+), ecology report (£700+), archaeological report (maybe, ££££’s) or a historic building report, prices vary. Building regulation approval will start at around £250.
On extensions, depending on the specification, you can expect to spend between £1,500 to £3,000 per M2 on the build costs. Depending on the state of the ground, you may need more for the foundations, but that will come down to the building surveyors’ report.
You’ll need to consider other professional costs going into your extension too, for example, the:
- Planning drawings, from £2k to £4k
- Survey of the property, from £150 to £1500
- Construction drawings, from £2k to £4k
- Structural engineer, from £500 to £1000
Now you need to consider the work going into the kitchen, and the following figures are just rough guidelines which all vary upon the size of the new building, but costs to keep in mind:
- Redesigning the interior layout, including removal of old furniture and preparing for the new fittings to go in, £1000 per m2.
- Kitchen furniture, with integrated appliances from £4500 to £10,000.
- Underfloor heating installation £1000 plus, dependant on the cover of the floor area, mat kits costing around £50 per m2
- Electricity first and second fix, circa £3000
- Plumbing first and second fix, circa £2500
- Decorating, circa £150 per day not including materials
- Tiling, the amount differs from each individual kitchen, but you should budget for £50m2 for the tiles and the workmanship at £250 per day depending on the project.
When we take a look at adding or improving bathrooms, the cost is smaller and more palatable, let’s say, but it can vastly improve the mood of the home and influence buyers to put their money on the table.
Every floor with bedrooms should have a bathroom or a WC at least, so keep that in mind if you choose to extend your property or convert the loft in your property. On the TeamMax website, we have a whole article on Things to Consider concerning bathroom renovation, check it out for some inspiration. If you can achieve an open space with some sense of luxury, you could add 5% to the price of your property and it is going to improve the quality of your life dramatically while you live there. Consider tiled flooring with underfloor heating. Done well by able and qualified workers, this is going to add some wow factor, plus you can add space by adding a recessed shelf unit, recessed cabinets, and concealing the plumbing inside the walls with a wall-hung toilet or wall-mounted taps.
Walk-in showers express luxury and expensive taste while a smaller space can be converted into a wet room which will still give you functionality and value.
You may well know by now, that the cost depends on many variables. For a full redesign, tiling, replacing the white goods, decorating, and lighting, you need to budget £6k – £9k for the manual labour and £2k – £8k for the components.
Opening Up Your Home
Consider combining rooms in your home, such as the kitchen and dining room to make a kitchen diner and redecorate to match and suddenly your home will appear so much larger and give that wow factor to potential buyers. This will only cost you a few thousand to do it right.
Replacing Old Windows And Doors
Double glazing is a must, although you should try to make sure the new windows match the style of the house, otherwise this can create an eyesore and detract from the value of the house. Double glazed windows can cost anywhere from £200 to £800 depending on your chosen style, location, and size. Of course, as we move on to new technologies, more options are coming to the market, be aware of smart home designs and how you can change your environment with the click of a button.
Electrics and Plumbing
Rewiring the electrics may be essential if it hasn’t been done for a number of years. You should be able to tell by looking at the old fuse box, which you can replace with a residual consumer unit. While doing this, you can update the lighting, making it brighter but with more subtlety – for example adding LED strip lighting over worktops underneath cabinets in your kitchen and you can also take the opportunity to add more sockets around the house which can in turn – add more value. The plumbing meanwhile can also have an effect on the value of your property. Over years of use, the pipes become furred which can lead to below average water flow rate. You should contemplate a pressurized system or a combi boiler for hot water on demand. These developments are incredibly invasive though, so be aware that you should get this done before the decorating or installation stage of your project. This work can be completed for between £8k – £10k.
So… What Now?
Now is the time to reflect, and consider what it is that you want to achieve, what are you selling? Are you settling? Then you must consider your budget and then start planning. This is the most exciting part and not something you get to work on all the time. Enjoy the design stage, take your time and take your time to find the professionals who want to work on your project with you as much as you do. After all, you can’t do it alone, so find partners who share your enthusiasm and will help you through the dark days, as they will come. They may cost more, but in the end, the cost of renovating your home will reflect on the value of your home.