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Should you renovate an existing house or build a new one?

by | Nov 4, 2022 | Everyday life, Pre-build preparations, Renovation | 0 comments

In total, it is better to build a new house if you are someone who has a stable income, like modern styles, have planned commitments throughout the day, like security, do not like surprises, do not calculate… otherwise, if you are someone who occasionally earn more, likes classic styles, has flexible working hours, likes challenges, are not afraid of surprises, has an entrepreneurial spirit… then renovation is the right option for you!

If you are in a situation where you need to make a decision on whether to build a new or renovate an old house (whether you own it or buying a fixer upper), keep in mind that the decision should primarily suit your personality because, and it will be shown below, there are many pros and cons for both options and there is no universal answer.

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Do you need more time to renovate an old or build a new house?

The first answer that comes up is that renovation is faster because you just don’t start from scratch. This is true but there are a number of exceptions. The point is that the total time required for both the preparatory work and the construction itself must be observed. And it is in these preparatory works at the renovation that many problems can arise. We will list only some that must be taken into account:

  • bad foundations
  • load-bearing walls intended for demolition
  • occurrence of pests
  • bad installations
  • special permits

It should be added that today there are construction techniques that are extremely fast and significantly shorten the time to move in compared to what you might expect.

Is it cheaper to build a new or renovate an old house?

If you are renovating a house that you own, it is almost impossible that it will cost you more than building a new one, especially if you are buying a plot of land. However, keep in mind that the cost of renovation is much more difficult to calculate in advance than the cost of construction and that the actual cost may differ significantly from the starting price. Again, if you are renovating your own home you are less likely to incur unexpected expenses.

What is harder to build a new or renovate an old house?

The smaller amount of work implies that it is easier to plan and organize a renovation than to start from scratch. If we add to this the fact that with some renovations (most often when working in stages, i.e. room by room) it is possible to stay and live in the house, then this is definitely an advantage on the side of renovation.

Which is more cost-effective, to build or to renovate?

As a general rule we can say that newly built houses are more expensive than old ones, according to statistics. However, most of the old houses on the market have not been renovated. This means that it is almost certain that the money you invested in the construction, at the very least, you will be able to return, even to earn a little, from the sale. When renovating, the scale may go on both sides.

It is one thing how much money we need to build or renovate a house into a dream home, but it is quite another how much value we have created. It is determined by the market. Even though you have no plans to resell this is something to keep in mind when making a decision.

Which is the overall result of the renovation compared to the new build?

The total result of the construction of a new facility will almost certainly be higher than with the renovation. The reason lies in the fact that much more compromise is needed when renovating and there are many more limitations.

Which is the overall result of the renovation compared to the new build

What is the environmental aspect of renovation and new construction?

The construction of a new house enables the use of renewable materials, clean construction techniques, the design of energy efficient (and even passive) object and generally minimal impact on the environment. On the other hand, this increases the cost of construction so much that, still, very few people decide to do so. When everything is taken into account, renovation is usually more environmentally friendly.

Which gives a better sense of coziness – renovation or construction?

Although there are numerous examples of brilliantly executed new construction projects, when it comes to coziness, the advantage on the side of renovated buildings is clear. Old bricks, old beams, old floors, ceramics… all this, when renewed, serves like new, but the appearance evokes associations with the good old days and emotions that contribute to the warmth of home.

How does the location influence the decision to renovate or build?

When it comes to location, the advantage is again on the renovation side. One of the biggest challenges in building a new home is finding a plot. If you are interested in building in a rural area this is not a problem, but if you want to build in the city then things are different. The available plots are either far from attractive locations or too expensive or both. Old houses are, again, logically, in locations that are more desirable, so for those who are exclusive in this regard, renovation is often the only option.

Is it easier to get the necessary permits for renovation or construction?

For building a new house the situation is clear. For renovations that do not affect the external dimensions and appearance of the house, permits are not even required. There are also renovations for which it is a real pain to get permits. This applies to houses with a recognized historical heritage and for which it is necessary to obtain special permits because there are many restrictions (materials used, dimensions, appearance, purpose…).

How does the warranty affect the decision to renovate or build?

If you want a money back guarantee, then building a new house is the option you should choose. When renovating, it is difficult to get a guarantee even for individual works because subcontractors always transfer the responsibility to each other.

What is cheaper to maintain a renovated or newly built facility?

Newly built! Fixed maintenance costs mostly depend on the size of the house and the age of the building is not important but the quality of construction. This includes the costs of heating, cooling, cleaning, etc. There are also those costs related to repairs and replacement of worn-out things, and it is clear that newer homes are cheaper.

Housing experience?

It is one thing when you see a design solution on paper and quite another when you enter a space. When you spend a few years in a house, you not only feel that space, but you also understand much better the way you use it and you can set design priorities much more clearly. Sometimes what is good for most people is not the best for you. That is why often the best and most awarded architectural creations are those related to the renovation of houses for long-term residents.

What is the probability of unplanned costs in renovation and what in construction?

It is clear to everyone that many unexpected problems can occur during renovation, and we have listed most often above, because no matter how detailed and high-quality inspection before the start of work is, the exact condition can be known only with the beginning of demolition.

What most do not take into account is that unexpected costs can also occur when building a new house. They are most often the result of delays in the execution of works or delivery of materials, but there are others – poor soil quality in deeper layers of excavation, for example.

However, they are much more likely to occur during renovations.

What if you are a fan of some historical style?

For people who are fans of some historical style of construction, renovation is certainly more desirable. Although the house can be designed in any desired style, many construction techniques and necessary materials are not available today, so authenticity can hardly be achieved. After all, it will be just a copy, expensive or cheap, better or worse, but still just a copy.

it is easier to calculate the duration, although it is longer
it is fast if there are no unforeseen works and problems
if you are buying a building that is to be renovated, the price of building a new house may be more favorable
the total price is lower if the building that is in possession is renovated
if it is built on a turnkey basis, there is no effort either
it is less strenuous, especially if eviction is not required during the works
the new is sometimes impersonal and cold
antiquity arouses emotions
expensive, far or both
it is usually in a good location
user experience
some people find it harder to imagine what is drawn
experience speaks better than theory
if we imitate we can go to kitsch
the style is already there, it just needs to be highlighted
great opportunities but expensive
there is almost no new pollution
potentially difficult
can go on both sides
new is always cheaper
constant need for repairs and replacements
almost by default
almost impossible
unplanned expenses
less likely
more likely
despite everything, it is easier to achieve the ultimate goal
many challenges and limitations require more compromise
this is an option for people who have a stable income, like modern styles, have planned commitments throughout the day, like security, do not like surprises, do not calculate ...
this is an option for people who occasionally earn more, like classic styles, have flexible working hours, like challenges, are not afraid of surprises, have an entrepreneurial spirit...

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