How Much Does It Cost To Renovate A House?

A low-end, basic whole house remodel costs $16,000-48,000, depending on the size of the house. This usually involves cosmetic updates and minor repairs, inexpensive lighting and floor replacement, as well as light landscaping.

A mid-range home renovation costs anywhere from $48,000 – 75,000. This type of remodel can include a full bathroom and kitchen remodel, some exterior updates, such as new siding, together with using higher-end building and finishing materials.

A high-end remodel costs as much as $85,000-200,000+. These upscale projects involve lay – out changes, all new expensive kitchen cabinetry and appliances, updated plumbing, electric and HVAC systems, as well as new roof, siding, etc.

Currently, most remodeling costs are up about 5-10%, compared to last year. This is due to the increased material costs, as well as shortage of qualified labor. Roof replacement costs have been pretty stable over the past 10 years, increasing very slightly at a rate of about 1% per year.

Also, keep in mind that remodeling prices may vary by as much as 20-30% or more. This will depend on such factors as:

– the contractor you hire and local labor rates – type of finishing materials used (budget vs. mid-range vs high-end; custom vs. stock) – existing house conditions – unexpected problems discovered during the course of the remodel, such rot, mold or water damage – your geographic location – accessibility issues – type of property (rental, condo, private home, historic building)

The most expensive and labor intensive remodels are the kitchen, bathroom, finishing the basement or the attic. Full remodels of these rooms typically involve both plumbing and electric work, which drives up the total cost.

You can use our Remodeling Costs Calculator to quickly and accurately estimate how much you will spend on renovations in your home.

Return On Investment For Top Renovations

When embarking on any major remodeling project in your house its important to think about the prospective return on investment.

Some remodels are done right before the sale of the house in order to boost its value, while others are done for personal enjoyment with the goal of adding long terms value to the home.

Here are the National Average ROI figures for the most popular remodeling projects.

Project Type Remodel Cost Average ROI Your Return
Minor kitchen remodel $21,198 81.10% $17,191
Mid-range full kitchen remodel $63,829 59% $37,637
High-end full kitchen remodel $125,721 53.50% $67,212
Mid-range full bathroom remodel $19,134 70.10% $13,422
High-end full bathroom remodel $61,662 56.20% $34,644
Interior Painting $3,185 107.00% $3,408
Floor replacement (hardwood) $18,500 75.00% $13,875
Finishing the attic (with bathroom) $47,240 62.00% $29,289
Finishing the basement (with bathroom) $56,850 73.00% $41,501
Window Replacement (wood) $19,391 69.50% $27,901
Window Replacement (vinyl) $15,995 74.30% $11,884

Keep in mind that the actual return on investment on any remodel will largely depend on local real estate market trends as well as the level of renovation you are doing.

If you are not sure whether a specific remodel is a smart investment, its best to contact a local experienced real estate agent for advice.

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Flooring cost

On average, the cost to install flooring nationally is $2,886, putting new floor installation squarely within the $5,000 remodel range many homeowners are planning for. Of course, factors such as home size, type of flooring, and installation quality can raise or lower that price. Having old flooring removed—and addressing any issues that removal may reveal—can also add to the price tag.

The hardwood flooring cost is the highest, followed by laminate, stone, and tile flooring costs. Most flooring materials are paid for in square feet, so larger homes will require a larger investment. Picking the right flooring material and limiting new floors to high-traffic spaces, such as the kitchen or hallways, can also help minimize costs.

How Much Does It Cost To Add A Room?

The estimated cost of adding a room ranges between $135,000 – $282,000. About 33 percent of people report renovating their primary bedroom to increase livability and overall function6. Once complete, over half of homeowners enjoy being home more and feel a major sense of accomplishment.

High-end average cost: $320,976

Additional home value: $152,996

Return on investment: 48%

Mid-range average cost: $156,741

Additional home value: $85,672

Return on investment: 59%

Exterior Remodel Cost

Exterior remodels can focus on the structural integrity or curb appeal of your home. For roof, siding and window replacements, you’ll spend an average of nearly $68,000. To add a patio or deck area, expect to pay another $17,000.

Roofing replacement average cost: $37,144

Additional home value: $21,482

Return on investment: 56%

Siding replacement average cost: $18,101

Additional home value: $12,467

Return on investment: 69%

Window replacement average cost: $21,302

Additional home value: $14,471

Return on investment: 68%

Deck addition average cost: $19,596

Additional home value: $12,604

Return on investment: 65%

Average cost to gut & remodel a house

The average cost to gut and remodel a house is $100,000 to $200,000, depending on the square footage and age. Gut renovation costs $60 to $150 per square foot and includes demolition, structural improvements, new electrical and plumbing, new roof and HVAC, appliances, and finishings.

Cost of gutting a house and remodeling
Renovation Average cost
Gut a house to the studs $2,500 – $7,000
Complete gut and remodel $100,000 – $200,000

Cost to gut a house

The average cost to gut a house to the studs is $2,500 to $7,000 or more, which includes permits, labor, and material disposal. If the home has asbestos inside, it costs $1,200 to $2,800 extra for safe gutting and removal.

Cost to rehab a house

The average cost to rehab a house is $20,000 to $75,000 or $20 to $50 per square foot. A full gut rehab costs $100,000 to $200,000 to remodel a house completely. Generally, the cost per square feet gets cheaper as the house size increases.

Rehabbing is a term used interchangeably with remodeling and renovating. The extent of the remodel, location, and choice of materials affect the total cost.

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Ways to Save Money on Home Renovation

While you can’t control the supply chain, you can find ways to save money on your home renovation. Karp recommends working with people who will share costs with you upfront. 

“I think the number one thing is to have the right team, a team that you trust,” she says. “As much as possible, homeowners should try to get an idea of the cost of the project, meaning architectural fees, compliance fees, and build costs at the schematic design, development, and construction stage.”

Allow space in your timeline for unexpected delays, Weiss says.  

“Make a sort of renovation calendar that has enough space for any sort of interruptions,” she says. “Even [prepare for] things like your contractors have to be out because they may have been exposed to COVID. There’s nothing worse than expecting a renovation to be done months and months before it’s actually done, so make sure you can dedicate ample time to the project to account for the hiccups you may face.”

Finally, Lavinder reminds homeowners to solidify their renovation plans before they get started. 

“People may have a plan for the remodel, but then they change their mind in the middle,” he says. “That has a ripple effect that affects all these different costs. Going into a project and sticking with it and not changing your mind is one of the most important parts of doing a successful remodel.”

Office After

 Money Spent Since 2013: Both rooms just got the p

  • Money Spent Since 2013: Both rooms just got the paint treatment. It cost me $250 to give the sun porch a makeover, and about $100 and give-or-take two years of my life to finally get all of the office trim painted. Ha. The furniture in here are all hand-me-downs.

4. Develop Detailed Plan

Like planning a budget, set a detailed plan for a remodeling project. Define the scope of your project and stay within those parameters. It’s easy to let your imagination run wild, but if you stick to the plan, you’ll have a project that comes in at cost and one you’ll love.

Tips for Saving on Home Renovation Costs

When creating your remodeling budget, use these tips to further reduce your costs:

  • Complete demolition yourself: If you’re removing cabinets or pulling up tile as part of your renovation, consider doing the work yourself. As long as there is no expertise required, this is a good way to reduce labor costs and save a few dollars.
  • Order fixtures and finishes yourself: Your contractor will probably charge you an hourly fee to do your shopping for you and may even charge a markup. Be clear about your plans so your contractor knows you’re taking on that responsibility yourself.
  • Be your own project manager: If you need to hire additional subcontractors for your project, interview and select them yourself instead of having your general contractor do it.
  • Do your own painting: Having a room painted by a professional can cost $300 or more. Plan to complete any required painting yourself and you can remove that cost from your remodeling budget.
  • Shop used: Instead of purchasing everything brand-new, pick up used or refurbished items when possible. This can greatly reduce your spend on appliances and finishes.

What is the best way to pay for a home remodel?

Wondering how much does an exterior home remodel cost? And how should you pay for it?

Given that home renovations are such an expensive endeavor, many people who do home improvements choose to pay for them on credit or by taking out loans. Below are the most common ways to pay house renovation costs.

12. Amazon Warehouse

Amazon Warehouse features used or open-box products that you can get some great deals on. It’s a little bit of buyer beware but Amazon Warehouse provides condition categories to help you select a product. It’s a good spot for kitchen appliances and furniture.

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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

“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.

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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.

Appliances

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.

Photo: istockphoto.com

19 Ways to Save on Your Home Remodel

If you’ve weighed your options, and have decided it’s better to remodel your home, here are our tips.

1. Increase Efficiency, Not Size

Anthony Tieuli

If you can reorganize and equip your kitchen for maximum utility, you may not need to blow out the walls to gain square footage. Start by replacing space-hogging shelves with cabinet-height pullout drawers 8 inches wide, containing racks for canned goods and other items.

“You’re getting three or more horizontal planes where you might otherwise get only one,” says Louis Smith Jr., an architect with Meier Group, in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

You could easily shell out a few thousand to outfit cabinets with upgrades like dividers, pull-out pot trays, and lazy Susans, but you’ll save many times that amount by skipping the addition you thought you needed.

  • Cost to expand kitchen by 200 square feet: $48,000 to $95,000
  • Cost of super-efficient, custom-designed cabinets: $35,000
  • Saved: Up to $60,000

2. Bring in Natural Light Without Adding Windows

Jared Kuzia

Before cutting a big hole in the side of your house and rearranging the framing, consider less invasive—and less expensive—ways of capturing light.

To brighten up a windowless bath or hallway, for instance, you can install a “light tube,” which slips between roof rafters and funnels sunshine down into the living space.

  • Cost to add a double-pane insulated window: $1,500
  • Cost for a light tube: $500
  • Saved: $1,000

3. Hit the Recycling Center

Courtesy Habitat for Humanity

Do-it-yourselfers can reap big savings with recycled or lightly used fixtures and building materials. Habitat for Humanity operates about 400 ReStores nationwide, which offer salvaged materials at half off home-center prices.

One caveat: Many contractors won’t work with salvaged items, or homeowner-supplied materials in general, because they don’t want to assume the liability if something goes wrong.

That said, if you’re doing your own work, you can find anything from prehung doors to acrylic skylights to partial bundles of insulation. (To find a ReStore near you, visit .)

  • Price of 4-by-5-foot insulated window in a home center: $600
  • Price at ReStore: $300
  • Saved: $300

4. Donate your Trash

Before you begin a remodeling job, invite the local Habitat for Humanity chapter to remove materials and fixtures for later resale. “About 85 percent of a house is reusable,” says B.J. Perkins, Habitat’s ReUse program manager, in Austin, Texas. “We can do a total takedown, or do a cherry-pick job and take the cabinets, the tub, the sink, and so on.”

You save space in the landfill, collect a charitable tax credit for the donation, and help a good cause. Visit Habitat to find an affiliate near you.

  • Cost to trash a suite of bathroom fixtures: $50 to $75
  • Cost to donate: Nothing, plus you get a tax deduction
  • Saved: Space in the landfill (and a little bit of your soul)

5. Do Your Own Demo

Knocking down your home down may not be as costly as rebuilding, you can still shave dollars by doing some of the demolition yourself—as long as you proceed with care.

“If a homeowner wants to demo a deck, well, I am sure they can handle that,” says Michael Winn, owner of Winn Design, in Virginia. “But when it comes to interior spaces, I would dissuade them from doing it unless they have done it before.”

The reason: A reckless wrecker might unwittingly take out a load-bearing wall or, worse still, plunge a reciprocating saw into live wiring or pressurized plumbing.

  • Cost to demo a 200-square-foot deck yourself: $450 (Dumpster rental and parking permit)
  • Cost for a pro: $1,000
  • Saved: $550

6. Consider Long-Term Costs, Not Just Short-Term Gains

If your addition calls for clapboard siding, for instance, you can save more in the long run by ponying up now for the preprimed and prepainted variety. It costs an extra 10 to 20 cents per foot, but “you’ll wind up paying for half as many paint jobs down the road,” says Paul Eldrenkamp, owner of Byggmeister, a design-build remodeling firm in Newton, Massachusetts.

The reason? Factory finishes are applied on dry wood under controlled conditions—no rain, no harsh sun. “I used prefinished claps on my house about ten years ago and the only flaw in the finish is the occasional mildew spot, easily washed off,” Eldrenkamp says. “The paint looks as if it’ll be good for another ten years, easily.”

  • Cost of unfinished siding for a 10-by-40-foot addition, plus two paint jobs: $5,000
  • Cost for pre-finished claps and one coat of paint at installation: $3,750
  • Saved: $1,250

7. Tap Your Contractor’s Sources

When it comes to things like flooring, ask your subcontractor if he has odds-and-ends stock left over from other jobs. While renovating a Civil War-era bed-and-breakfast in New Jersey some years back, contractor Bill Asdal needed wood flooring.

He made a few phone calls and came up with hundreds of square feet of hardwood, in various lengths and widths, that otherwise would have gone into the trash on other job sites. Just by planing it to uniform thickness, then sanding and refinishing it, he saved his client almost $9,000 in materials costs.

  • Cost of new flooring: $19,200
  • Cost to use someone else’s discards: $10,500
  • Saved: $8,700

8. Consult an Architect

David Yellen

Depending on the scale of your project, you might not need a full-on architectural commission, which involves extensive meetings, multiple job-site visits, and several sets of construction drawings, to the tune of about 8 percent of a project’s construction budget. You might be able to tap an architect’s design savvy by having him undertake a one-time design consultation.

For example, for a $400 flat fee, Baton Rouge architect Kevin Harris will meet with a homeowner, examine the problem, and sketch out a few solutions that could be as simple as opening up a partition wall or moving a door. The homeowner can then give the sketch to a builder or take it to a drafting service, which will charge about $1 to $1.50 a square foot to crank out formal construction drawings.

  • Architect’s fee to design a 300-square-foot home office: $2,250
  • Fee for design consultation only and plans: $580
  • Saved: $1,670

9. Partner With a Contractor

Though the practice is controversial among the trades, some contractors will offer consulting and mentoring services to skilled do-it-yourselfers on an hourly basis.

Chicago-area builder Ted Welch charges $150 per hour for such coaching, with a two-hour minimum commitment. “The most satisfied clients tend to be those who have good manual dexterity, who realize that skills need to be practiced in order to be perfected, and who are willing to risk making a few mistakes and then learn from them,” he says.

  • Cost to drywall one room: $1,000
  • Cost with DIY consultation: $300 (2 hours of coaching), plus materials
  • Saved: $700

10. Make Sweat Equity Count

Unless you’ve got loads of time (and expertise) to spend on your project, the best way to add sweat equity is up front, by handling your own demolition, or at the back end, by doing some of the finish work yourself.

“If you want to save money, dig in and start helping out,” says Tom Silva. “You can insulate, you can paint, you can sand.” Or better still, he says, help with cleanup every day. “Instead of paying someone to pick up sawdust off the floor, put your money into the time it takes to trim the window properly,” he advises.

  • Cost for construction crew to handle cleanup: $200 per day
  • Cost to do it yourself: $0
  • Saved: About 3 to 5 percent of the overall job cost

11. Do Your Own Schlepping

If you’re doing your own project, slash your materials-delivery fees by picking up goods yourself. No pickup truck? For about $400, you can purchase a nearly new single-axle utility trailer online, which you can tow behind your SUV. Get one just big enough to carry 4-by-8 sheet goods flat. Use it for a half-dozen trips, and it’s paid for itself. Find trailers for sale near you via eBay Motors, or try your local classifieds.

  • Cost of 10 deliveries: $750
  • Cost to buy a used trailer: $400
  • Saved: $350, plus you get to keep (or sell) the trailer

12. Don’t Overspend on Wall Prep

If your walls are in such rough shape that it would take a painting contractor days of filling and sanding to make them ready for the roller, consider using materials such as Texturglas, from Deerfield Beach, Florida—based company Roos International.

A breathable, nontoxic wall covering made of fine glass filaments, Texturglas has a similar look and feel to the fiberglass matting used in auto-body work. It’s available in a variety of surface patterns, takes paint readily, and is designed to be installed right on top of existing surfaces, adding strength while covering up dings.

  • Cost to patch and paint a 15-by-20-foot room with heavily damaged walls: $1,525
  • Cost to install Texturglas: $1,050
  • Saved: $475

13. Consider Look-Alikes

Some imitations just make sense: Lumber giant Weyerhaeuser sells a fast-growing natural eucalyptus hybrid under the brand name Lyptus. Sustainably harvested in plantations in Brazil, the clear-grained hardwood looks and feels remarkably like mahogany. It’s sold as toungue-and-groove flooring and in planks and sheets for cabinetry and millwork.

  • Cost of 100 board feet of mohogany: $808
  • Cost of same quantity Lyptus: $395
  • Saved: $413

14. Wait Until Contractors Want Your Business

Don’t schedule your reno in the height of summer or between September, when the kids go back to school, and Christmas. “That’s premium time,” explains Lisa Stacholy, owner of LKS Architects, in Atlanta, Georgia. Suppliers tend to be busier, labor scarcer, and deliveries slower. One Virginia-based contractor offers discounts of between 4.5 and 5.5 percent (depending on the overall budget) on projects during his down time, right after the new year.

  • Cost of a major bathroom remodel in peak season: $25,000
  • Cost in January: $23,625
  • Saved: $1,375

15. Skip the Foundation

If local code allows, you may be able to support a small addition on posts and beams, as you would a deck, explains contractor Dennis Gavin, of Gavin Design-Build, in Media, Pennsylvania.

  • 220-square-foot addition with poured foundation: $40,000
  • Same-size addition on posts and beams: $35,000
  • Saved: $5,000

16. Don’t Move the Kitchen Sink

John Gruen

Or the toilet, if you can avoid it. “That often becomes the biggest part of the plumbing-price increase,” says Richard Trethewey, This Old House plumbing and heating expert. If your new layout requires that you move the toilet, use the opportunity to upgrade the pipes at the same time. “That will save you money in the long run,” says Richard.

  • Cost to move toilet more than 3 feet: $500-$1,000
  • Cost to leave in existing location: $0
  • Saved: Up to $1,000

17. Plan with Stock Sizes in Mind

“Ask yourself, ‘Why am I building something 10 feet wide if plywood comes in 4-foot-wide sheets?'” says Lisa Stacholy, of LKS Architects, in Atlanta. The same applies to stock windows and doors: Use manufacturers’ off-the-shelf dimensions from the outset and you will save the premiums of custom fabrication.

  • Cost of custom doors: $1,500-$2,500
  • Cost of standard doors: $500-$800
  • Saved: Up to $2,000

18. Buy Building Supplies at Auction

Brian Peppel, a homeowner in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, attends one building-supply auction each month in nearby Lancaster County. His recent finds include two pallets of concrete block for $10 and a solid-wood prehung exterior door for $65.

“Their inventory is everything under the sun, a lot of scratch-and-dent, misordered custom items, or new overstock supplies,” reports Peppel. He once watched the auctioneer’s gavel fall on a large, custom-made triangular window with an original retail value that he pegs at several thousand dollars. The winning bid? $1.

  • Cost of solid-cherry wall cabinet at a home center: $300
  • Cost at building-supply auction: $10
  • Saved: $290

19. Make Decisions Early

Start prowling the aisles at the hardware store or home center way before the wrecking crew shows up. Get a good feeling for what you want in fixtures and appliances and what they cost.

If you aren’t absolutely specific up front about what you want, you’ll have to rely on your contractor’s estimate, called an allowance, and his notion of what is acceptable may be quite different from yours. “Ninety-eight percent of the time, allowances are too low,” says Tom Silva. For instance, you may have had a glass-tile backsplash in mind, but your contractor’s bid was for ceramic.

  • Cost to plan ahead: $0
  • Cost of change orders midstream: The difference in the item price, but also time lost to project delays and communications glitches
  • Saved: Up to thousands

Total house makeover: A real-life example

Holmes shared a recent proposal for a complete remodel of a 3,750 square foot home where his firm did most of the labor, but the buyer saved some costs sourcing appliances and hardware:

Full Gut Remodel Labor Materials (Estimate) Cost
Demolition/Disposal $1,500 $1,000 $2,500
Structural Repair $8,000 $6,725 $14,725
Plumbing $25,000 $1,500 $26,500
Installing HVAC $8,000 $3,500 $11,500
Electrical $12,000 $2,400 $14,400
Drywall & Primer Accounted for in materials $1.50 per sq ft. $25,143.50
Interior Doors $50 $125 per door $1,750
Flooring $2 per sq ft. $3 per sq ft. $18,625
Kitchen Cabinets $1,750 $4,800 $6,550
Kitchen Counters $45 per sq ft. (labor included) $3,037.50
Kitchen Backsplash $15 per sq ft. $5 per sq ft. $560
Bath tile $5 per sq ft. $4 per sq ft. $5,400
Vanities $100 $500 (per vanity) $3,000
Total $133,691

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