Selling houses can be an expensive proposition. There are agent’s fees, marketing, legals and then a host of other costs when you go to buy again. Renovating can be a cheaper way to reinvigorate the home, but there are a lot of factors and costs which need to be considered first.
Andrew Clements, Director of design and building company Mirage Projects said it pays to get professional advice before undergoing any type of renovation.
He said for larger, structural changes on the home it was wise to use a building designer to sketch the proposed changes first, as they have lower fee structures, and always get a builder to quote on the renovation before lodging plans with Council.
“The builder can only price what they see in plain sight,” Mr Clements said. “Have a contingency plan in place for hidden costs such as termite damage, water damage, asbestos and other nasty surprises,” he said.
Mr Clements said in NSW, Homeowners Warranty insurance, which is required to be provided by a builder or tradesperson by law to protect the consumer in the case of a builder not being able to finish the work through death, disappearance or insolvency, is also an additional cost to factor in.
“Lodging development applications (DA) with local Council can also cost up to $3000,” he said.
“Construction Certificates are either issued by the Council or a Private Certifier.”
“I prefer use a private certifier as I have a good working relationship with them and they operate over a wide range of Council areas.”
As a rule of thumb, Mr Clements said renovations normally cost around $2500 per square metre, but that depends on the quality of the finishes etc.
Andrew’s 5 Tips for Home Renovations
- Use a building designer to design your home in sketch form.
- Find an open and honest builder to price your renovation before you lodge to Council.
- Allow a contingency plan in your budget for unforeseen items
- Use an independent building inspector to do inspections during construction (a good builder will work with the inspector.)
- Select of all your Prime Cost (ie taps, sinks, vanities etc) items well in advance and advise your builder of changes.