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To renovate or to knock down and rebuild?

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To renovate or knock down can be a difficult decision to make. You might love the area; you’re close to family and friends, and the market is heating up; so moving is out of the question. You might be left with two concrete options – to either renovate or to knock down and rebuild. Before making a split decision, there are a few factors you might want to contemplate before making a decision.


The condition of your house may help with determining whether or not you will need to either renovate or knock down. Your personal preferences can play a big role in this decision. Will you be comfortable living in the same home with a few touch ups such as painting walls and new flooring? Or, would you prefer to make some structural changes to your home for more space or division of rooms? The answer to these questions might be determined by your personal preference. If you prefer to make structural changes, consider having a reputable builder or architect look over your home to inspect the condition of your home to see if it could cope with structural changes. They may also be able to help you with cost estimates.

Depending on what you would like to do with a renovation the costs can vary significantly. If you’re considering making significant structural changes it might be cheaper to start from scratch by knocking down and rebuilding. Generally, building a new home can cost as little as $200,0001. Of course, this cost can vary depending on a number of factors such as land type (sloping or flat), access to amenities such as electricity and water, or the availability of reputable builders.
  Ongoing expenses
In most cases, newer homes can be cheaper to maintain and have a lower risk of termite infestation. If you are considering building a new home, the materials and hardware used to build your home can influence these two factors. Contemplate speaking to a builder about how to reduce ongoing maintenance costs and susceptibility to termites. This could save you some extra cash in the longer term. If you would prefer to renovate, consider checking the structural integrity of your home and look for any signs of termite infestation. This could help with your decision to either renovate or rebuild; and if you find any issues, it might be the case that rebuilding is the cheaper option.
  Compliance and regulation
This topic might be boring but could save you from being disappointed. If your home is older, there might be a chance that it is heritage listed. If this is the case, there are a range of implications that this could have on the decision to renovate or knock down. Depending on the condition of a heritage listed home, often you will find that knocking it down isn’t an option. If you’re in New South Wales, you can find more details on heritage listed homes via the Office of Environment and Heritage.
  The hassel of renovating
Depending on what you would like to do in a renovation, it could be quite a large task; shifting furniture, isolating rooms, or even moving out of your home during the entire process. Are you prepared to undertake all these tasks yourself? Or, pay a professional?
  Return on investment (ROI)
Whether to renovate or rebuild is a tough question and one influencing factor is the ROI. If you’re considering renovating, will the total renovation costs exceed the total value increase in your home? By spending money and over capitalising, it might be quite difficult to recoup any of these costs if the value of your home doesn’t increase as expected. Also consider, that a new home can cost as little as $200,000 depending on how you intend to renovate, rebuilding might be the better option.

In summary

there are consistent themes throughout all of these factors that may ultimately influence your decision. These can include; the extent of your renovation, the comparable costs between renovating and rebuilding, and the expected increase in the value of your property. Some may say it can be a hard decision to make and could involve a fair amount of stress; but the potential to increase the value of your home, while living in an area you love might be worth it in the long-term.

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