Home Renovation Tips

How much does it cost to renovate a home?

Renovations can be complex and often require many specialists, including an architect and a master builder. What really helps to save time and hassle is having one point of contact, so consider finding a specialist design and build project management company in the early planning and budgeting stages.

One of our Refresh Renovations consultants says: “When the brief is ‘we’d like to renovate, how much will it cost and what can we do?’, it’s possible to provide a broad indication of budget and advise on-site coverage, height to boundary issues, design and council requirements and the myriad of areas that will need consideration.”

Remember that an early estimate is just a rough guideline based on a series of assumptions. Even when you get the actual building specification along with a proper quote, plan in a contingency budget of at least 15 per cent for unforeseen problems or extras. Other factors to consider are the timeline and whether you have to move out during the renovation. Major work typically requires a building consent from the council.

The renovation process can seem overwhelming to a customer. But a good builder with a solid team can provide the framework and expertise to make it a logical and rewarding experience. At Hitch Property Constructions, we offer a wide range of home renovations.

Renovations: where to start?

Once you have established your overall budget, it is crucial to prepare a detailed plan for your renovation. Take the time to get this step right, as this can make or break your project.


Look for tips and inspiration

Whether you are embarking on a Queenslander renovation or simply sprucing up a rental, a good starting point is to browse through renovation websites and blogs to gather tips and ideas.

If you are an apartment owner, you can read our article on apartment renovations. It will provide you with an excellent overview of what is involved with an apartment renovation, including the impact of Strata-By-Laws.

You can also use Pinterest to bookmark design ideas or even do a visual board by collecting photos out of magazines.

Source contractors

Source quotes from a few different contractors and compare them to make sure you’re getting a fair deal. It is a good idea to ask people you know for recommendations or have a look online for reviews.

Find materials and fittings

Take your time to shop around for things like bathroom fittings, cabinetry, flooring and decorations. Would you need something custom made? Make sure to order this well in advance. Keep an eye out for sales, get as many quotes as you can, and compare what’s on offer before committing to a purchase. Check out our range of Melbourne home renovations for your dream house.

Allow plenty of time

Remember that most renovation projects end up taking a lot longer than anticipated. Allow time for unexpected delays and try not to stress when things don’t go 100% according to plan. You will need to be a bit flexible to enjoy the ride.

How much does a full home renovation cost?

There are a lot of factors that contribute to your renovation’s overall cost (more on that later). According to Service Seeking, minor renovations can cost as little as $20,000, but you can easily go over $300,000 for a complete transformation. Most of these costs go to labour, while the next biggest expense is sourcing materials.

Factors that affect the price of your home renovation

The range for renovation costs is huge, but that’s because no two renovations are ever exactly the same. Here are the considerations that influence your house renovation costs.


Perhaps one of the biggest contributing components is size. Remodelling a studio apartment will be significantly cheaper than renovating a 5-bed, 4-bath townhouse. According to Renovation Junkies, renovation costs per square metre average about $2000-$4000.


Premium materials come at a premium cost, but you do have to factor in maintenance and durability as well.

A cheaper material at the offset, like weatherboard, could prove to be more expensive in the long run, especially when compared to low-maintenance options like a brick.

Renovation Level

Some renovations involve only minor alterations, such as refurbishing fixtures or changing the fittings. But if you’re planning to completely change the layout of your home (including the locations of electrical outlets or plumbing), expect to pay more as well.


Your post code can determine just how cheap or expensive your renovation will be. One of the highest costs is labour and hourly wages which vary from state to state. Canstar states that per-hour rates for renovators could run as low as $50 in the Queensland area and as high as $85 in New South Wales.


Even in the same town, two contractors could quote you wildly different rates for the same job. While it can be tempting to accept the lowest offer immediately, consider that paying slightly higher for experience and reputation could be worth it.


A kitchen renovation can cost anywhere from $10,000 to $45,000, depending on the work you want to be done, the materials you use and the size of your kitchen.

Labour will likely be your biggest expense when renovating a kitchen because you’ll need to hire licensed tradespeople like electricians, builders, plumbers, tilers and cabinet makers. Coordinating multiple tradespeople requires a bit of know-how, though, so if you’re undertaking a major kitchen renovation, it’s usually more efficient to hire a contractor who will manage the project for you.

Hitch Property Constructions has the best range of renovations services to help you create your dream house.

Kitchen renovations can be divided into three categories:

Budget renovations

Budget kitchen renovations involve simpler alterations like replacing light fixtures and appliances, installing new cupboards or adding a tile splashback. Research shows that this sort of renovation project generally costs between $10,000 and $23,000.

Standard renovations

Standard kitchen renovations may involve structural changes such as putting in new flooring, replacing windows and moving light fixtures, but won’t alter the layout very much. These renovations can cost between $20,000 and $45,000, depending on the size and condition of your kitchen, as well as the materials you choose to use.

Premium renovations

A premium kitchen renovation would include everything from installing floor heating to changing the entire layout by knocking out or relocating walls. Premium renovations can cost between $40,000 and $70,000, depending on how much work is needed and the materials used.

Of course, regardless of what your budget is, some renovations will simply give you more bang for your buck. Kitchen renovations that pay off the most include adding storage space and opening up the kitchen by removing walls.

Kitchen renovations can take as little as two weeks or as long as nine weeks, depending on the scale of the job. For example, resurfacing your cabinetry and painting the walls would likely be a fairly quick job, whereas knocking out walls to create an open plan kitchen would take a lot longer.


Bathrooms are also labour-intensive. The biggest cost usually goes to tiling or new bathroom fixtures. According to the pricing on the tiling store Discount, tiles can run for as little as $15 per square metre or as high as $200 per square metre.

Bathroom renovations can cost anywhere from $10,000 to $35,000, depending on the size of your bathroom and the materials you intend to use. Simple renovations using budget materials and fittings can usually be kept under $15,000, whereas high-end renovations will cost more than $25,000.

Adding storage space or upgrading vanities will give you the best bang for your buck, and the tiles will be your biggest expense. If you’re keeping it simple with standard white ceramic wall tiles, you’ll likely pay between $20 and $28 per square metre, but more luxurious wall tiles can easily cost between $68 and $159 per square metre.

As with kitchen renovations, managing a bathroom renovation project on your own can get tricky if you’re dealing with electricians, plumbers, tilers and other tradies, so you may want to hire a contractor to organise and oversee the work for you.

How long will a bathroom renovation take?

Bathroom renovations usually take between one to three weeks, although this depends on a few factors. Any structural works or jobs that require electrical elements or plumbing to be moved will take longer, and if you have a large bathroom, laying the tiles will take longer too.

How can I save money on my bathroom renovation?

You can save money on your bathroom renovation by tackling the painting and decorating on your own, but be sure to do some research beforehand. For example, areas that aren’t covered by tiles will need to be painted with moisture and wear-resistant paint, and certain types of window treatments may not work well in certain bathrooms.


Bedroom renovations can be very cheap or very expensive, depending on how minimalist or grand you want it to be. Having an ensuite will definitely raise the price significantly.

How much does a master bedroom renovation cost?

Although the master bedroom is a very personal space, renovating it can still add real value to your home. The cost of renovating a master bedroom can be as low as $2000 or as high as $35,000; it all depends on what you want to add or change.

If you’re just looking to make simple changes like putting in a new carpet and adding some storage space, you’ll probably be somewhere in the $2000 range, whereas adding a walk-in closet might be closer to $4000, and an ensuite bathroom could bring you up to $35,000 or more.

How long will a master bedroom renovation take?

Renovating the master bedroom generally won’t take more than a week, but the time required will vary depending on the scope of the work. Replacing carpet or changing light fixtures can be done in one day, for example, but if you’re adding an ensuite bathroom, you should count on a week or more.

How can I save money on my master bedroom renovation?

If you’re renovating your master bedroom on a budget, tackling the painting and decorating work yourself can help you save a lot of money. Check out home improvement blogs and magazines for inspiration and then do some research on how to prepare your walls for decorating properly.

Living Room

Living rooms are one of the more public/visible spaces in your home, so renovations here will certainly impress.

How much does a living room renovation cost?

The living room is where you entertain guests and relax at the end of a long day, so renovating this space is a great way to increase your home’s aesthetic appeal.

Living room renovations can cost between $10,000 and $15,000, depending on the size of your living room. Simple jobs like paint won’t cost too much, of course, but if you want to replace the flooring, put in a new lounge, add light fixtures or move electrical elements you can expect to spend $15,000 or more.

While you may need to hire a tiler, electrician or painter for some of the work, the decoration of your living room will give you the most value for your money, while the lounge will cost you the most.

How long will a living room renovation take?

Depending on how much you want to change the room, renovating your living room should take no more than a week, but if you’re doing your own painting, it could end up taking slightly longer.

How can I save money on my living room renovation?

You can save money on your living room renovation by doing the painting and decorating yourself. If you’re laying carpet or installing floorboards, you may even be able to do this yourself too, but keep in mind that it will take you longer than it would a professional.

Garden and Deck

Garden and deck renovations can greatly enhance your outdoor space, and research shows that good landscaping can add 11% to a property’s perceived value. Depending on how elaborate your plan is, building a deck and doing up the garden can cost between $2,000 and $10,000.

You’ll need to hire a carpenter, a landscaper and maybe even an electrician if you’re planning to add outdoor lighting. Still, your biggest expense will likely be the timber used for the deck and frame, which can cost between $200 and $320 per square metre, depending on the type of wood.

Other affordable ways to enhance the aesthetic appeal and add value to your property include adding an outdoor BBQ or kitchen area and lighting features. According to NAHB’s survey on what home buyers want, outdoor lighting is essential to 41% of buyers and desirable to 49% of buyers.

How long will garden and deck renovations take?

Garden and deck renovations usually take between one and two weeks, but the exact timeframe depends on what your plan entails.

A larger renovation project that involves building a deck, laying walkways and adding outdoor lighting features could take two weeks or more. In contrast, smaller ones that focus on upgrading an existing deck or adding garden plants and mulching would likely be completed within a few days.

How can I save money on my garden and deck renovations?

While the building of the deck itself should be left to a professional deck builder, you can save money by tackling weeding, planting and mulching yourself and adding your own potted plants, furniture and other accessories once the deck is complete.

You can also see whether less expensive decking materials would work for you. The most popular decking materials in Australia include Blackbutt, Spotted Gum and Ironbark, but depending on where you live, less expensive timbers like treated pine or Merbau may also be an option.

Laundry renovation costs

A lot of people forget about the laundry when planning a renovation project, but you should consider sprucing up this room as it gets used (almost) every day.

Providing that you don’t need new plumbing or electricals, most laundry renovations can be done for under $5,000

Much of the laundry renovation work can be done by homeowners, including painting and installing shelving.

However, if you need to install a new sink or need to bring electricity to the area for your washer and dryer, you can expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $75 per hour for labour.

How are Aussie’s managing renovations and DIY during COVID-19?

While spending is down overall, data shows that Australians are spending more on DIY projects and home improvements as we adapt to isolation and social distancing measures.

Australians have been spending on home renovations and trades services as data from May 2020 shows. Data from 1.8 million Australians in Zip’s Weekly Spending Index for May shows that home renovation and trades services saw a boom when compared to the same period last year.

Security installation, roofing, gardening, outdoor home improvement, home pool and spas all saw significant increases in consumer spending in May 2020, while trade services like electricians, plumbers and painters were all sought after.

The CommBank Card Spending Data for the period of May 2020 also showed that spending on household furnishings and equipment remains the strongest category – up more than 50% from the same period a year ago.

Many sectors in CommBank’s household spending intentions report was either flat or in decline, with retail spending the only sector increasing. During the month of June 2020, the data is consistent, depicting an increase in retail spending still continuing to July 2020.

Australians have been happy to spend on household furnishings and equipment, which ranges from the furniture but also just about anything for the home, from TVs to paints and plants. This is good news for the likes of Bunnings, Harvey Norman and JB Hi-Fi which have seen an increase in sales.

As a general guideline, you should not spend more than 5% of the purchase price on renovations, and a well-executed renovation can add up to 10% to the value of your home (especially if you are planning to hold onto the property for five or more years).

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