Renovations Versus New Construction

 By: Leeanne Kunnert
An old age question that contractors are often asked; should we move forward with renovations on an existing home or opt for new construction? There are factors on both sides of the discussion that need to be evaluated when deciding what is right for you and your family. When considering between renovations and new construction take a look at the following five things.

Evaluate the costs associated with renovating verse the expense involved in new construction. Are the renovations that are needed structural? Structural renovations are often expensive and time consuming. It will most often be more cost effective to start from scratch over renovating when a lot of structural changes are needed. A new construction single story home runs around two hundred thousand dollars and two story homes around two hundred fifty thousand dollars.

Renovations, especially those involving the structure of the home can add up due to unforeseen problems that arise along the way. This doesn't give you complete control over the budget whereas with a new home you can get a fixed price contract.

Consider the age of your existing home. You may have purchased this specific home because of the houses character, the charm of the existing neighborhood and other aspects that are irreplaceable. If you fell in love with the old wooden floors and the existing ornamental ceilings then remodeling is obviously the only way to go. Period features in older homes cannot be replicated in new construction.

Where is the home located? Is the property one of the reasons that you initially purchased the home? Are there landscape options mature and unable to be replicated in another location? Vacant land to build on is often scarce.

Look at the homes existing floor plan; does it match your family's lifestyle? If the homes floor plan is unworkable then it makes more sense to start from scratch over. It may be cheaper to begin with a clean slate over completely renovating the homes existing floor plan into something that can work for your family and lifestyle.

Renovations are often more difficult to budget for. New home construction allow for a few years of lower expenses because everything is new. It is easier to maintain a new home and more energy efficient appliance, windows and more have been used to create your home. Also, new construction comes along with a warranty. Renovations are an expense that is comes along with the homes current maintenance expenses. So while you may budget your finances to achieve a new addition to the existing home it doesn't mean that the water heater on the home or the roof won't suddenly need to be replaced.
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