Rebuild or Renovate: 5 Things to Consider
May 25, 2022
If you love the location of your home but not the home itself, you’re one of many homeowners who’ll have to decide between rebuilding or renovating. This is not an easy decision to make, and it goes without saying that many different variables will come into play before you make your final decision.
While knocking down your home and starting scratch can be an intimidating idea, more often than not it’s the most suitable option. On the other hand, the charm and character of older homes can be hard to replicate, and you can risk losing something that’s truly one of a kind.
To help you make your final decision, we’ve collated this list of 5 things to consider when choosing between rebuilding and renovating.
One of the most obvious considerations in your decision will be the cost – that is whether rebuilding or renovating will be cheaper. This will depend on a variety of factors, including how many changes you would be making in your potential renovation and how extensive these changes will be to the structure of your home.
Although the average cost of building a new home has risen post-COVID, it’s often still cheaper than renovating. This is mostly due to the fact that renovation is a bespoke process that’s unique to the home, making it lengthy and labor intensive. On the other hand, a luxury home builder can help you create a new home using systems already in place and modern materials to be as efficient and timely as possible.
- Age of the home
As we touched on earlier, older homes tend to have a certain je ne sais quoi that can be difficult to recreate. Whether it’s decorative ceilings, beautiful timber floors or patterned stained windows, there are some elements of existing homes, especially period ones, that can be hard to say goodbye to. Generally, the best homes to knock down are the ones that are bought purely for the land and location, rather than the quality of the home itself.
If you already have a gem of a home that just needs some modernizing and extending, then renovating might be worth the potential extra cost. Preserving your home will also help you stand out from the pack in a sea of minimalistic, modern homes, creating a more competitive market for it when the time comes to sell.
- Market conditions
Some other factors to consider are the current market conditions, specifically in the area where your current home exists. If you’re in high demand inner-city locations where land is hard to come by, rebuilding is your best option and there’s little risk of overcapitalizing.
If you’re unsure where you stand in your current location, sit down with a local real estate agent to get some insight into where you stand. If you’re in a suburb with low demand and an excess of homes on the market, a smaller, less expensive renovation might be the best route to go down.
- The block
The block you’re sitting on can have a huge impact on your final decision, as some blocks are much cheaper and easier to knock down and rebuild on than others. This will depend on a variety of factors, such as its size, slope, vegetation and more.
Another thing to consider is the laws of your local council, which may very well prevent you from creating your dream home either through renovation or a complete rebuild. Areas such as building structure and height lie in the hands of your council, so make sure you get in touch with them before you’re too deep in the design phase.
- Home orientation
Ideally, you want your home to have a north or north-east facing living area for optimal energy efficiency and comfort. This is because this will get you the most direct sunlight as the day progresses, especially in the wintertime when there’s a lack of sun and you’ll want to keep your house as warm as possible.
If your existing home has the wrong orientation and you’d have to make huge structural changes to get that ever-important northern light, you’ll probably be better off knocking down and rebuilding.
Although there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer, hopefully, these considerations will help you gain some clarity and make a well-informed decision that’s suited to the needs of both you and your family.