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05.1 - new house vs renovated house

Building a New House vs. Renovating an Old One: A Contractor’s Perspective

As your family expands, you may find yourself contemplating the best housing options. While purchasing an existing home is a common choice, there are other factors to consider. Home addition renovations offer the opportunity to expand your living space, improve functionality, and, depending on the extent of the project, can be cost-effective. On the other hand, building a new house from scratch provides the exciting prospect of creating your dream home and potentially reducing long-term expenses. To help you make an informed decision, let’s explore some critical factors:

Q: What is the average cost of building a new house?

A: Building a house can cost around $300,000 for a 2,000 square feet living space, which translates to roughly $150 per square foot. Additionally, if you don’t already own land, acquiring it can add a significant expense, varying greatly by location. The entire process, from design to move-in, can take anywhere from six months to over a year.

Q: Is it more affordable to renovate, buy used, or build new?

A: Generally, renovating an existing house is less expensive than purchasing a used one or building from scratch. Breaking down costs per square foot, renovations average around $100 per square foot, with minimal moving costs. Buying a used house costs approximately $120 per square foot, while building new averages around $150 per square foot.

Q: What factors contribute to the high cost of house renovations?

A: House renovation costs are primarily driven by materials and labor, with each accounting for nearly half of the overall remodeling budget. Labor costs are typically higher for renovations compared to new home construction, where they can be as low as 30% of the total cost.

Kitchen remodeling is considered to be the most expensive room to remodel due to additional plumbing, HVAC, electrical work, cabinetry, appliances, and detailed planning. Bathrooms rank second in terms of expense but are still behind kitchens by a significant margin.

Q: Which house renovations could increase the value of my home? 

A: One significant advantage of renovating instead of building new is the potential to significantly increase your home’s selling value. Even smaller remodel projects can boost home values. Here are some large-scale projects that offer a healthy return on investment (ROI):

  • Kitchen remodels (large or small)
  • Small bathroom remodeling
  • Deck or patio additions
  • Basement finishing
  • Attic remodels

Q: What are the benefits of building a new house?

A: Building a new house provides the unique opportunity to create your ideal home, perfectly tailored to your family’s needs and preferences. Additionally, if budget permits, you can choose the perfect location for your new home. Although the upfront costs may be higher compared to renovations or buying used, the long-term expenses of a new home can be substantially lower. Lower maintenance costs, energy efficiency, and reduced need for future renovations often make the overall costs comparable to other options over time.

Q: Which is better, renovating or building a new house?

A: There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as it depends on various factors. Consider the following questions to help guide your decision:

  • Do I have equity in my current home to consider?
  • What is the current state of the real estate market?
  • What are the financing costs for both options?
  • Is relocation a feasible option?
  • Do I have the time to wait for a new house to be built?
  • Is short-term or long-term money savings more critical for my family?
  • Is my family planning to grow larger?

By carefully evaluating these questions and considering your family’s needs and financial situation, you can make an informed choice between renovating your current home or building a new one to create your dream living space. Whether you opt for renovating or building, it’s essential to choose the option that aligns best with your vision for a comfortable and beautiful home.

Ultimately, the decision between renovating and building comes down to what resonates most with your vision for a comfortable and beautiful home. By carefully evaluating these questions and considering your family’s specific needs and financial situation, you can confidently make an informed choice. Remember, both options have their merits, and what matters most is choosing the path that aligns best with your dreams and aspirations for your living space. Consider factors such as your home’s current state, budget, real-estate market, financing options, timeline, and long-term priorities. Both options have merits, and it’s essential to choose the path that aligns best with your vision for a comfortable and beautiful home. 

With careful evaluation and consideration, you can confidently make an informed choice and create the home of your dreams. Contact us today and start the first step in building the home of your dreams!