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How Long Does it Take to Renovate a House?

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There is no doubt that renovating a house is a big job. For many homeowners, however, it’s also a rewarding one as you’re left with a modern house likely to increase in value. But there are many factors to consider, from choosing the look and materials to hiring and overseeing the contractors. And in this guide, we’re looking at realistic timelines and how long you can expect it to take to renovate your house.

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The planning stage

Most people think renovation only includes the works carried out. That’s not quite the case, however, and the planning stage is when everything begins. Some people hire a project manager to reduce the stress, while others have a more hands-on approach. 

Whichever route you go down, remember that various factors in the planning stage can significantly impact the timeline. You might even need persimmon, which can slow things down. 

This is also the stage where you’ll get a better idea about how much it’s going to cost, and you might decide to change expectations based on quotes and budgets around the work. No matter your level of preparedness, there’s likely to be something you haven’t accounted for, especially if this is your first time. 

That’s why a schedule of work can help…

Schedule of work

The length of time it takes to renovate a house depends on the size and what you need to do in terms of renovation. Contractors, who often get a bad rep for not finishing projects on time, will also be required. Indeed, many renovation projects last longer than initially anticipated, even if you have the best contractors around. Houses can be complicated, and initial projects are often delayed if new issues, such as wiring complications, are discovered once the work begins. 

Therefore, you should temper your expectations. A good contractor will draw up a schedule of work before commencing. This essentially outlines everything that needs doing around the home, from start to finish. 

A schedule of work might look like:

  • Demolition work
  • Damp prevention
  • Plumbing
  • Electrics
  • Plastering
  • Flooring
  • Decorating
  • Final builders clean

The schedule of work will vary slightly depending on the work you have done, but it will give you a general timeline. Delays are common, so don’t be too disheartened if timelines are pushed back slightly. This is especially true for larger projects, such as extensions. 

Consider the type of work taking place

The length of detail involved with renovation plays a prominent role in how long everything takes. A new bathroom with cabinets and fixtures could take a few weeks, while one involving heated floors and new tiles might take many months. 

The scope of the project is vital for determining how long it will take to renovate a house. Let’s say the entire home needs rewiring. In that case, you can expect it to take longer than a property that only needs cosmetic touch-ups. 

Ultimately, it’s the same process as building a new home, only on a slightly smaller scale. There are also factors like delivery times to take into account. Some materials, for example, may take months to make, especially if they’re bespoke. 

Room-by-room analysis

Again, every renovation project will have its own unique timeline depending on the work that needs understanding. As a rule of thumb, though, you can expect the following when working on different rooms in the house. 

  • Additional room 5 to 15 weeks
  • Kitchen renovation – 3 to 12 weeks
  • Bathroom – 3 to 12 weeks
  • Loft conversion – 8 to 10 weeks
  • Roofing – up to a week
  • Rewiring – 5 to 10 days

The decoration part is usually one of the fastest, and it’s the structural aspects that lead to longer timelines. That’s why adding additional rooms is one of the most time-consuming elements of renovating a property. It needs structural implementation and building from scratch before the decoration work can even begin.  

Renovation timeline

Have a price and plan

It’s important to have a good understanding of the work required. Speak to a professional and start to get a feel for the real scope of work. Here is where budgets come to light, and you realise what is and isn’t possible. 

Get the right people

Contractors will undertake the bulk of the work, so hiring the right people is vital. The better the contractor, the more likely you will be pleased with the results. Sign a contract once you’re happy and get ready for the real work to begin. 

Initial work and gutting

Demolition is the first step, as the builders rip out the old and make way for the new. Everything from fixtures and fittings to wallpaper goes out the window here. Essentially, the home is stripped down to its bare bones. 

Get ready for the new

Whether it’s a room addition, new walls, skylights or upgrades to existing areas, this is the stage where the new home starts taking place. You’ll begin to see your new house taking shape. 

Plumbing and wiring

Alongside the new structures, plumbers and electricians will likely get to work. This could be the installation of the bathtub or sorting out the electrics for the house, ensuring walls have the correct sockets and that light switches are in place.

Decoration 

Once the major works are finished, the decoration begins. This includes painting the walls, adding wallpaper and laying the flooring. When this stage is finished, your new home is practically complete. 

Finishing touches

The finishing touches involve making sure everything works correctly and there are no minor works left to complete. The builders will also clean the property thoroughly to ensure it’s ready for you. 

Renovating timelines

There’s no set timeline for how long it takes to renovate a house. But you’re probably looking at around three months, if not a bit longer. Renovating a home is never easy, but it’s worth it. And by being well prepared and knowing what you want to achieve, you’ll likely enjoy a smoother process on your way to your dream home. 

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Last Updated: March 4th, 2022