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Setting A House Renovation Budget

Updated on August 23, 2012

Property Renovation

So I am in the middle of a property renovation. This is the second full renovation I have done plus one other that only needed minor modernisation. The good thing about having done this before is that, when it comes to setting a property renovation budget, I have all of the figures of the amounts I paid out from my previous project.

The thing about property renovation, in terms of budgeting, is that it is really easy to miss out on all of the small things that need doing and they will often add up to a considerable amount of money. I know that in the first renovation I went over my budget by probably about 20% after the extras came in.

So here I will set out my budget for this renovation - now obviously it depends on what kind of work needs doing and what specification of finish that you are aiming for as to how much it might cost for your own property renovation.

Major Renovation Costs

So the really big costs that you might incur in a property renovation are as follows:

  • Central Heating
  • Double Glazing
  • Building Work
  • New Bathroom
  • New Kitchen
  • Damp Proof Course
  • Rewiring

If you can do some of the work yourself then you can obviously save some money but there are a few trades that you might want to get someone in as they are specialised and may need some form of certification. If you are lucky then your project may not need all of these done and so you can save yourself some money.

Central Heating

If you need to install central heating then the cost will obviously depend on the size of your house and whether you can do the work yourself. If you do it yourself though you will need to get it certified by a CORGI registered engineer so you will really need to know what you are doing.

For my renovation, I have a 2 bedroom bungalow and so I only need 5 radiators and a towel rail for the whole house, plus obviously it is only on one floor so that will save on installation costs. The cost of buying a boiler and radiators from a trade plumbing centre varies between £1,000 and £1,800 plus VAT including copper pipes*, so that depends on quality and output of the boiler. So, depending on trade costs in your area, you could have a full installation from around £2,500 and upwards.

*figures from PlumbFix

Double Glazing

Luckily for me, both of the properties that I have renovated have already had double glazing installed so I have not had to get this costed up in my case. I did have to install a couple of new double glazed windows in the modernisation project and these cost about £300 per wondow. However, this was a while ago so the costs may have increased by now. I also had a full house fitted with double glazing which cost £1500 but again this was a while ago so I would budget at least £2,000 for a full double glazing install.

Shop around for quotes and special offers to make sure that you get the best deal.

There may be a lot of plastering work required after the electrical work has been done.
There may be a lot of plastering work required after the electrical work has been done.

Electrical Work

A very old house may need a complete rewire. However, even a newer house or a house that has had some work done may need the electrics to be looked at. The property that I bought needed a new consumer unit and it had a lot of makeshift sockets that had been attached to the outside of walls and in fact attached to a fireplace!

So for mine, I could have opted for a complete rewire (I was actually advised this after work had started) but I opted to get all of the wiring channeled into the wall, a new consumer unit and some new sockets put in. I was lucky enough to find a local electrician who was reasonably new to the job (but fully qualified) after a career change and who wasn't charging that much initially until he got a feel for the cost of jobs. So basically I got the job cheap. I got another quote for the same work and it was almost 2 times the amount he had quoted.

So, for the work I had elected to have done, the cost was about £1,500 from a big company but much cheaper from a local guy (probably a bit of difference is in VAT charged too).

A few things to note about the electric work are firstly, it is incredibly messy and everything will be covered in dust! So try and move as much out as you can and cover everything else in dust sheets! Also, check whether replastering is included. If you want to save money then you could replaster the channels yourself. You could also save money by creating the channels yourself but you may need some specialist masonry drilling equipment,

This bathroom needs a full refit but I reckon it can be done for £1500.
This bathroom needs a full refit but I reckon it can be done for £1500.

New Bathroom

Bathrooms can be expensive but there are easy ways to save some money if you are on a tight budget. The good thing about a new bathroom can be that it looks really good even if you use lower price materials. A new bath can cost only £100 and a toilet and sink can also be bought for around £150 or even less. Check out all available tiling places in your area (there are at least 5 near me) and you should be able to get a decent looking tile for around £12 per sq metre. Obviously you can buy a lot more expensive tiles than this but on a budget it can still look good.

So, then you just need to get taps. a bath panel and a plumber to fit it all. Getting a plumber to do the job is much cheaper than going to a bathroom showroom or DIY shop and getting an all in supply and fit package. The budget for completely refitting my bathroom is around £1500 and I am confident that this will look really good.

UK DIY Manual

The essential book for all DIYers and home renovators is this manual which has been in the home of Brits for decades and has instructions for all of those DIY jobs that you might have to do.
The essential book for all DIYers and home renovators is this manual which has been in the home of Brits for decades and has instructions for all of those DIY jobs that you might have to do. | Source

Complete Budget

OK, so let's cut to the chase and here I will list my complete budget for my renovation, hopefully not missing out any essential components:

Light fittings - £250
Tiles for bathroom - £170
Bath - £115
Toilet - £50
Sink - £50
Taps - £110
Bath Panel - £50
Bathroom fitter - £800
Central Heating - £2700
Kitchen Worktop - £150
Kitchen Fitter - £800
Kitchen Units - £800
Cooker/hob - £300
Paint - £200
Flooring - £800
Electrician - £800
Plastering - £300
Kitchen Taps - £50
Kitchen sink - £50
Back Door - £150
Guttering - £300
Fireplace - £100
Garden - £200
Internal Doors & Handles - £250
Skip - £180
Plasterboard - £150
Plaster - £30

So the total budget is £9,905 but some of these costs are estimates right now and also I have gone quite low spec on some things as the location of my property does not warrant a high spec finish. There will also be small added extras like hooks for hanging coats, sandpaper, PVA, buckets etc etc, just bits and bobs. I already have a lot of the tools that I will be needing so I don't need to buy them. I also have a £500 contingency.


So, really you can do a basic but full renovation (new kitchen and bathroom, some plastering, central heating or windows etc) for about £10,000 to £12,000. You will obviously need to add on for any big extras but you can deduct for any more work that you can do yourself.

Where more building work is required or an extension needs to be built you could add on anything from £5-15k.

I hope this has given you a good idea of many of the items that you need to budget for your home renovation. If you want more info about my renovation then I have a blog about it at My Bungalow Renovation.


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    • carol7777 profile image

      carol stanley 5 years ago from Arizona

      What a great and organized hub. This is super for someone thinking about doing a renovation or even if you know someone who is. Voted UP.