How to Plan a House Renovation

2nd July 2024

By Graham Matthews

Renovating a house is a big job that requires plenty of research and planning. It’s worth it in the end though to achieve the home of your dreams and add value to a property. The costs, timeline, and scale of work for UK home renovations vary but good preparation is vital.

You might be thinking about renovating your entire house or just focusing on doing up one room like the bathroom or kitchen. Whatever the size of your ambitions there are many considerations and steps to consider before putting plans in place. Clearing space is one of them where our man and van services can help.

To ensure everything runs smoothly when renovating a room or your entire home we’ve compiled the key things in this house renovation checklist and answered some common questions. Discover how to plan a house renovation with these steps to reduce the risk of delays and issues when creating your dream home.

man doing home renovation work.

Where to start with 
a house renovation

Figuring out where to start with a house renovation may seem overwhelming if you plan to remodel every room. Even just refurbishing the kitchen can seem like a big job. Home renovation projects are all different, so your starting point might depend on your specific plans.

There’s no set order you must follow but it’s advisable to consider these steps one by one before you start a house renovation:

  • Budget and finance options
  • Property survey
  • Hire a designer or architect
  • Apply for planning permission (if required)
  • Find a builder and relevant tradespeople
  • Assess access and waste removal needs
  • Schedule the work
  • Conduct a snagging survey

How much does a house renovation cost?

How much house renovation costs depends on the specific nature of the job. Factors that affect the price of home renovations include the work being carried out, the builders used, if planning permission is needed, how long the renovations take, whether you use an architect, and any unforeseen circumstances.

Remodelling just one room could cost a few thousand pounds and should be cheaper than a full home refurbishment. Loft conversions and extensions are generally more expensive than renovations too. Factors such as your location, size and age of the property, and scale of the work affect house renovation costs. Request a few quotes from builders for an accurate price.

How long does a house renovation take?

A house renovation can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months. It depends on similar factors that affect the cost of refurbishing your home, such as the scale of the project, your location, access, and unforeseen circumstances. This is a rough idea of how long certain home renovation work could take:

  • Kitchen renovation – four to 10 weeks
  • Bathroom renovation – three to six weeks
  • Loft conversion – seven to 12 weeks
  • One or two-storey extension – eight to 16 weeks

House renovation steps

Effective planning should help your home renovation run smoothly, whether you’re remodelling the entire property or just one room. Follow these steps to renovate a house so you’re properly prepared before the building work begins.

Work out a budget and insurance

Before planning any home renovations you must work out what you can realistically afford. Otherwise, you may have to pause work partway through if you run out of funds. Once you’ve got an accurate idea of what you can spend on home improvements you can assess the scale of the project.

You might find it would be a stretch to do everything you want at once, so have to change your plans to just focus on one or two rooms. Ensure you leave aside an emergency fund in case any unforeseen circumstances crop up. You’ll also need to inform your home insurance company about the work to check the renovations are covered.

kitchen renovation with plastic sheets over the counter and appliances.

Consider the property needs 

No home renovation project is the same, so consider the specifics of your property. Does its age affect the potential work? Will any original features be impacted? Is planning permission required to carry out the improvements? These can all affect the timeline and costs, and you might need to do a little extra work beforehand.

There should also be clear and easy access for builders, their equipment, and supplies. If you’ve got a garden used for access it’s a good time to tidy it up and clear any paths to make life easier for builders getting in and out of the home. Use our garden waste guide for clearance tips.

Find reliable builders

When you know what home renovations you plan to make, it’s time to enlist some professional help. You may want the advice and services of designers and architects if you’ve got big plans. For smaller renovations, you might just want to work with builders, plumbers, and electricians to sort out the refurbishments.

Ask friends, family, and neighbours for any recommendations first, especially if they’ve had the same kind of home renovations done. It’s likely you’ll also look online to find the help you need. Always read the reviews and try to see if there are any case studies including photos and videos of similar jobs.

It’s a good idea to contact a few builders to get an idea of what each one offers. You can also then compare quotes and seek any expert advice you require before making a decision. Take your time as agreeing to such work is a big and expensive job, so you want to get it right.

builder laying bricks.

Confirm the timeline

Working with your chosen builders you can then create a clear schedule of works. This outlines every job they’ll carry out in order for your home renovation project. It provides peace of mind that nothing is missed and forms some proof of agreement for the work to keep it on track and within budget.

Confirm the timeline with your builder. They can advise on any possible delays or price changes for materials, scheduling issues due to other work, or supplier problems. The schedule of works should make it clear who is responsible for ordering materials so there are no delays or crossed wires.

Declutter and arrange rubbish removal

Clear all the rooms set for renovations so there’s easy access and space for the refurbishment work to start. As well as moving furniture about, now is the prime time to throw away anything you no longer need. If you’re planning extensive renovations then it could be a good time to consider a complete house clearance.

Hiring temporary storage space is another option for big items you want to keep but could do with moving out while renovations happen. You could also box up belongings and move into other rooms not being remodelled or keep them with friends and family. Declutter and move furniture in advance, otherwise it could delay the work.

Adjust your living arrangements

Think about how the renovations will impact your daily life. Even if it’s just a bathroom renovation, you won’t have access to these facilities during refurbishment work. Ask if you can use a neighbour’s house or consider moving out while the work is underway. For extensive home renovations, this might be necessary.

The builders should explain the timeline and advise on how long you could be without electricity, gas, and water in certain rooms. Plan around this to minimise the impact. For example, empty the fridge and freezer if you’re having a kitchen renovation and there’ll be no power in the room for a few days.

Prepare for the builders

Make some final preparations before your home renovations start. Cover anything remaining in any rooms to avoid them getting coated in dust. Ensure all walkways are clear (and possibly put plastic sheeting down on carpets. And have plenty of biscuits and cups of tea available to improve morale for the workers.

At Divert, we’re experts when it comes to dealing with waste in preparation for a home renovation. You can read our guide to domestic waste or speak to us for a free quote for one-off waste removals – call 0333 444 0118 or contact us online.

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