What Is the Difference Between Renovation and Remodeling 

Rohan Mathew




Renovation and remodeling are commonly used terms in construction and real estate. Although most people mistake one for the other, there exists a significant difference in definition, costs of undertaking each, type of materials involved, and other aspects. Beaver Building & Remodeling has got your back if you’re looking to build/remodel your kitchen, bathrooms, or doors, and other areas of the home. They have the best building remodelers the market can offer, and their contractors are professionals in handling anything from building to remodeling from anywhere.

Remodeling vs. Renovation 

Although often used in the construction arena, the terms renovation and remodeling are most commonly interchanged. But that is not the case with their real implications. While remodeling entails creating something new, renovation deals with the restoration of property to its previous state.

Building Renovation

In renovation, the building retains its original function. A bathroom remains a bathroom while a kitchen maintains its duties in the home. The only differences are the adjustments and tunings made to the building. A renovation contractor can decide to repaint the bathroom walls and cabinets, install new flooring, or update some old features.

In other cases, the contractor can choose to rebuild bits of the structure, especially when certain parts like wood are rotten and insufficient.

There are many reasons to renovate your space. While you might be looking to revive your kitchen, bathroom, and living rooms to their original state, others might want to renovate to step up the building value before selling the listing. The project doesn’t require much, therefore often perceived as small-scale. Below are a few more instances of renovation:

  • Repainting
  • Updating appliances
  • Installing new windows
  • Updating light fixtures
  • Incorporating new hardware
  • New flooring
  • Replacing hardware and installing new ones
  • Replacing old systems

Building Remodeling

Unlike renovation, remodeling goes as far as altering the overall outlook in the design and structure (on certain occasions). It can implicate transforming a space to adopt a new function henceforth. That means the original purpose intended for space is completely altered and replaced by a new role.

For example, you can decide to expand your bathroom, which might involve breaking the existing wall and repositioning a new one, or maybe you want to change the kitchen layout. In that case, the kitchen appliances like the cabinets, sink, and fridge will assume a new space.

Remodeling can also be a simple adjustment as flipping a home office into a guest bedroom. As long as the original purpose is changed, that’s remodeling. Below are a few more building adjustments that fall under remodeling:

  • Changing the kitchen or bathroom layout
  • Building new walls
  • Tearing walls
  • Joining two rooms into a single room
  • Adjusting the position of the ceiling
  • Adding plumbing
  • Installing heating/cooling duct

The Difference in Cost Between Renovation and Remodeling 

Remodeling projects often cost more compared to renovations. This is because of the complexity level involved in remodeling, the need for building restructuring and design alterations, additional costs in plumbing, electric wiring, ductwork, and not to mention the labor costs from professional contractors involved. For instance, remodeling involves costlier materials due to the newly introduced structures.

The project’s scope also plays a vital role in the general pricing, let alone the amount of material needed. This makes renovation less expensive to execute because it’s a less complex project anytime. In a few instances, you may need a special permit before undertaking your remodeling project, in which case the overall cost increases. Here are a few more factors differentiating the two:

  • Time

Renovation projects are often minor touches like typical installations and repainting that consume much less time. On the contrary, remodeling demands extensive planning before the project commences, yet the project lasts for significant periods. For example, kitchens might take up to six months to remodel, whereas bathrooms often take less, like three months on most occasions.

  • The Extent of Customization

Renovation majorly aims to tune the appearance of your commercial or residential building and give it a modernized appeal. But the main structure remains intact. On the contrary, remodeling comes to alter the entire system and functionality. Maybe you want to merge your living area with your home office, or you’re looking to completely transform a space to your liking, having remodeling done is the best choice.

Choosing Between Renovation and Remodeling

Deciding whether to renovate your commercial and residential space or remodel is entirely up to you. You can look into a few factors like the project’s purpose, how much it will cost against your budget, availability, or how much of your space you’d like to transform. Having an expert assess the situation and offer professional guidance is also essential.