House renovation: costs, process & planning

If you want to renovate your home, you should first do some thorough planning and get an overview of the costs and project steps involved.

An overview of costs and project steps is important in a renovation

An overview of costs and project steps is important in a renovation project. (image: lightkeeper/clipdealer.De)

Renovate house and keep an eye on costs

Renovating a home is an extensive and expensive project. In order for the refurbishment to run smoothly, it is necessary to plan the process as precisely as possible. If changes are made to the design during modernization, this usually involves time delays and additional costs.

It is also very important to first make a detailed planning of the renovation costs, so that the financial needs can be matched with the budget. Renovation costs are usually financed by three sources of money:

Buyers of a property should make sure which renovation measures are required before signing the contract. This applies in particular to older buildings, which are subject to mandatory renovation under the energy saving ordinance (enev) if the owner changes. In this case the energetic reorganization measures must be accomplished within two years. The renovation obligations may consist of renewing the insulation or having a new heating system installed and accordingly cause high modernization costs, which should be taken into account in the financing.

What are the objectives of the renovation of the house?

Regardless of the age of the property, there are various reasons why you want to have your house renovated:

  • Increase energy efficiency
  • Improving the visual appearance
  • Redesigning the floor plan
  • Raising the standard of equipment

In terms of sequencing planning, the following principles apply: "from the outside in" and "from the roof to the basement". First, the outer shell of the house is renovated before the interior work begins.

Determining the individual steps enables an accurate estimate of the time required and the project costs. All legal issues should be resolved and the necessary approvals obtained. If, for example, you want to expand the attic and therefore put dormers to ensure a standing height in the attic, you need a building permit for it. If one undertakes conversions or extensions without the building permit, the authority can order a deconstruction. The regulations of historic preservation must also be included in the planning of the renovation project.

Estimating the costs is an important prerequisite of further planning. The projected costs are compared to the available budget. If this budget is not sufficient to carry out all the actions, prioritization must be done. Renovations that are required by law are done first. Thus, ensuring the energy standard has priority over the construction of the winter garden, which only increases the comfort of living.

Procedure for a renovation project

Renovating a house usually follows the following schedule:

  • Roof renovation
  • Basement renovation
  • Renovation of the exterior walls
  • Installation of a new heating system
  • Interior improvement measures

Roof renovation

The roof renovation is inevitable in order to produce the prescribed energetic standard. Tiling the roof provides a tight exterior envelope. In addition, the condition of the roof truss must also be assessed. In older buildings, it is often necessary to replace load-bearing joists and also insulate the roof. There are several roof insulation alternatives, and their costs vary considerably. In conjunction with a roofing project, the common choice is above-rafter insulation, which is very effective but also relatively expensive. The cost of roofing, including rafter insulation, depending on the size and shape of the roof, is 20.000 to 30.000 euro.

Tiling the roof provides a tight exterior

Tiling the roof provides a tight exterior envelope. (image: jpchret/clipdealer.De)

Basement renovation

In the basement, it is also necessary to ensure that the outer shell of the house is tight, so that water can not penetrate. The cost of modernization for insulating the basement depends on its size and distribution and ranges from 2.000 and 4.000 euros.

Renovation of the exterior walls

The facade of the house is crucial for the overall look on the one hand and for energy efficiency on the other hand. Most energy costs can be saved with modern facade insulation, as a particularly large amount of cold penetrates through the exterior walls of the house and heat energy is released to the outside unused.

So-called external thermal insulation composite systems (ETICS) are usually used, in which the insulation materials are glued to the exterior wall and then plastered and painted. The cost depends on how large the house and how angled the facade (bay windows, balconies, projections) is. The average single-family home has a total cost of between 25.000 and 40.000 euro to. Painting the exterior costs between 3.000 to 4.000 euros.

Installation of a new heating system

When choosing a new heater owners have several options. The old boiler can be replaced with a new, energy-efficient condensing boiler. Partly this is connected with a change of the fuel from fuel oil to natural gas. Even more innovative is the use of renewable energy sources with a heat pump or wood pellet heating system. In older buildings, it must be expected that the piping must also be insulated and the radiators replaced.

The range of estimated costs is high, depending on the variant chosen, and ranges from 5.000 and 30.000 euros. If the owners decide to have a solar thermal system installed in addition in order to equip their house for the future, the costs increase again by 4.000 to 11.000 euros. The expensive solar systems do not only heat the domestic water, but also the rooms and thus contribute greatly to the reduction of energy costs.

Measures of interior finishing

When the energy renovation is completed, the interior work can begin. These include the following work packages:

  • Changes to the floor plan
  • Adding additional rooms or a conservatory
  • New electrical installations
  • Replacement of windows and doors
  • Replacing the floor coverings
  • Redesigning the bathrooms
  • Wallpapering or painting the walls
  • Installation of a new kitchen

In all measures there is a wide range in terms of cost and it depends on the available budget, which solution can be realized. A bathroom can be heated for 9.000 euro or for 30.000 euros can be redeveloped. Before making concrete plans for the interior, it is imperative to look at the budget. Additional financing slows down the modernization process, is usually more expensive and often upsets the overall calculation.

Renovating the house: how to finance the costs?

Who buys a renovation-needy house, the renovation costs which can be expected should already flow into the purchase decision and be dazzled under no circumstances by the allegedly low purchase price.

Property owners should build up reserves for repairs and modernization in good time, starting when they buy or build the house. The higher the saved equity, the easier it is to realize a renovation loan at favorable conditions. Different types of credit are available.

There are several ways to finance the renovation:

  • Construction loan
  • Installment loan
  • Building savings loan
  • Own contribution
  • Subsidies

Construction loan: amount of equity determines the interest rate

With the current favorable interest rates, it makes sense to tackle the renovation of one's own home and find out exactly about modernization loans. A renovation loan is a construction loan that is earmarked for the renovation project. Repayment is usually made in fixed monthly installments. The amount the bank grants the reorganization loan depends on the amount of equity and other collateral. Larger modernization loans require the registration of a land charge of the bank in the land register.

Installment loan: suitable for smaller modernization projects

If only heating for 10.000 euros is to be replaced, it is worth applying for an installment loan at the current low interest rates. A classical installment credit belongs to the credit types, which are not earmarked and with which also no land charge is registered. Furthermore, it is not necessary to bring in equity capital, but it is possible to finance the entire modernization costs with the loan.

Building saving loan: secure favorable interest rates now for later

In addition to the construction loan and the installment loan, there is the possibility of financing the renovation through building savings. In this case, homeowners first save a few years' worth of principal on their home savings contract and receive a low-interest construction loan when the home savings contract is ready to be allocated. Those who start building savings secure the interest rates in effect at that time for a renovation project in the future.

Own contribution: reduce costs with the muscle mortgage

Buyers of a house, who have the necessary education or experience and hard-working helpers, can also significantly reduce the cost of renovation with their own efforts. For many trades, material costs account for only 40 percent of total costs, while labor accounts for 60 percent. So it is possible to save more than half of the costs if you don't have to pay labor costs.

Subsidies: the government contributes to the renovation costs

Buyers can apply for subsidies from kfw (kreditanstalt fur wiederaufbau) or BAFA (bundesamt fur wirtschaft und ausfuhrkontrolle) for energy-efficient renovation of houses. For each residential unit in a house, kfw provides subsidies for energy-efficient renovation or age-appropriate conversion in the form of low-interest loans and repayment subsidies. BAFA grants can be applied for the installation of a new heating system.

If you buy a house that needs renovation, you should consider all the costs involved

Anyone buying a home in need of renovation should consider all the costs involved. (image: loonara/clipdealer.De)

Renovate house with cheap loans, subsidies and personal contribution

If the project "renovate house" is carefully planned, costs can be reduced and favorable financing can be realized. Government subsidies for energy modernizations and personal contributions reduce the financial burden and ensure that the house requires much less energy through the installation of innovative technology and modern insulation and permanently reduce utility costs.