Renovation and remodeling are the two most common words used in construction, real estate, interior design and contracting. However, there is a significant difference between them. To renovate means to “revive” or restore something to a previous state through upgrades – repainting, refacing, restoring. Remodel, on the other hand, is to restructure the state of something, to “remake” essentially. 

What Does Renovation Really Mean?

In the broadest sense, renovation means to make new again. When you apply this definition to renovation or construction in general, it could mean anything. From repairing to installing new fixtures to adding finishes and refacing cabinets.

No matter the kind of renovation work, the original design is never changed dramatically. An office remains an office and kitchen remains a kitchen. Rather, it is simply upgraded, repaired or just tweaked to complement the rest of the office or home design. Renovation is also done to match new or revised standards.

What About Remodeling?

Unlike renovation, which involves reviving or repairing the house, remodeling means altering the layout, structure, or purpose of a room. This entirely changes the structure of the room, kitchen, or whichever part is being remodeled. A complete transformation of the design, layout, structure, or the style of a room is a remodel.

Remodeling: A Better Solution To Poor Home Design

Having a poor home design or layout can really affect you. Imagine having to walk through one bedroom to get to another. Or if the water supply lines to your kitchen are installed in the exterior wall, the water will freeze nearly every night. Simply renovating won’t help you solve these issues; and redesigning or remodeling is the solution

Renovation: Better Return On Investment (ROI)

Renovation costs are comparatively less than remodeling. Because renovation involves repairing and updating basic features, you will receive a better ROI than remodeling.

Yes, you can completely change a room or maybe add a master bedroom to your home (remodeling) but it will fetch you a lower ROI than renovationing Why? Because upgrades tend to increase property value, even with a huge home or office building, if your roof leaks or the door is old and rusty, buyers or tenants may have a harder time wanting to move in. 

If you have read “Remodeling Magazine” then you may be aware of the annual cost vs. value analysis of home improvement projects. This analysis states that renovation projects, such as re-siding a home, bring approximately 98% net ROI. However, in the case of a major kitchen remodeling, it only yields about 60% ROI.

Renovation vs. Remodel: Which Costs More?

Remodeling projects almost always cost more than renovation projects. Remodeling involves complex design and layout changes. This requires more man-hours, materials, machinery, electric expenses, and much more.

To Summarize:

  • Renovation involves upgrading basic features, repairing, etc. While remodeling involves complex movement, construction, and or redesign.
  • Remodeling helps improve home design and layout, whereas renovation improves curb appeal.
  • Renovation tends to result in a better ROI.
  • Remodeling is often costlier than renovation.