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  • Writer's pictureZoe St Pierre

7 Money Saving Building Tips

Updated: Jan 25, 2019

Location, Location, Location

Every area has a ceiling price so do your research first on sites like RightMove or Zoopla. It's a common mistake to spend a fortune renovating your property only to discover that there is a limit to how much buyers are prepared to pay in that particular postcode. See what else have been done up to your spec to give you an honest guide to what is achievable.

Look For Hidden Gems

Don't be put off by depressing wallpaper, hideous bathrooms in avocado and unhygienic kitchens. These are relatively inexpensive to replace - think Ikea. What really costs money are things like new plumbing, heating, rewiring and replacing windows or roofs. I've said it before and I'll say it again - renovating an unloved home from the 60s and 70s can be turned into an amazing modern home with a bit of imagination using sites like Pinterest for inspiration.

Budget First

For a 3 bed semi, average costs are:

£7,000+ for a new boiler, central heating and hot water system

£5,000+ for rewiring

£10,000+ to replace your windows

The list goes on so make sure you can afford the work before you engage a Contractor.

Avoid Costly Layout Changes

If you are replacing your bathroom, it's a good idea to keep the toilet in the existing position as moving an existing soil vent pipe can add unnecessary costs. New bathrooms incl. labour are around £5,000.

Consider Adding Ground Floor Insulation

If you are redoing the flooring on a suspended timber floor, it's worth adding high grade insulation to reduce the heat loss by up to 92%!

VAT Savings

If the property has been lying empty for more that 2 years and you use a VAT registered contractor, the work will be charged at 5%. If the house has been empty for more than 10 years the VAT is zero rated but the renovation costs will be a lot more.

Be Considerate

During construction, if you are living at the house, try to move out of the room/rooms that have work underway. It's really costly to keep asking your builder to move furniture or to tidy up after you just so they can start work. They will charge you for all the additional time wasted on site.


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