Difference Between Remodel and Renovation

Remodeling and renovations are two terms that tend to be in common use in the construction field.


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Contractors, realtors, interior designers, architects, etc have an urge to use either remodel or renovate every time a client comes in house dismantle or refurbish office space.

Both can be considered as the two sides of a coin, for both reconstruct a place yet are polar opposites.

Remodel vs Renovation

The difference between remodel and renovation is that the former requires the total dismantling of a place and reconstructing the building be it home or office from scratch. A renovation is a minor form of redecorating in a child’s language that comes with lesser expenses and purchases only to change the general look of the place and not tamper with the architectural structure.

Remodel vs Renovation

Remodel houses the opportunity to either completely bring down a structure or partially dismantle it to create a newly designed architectural form that will fight into the modern and more accepted contemporary form of design.

It could also be that only the interior of the house is tampered with and brought down to bring in newer structural aspects.

Renovation is just as one would define redecorating. There is no construction mess involved in renovation with just stripping down the existing furniture, flooring, etc playing the major role here.

Given no damage to the original architectural form of the office or home, the renovation process tends to take time when in progress as it has to be with utmost care because after completion, they remain permanent until the next renovation.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonRemodelRenovation  
Professional AssistanceIt is requiredThe homeowners of the office staff can themselves do it
Government PermitsNeeds the permit to complete expansive remodelingNot required in any case
Increase the Property Value at the Time of SaleDoes increase the valueDoesn’t have much of an effect
Better for Long Term UseHas a long term guaranteeNot necessarily for long term
ExpensesExpensive as it involves reconstructingNot as expensive

What is Remodel?

Remodeling has been a word used since times immemorial by construction site specialists and experts like interior designers to bring about a great change in the structural outlook of a building or architectural form.

It includes demolishing and reconstructing giving a lot more expensive to the clients of constructors.

Sometimes, everything other than the foundation of the building under consideration is taken out.

Only after this is a new form of architecture is introduced into the same space thereby changing the whole area surrounding the construction too.

But remodeling is not only about destroying a building and reconstructing.

It may also include combining different elements of a house or the space taken into consideration and bringing about a hybrid creation within the same place.

For example, a kitchen is taken into consideration for remodeling.

This could mean that the owners want it to be made into an additional room or even want to expand the kitchen area by breaking down walls of adjacent rooms.

Remodeling is all about transformation. The entire nature and essence of the building in consideration are drastically given a completely new look be it in the interior or the exterior.

Other forms of remodeling a place are either by converting an open empty hallway into a balcony to bring in more shine and sunlight into a closed place thereby giving it a new and refreshed look.

Most of the processes under remodeling of a building involve processes like breaking down walls, expanding the area, adding plumbing and electrical lines, bringing in heating ducts, etc.

Remodeling is always a large-scale project that comes with a lot of hassle and mess such as gaining permits from the government offices.

Permits are needed if the remodeling includes expansion in the exterior of the house and may increase the building tax of the home or office.

But if the remodeling project stays within the construction like adding in a new kitchen island or removing walls connecting rooms then no permits are required.

What is Renovation?

Renovation is a term often used as a synonym for redecoration, but only in a professional manner by realtors and architects.

In reality, renovation doesn’t require assistance from architects as there is no rebuilding required.

In general, renovation can be classified as fixing up minor flaws within a room or in any part of the house or changing the house interior to match the inner aesthetics of the owner or the people who reside there.

The original construction of the building is never altered and therefore these are construction costs in renovating a place.

Renovations are always seen as ways to twist the interior that includes the furniture, painting of walls, wallpaper, or even the flooring to give the desired look for the place.

In the case of renovations, a room remains a room or a kitchen remains a kitchen, only that its furniture might be rearranged or replaced.

There are many processes to keep in mind while renovating.

If the floorings are being changed, then care must be taken on the electric wires that run beneath the floors according to the initial and original construction of the building.

New updates on the furniture, lighting, or even replacement of old windows or doors.

Repair works are also included under renovations.

This can be categorized as repainting, laminating, waxing the floors, shinning of wood, reinstalling, and even replacing older systems of computers, electrical units, music systems, etc.

Renovation is a small-scale project without a large expense factor and lesser mess and hassle.

Main Differences Between Remodel and Renovation

  1. While in remodeling the basic and original construction of the house might be changed, no such changes in the construction are seen when renovating a place.
  2. Renovations don’t require permits from the respected government offices to be carried out without hassle, whereas in the case of remodeling, a permit from the government is a must especially if changes in the exterior of the building are a part of the plan.
  3. Remodeling is expansive as it is always a part of a large-scale project, unlike renovation that is usually a small-scale project, with the intentions of the client being only to increase the sale value of the house or for the house to match his/ her interior décor dreams.
  4. In remodeling, the major cost factors are bringing down existing parts of the house and adding in more constructional and architectural features whereas in the case of renovation, the cost factors are all minor including repainting, an additional purchase of new furniture, replacing old window panes and doors, etc.
  5. Professional assistance is a need in remodeling as the constructional activities have to be monitored by an expert architect or constructor so no lapse in construction could be possible while renovations can be done by the home owners themselves if they have a good sense of aesthetics.
Difference Between Remodel and Renovation


  1. https://www.mdpi.com/36476
  2. https://mail.ijrer.org/ijrer/index.php/ijrer/article/view/6218
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