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How Much Does It Cost To Renovate In Auckland 2021

The range for renovation costs is huge, but that’s because no two renovations are ever exactly the same

Different to a straight forward purchase like buying a bottle of milk or a new TV,  the scope for a renovation cost can differ significantly because there are so many factors and variables involved. For example, If two neighbour’s living in the same build of home renovate the exact same space in each of their homes, lets say a bathroom, it’s quite possible one of them could easily spend double what the other spends. That’s because one might want to reconfigure the entire room and have higher quality fittings, whereas the other just wanted to leave everything in place and use medium budget fittings. So, although home renovation costs are hard to accurately cost, below we will try to provide you some guidance about the range of costs for major home renovations in Auckland.

Whole Home Renovation Cost

Most Contracts offered by Qualified builders now (Any project valued at over $30k Inc gst must have a written contract by law) are broken down by task or by area of work and are priced off your Architectural plans. The areas of work for a whole home renovation cost can generally be broken down into three major categories: Labour, Materials, Architectural & Council Costs.

  • First, is the ‘labour’ charged by the builders. Although its called labour, it may also include items the builder buys like timber, nails, GIB, etc. Due to the fact that the cost of materials is somewhat standard, the cost of the labour category is largely dependent on what the contractor pays staff, subcontractors, etc. and this can vary a lot.
  • Second is materials, sometimes known as ‘finish materials’ which have to be selected by the homeowner. This includes things like taps & mixers, carpet, tiles, door-knobs, and even kitchen appliances if that’s included in the project scope.  The total cost of this category can vary greatly depending on the chosen materials, finishes and equipment. You can buy a shower mixer for $200 or $2000 and everything in between, so it can largely be influenced by the owners tastes rather than function.
  • The third category is for design, architectural, engineering and Council. This includes variables like the costs to develop plans by an architect, the costs to hire a designer (if needed), an engineer if the build requires one, Council and inspection fees. These fees are NOT included in a builders price, but some are able to offer this (WE CAN)

It’s important to understand what is included in the builders quote (as an allowance for example, if no defined kitchen design has been made, an allowance will be presented), and what needs to be purchased or organised directly by the homeowner(Sometimes items like landscaping and drainage may be left off as its not the builders expertise, or you have a plumber you have used before you want working on your project, so the builder could leave that out of their quote).  When it comes to the renovating costs discussed below, these are the total spend, area by area that can be reasonably accepted as what it cost to renovate in Auckland.

Home Renovations

Auckland Kitchen Renovation Costs

$18,000 – $100,000k+

Although the $ range of renovating costs above is very widespread, most kitchen renovations fall into the $20-60k range in Auckland. The common kitchen remodel cost will mainly be from a few categories: Kitchen cabinets,  bench tops, appliances and electrical (Lighting and switchboard upgrades).  So lets talk about the variables that can affect the total renovation cost: size, reconfiguration, materials (including appliances), and scope. 

Kitchen Size: This one is very easy to understand – the larger the kitchen, larger the cost to renovate. There are more materials required, and more labour it will take to install those materials. Additionally, larger kitchens usually include larger appliances which are more expensive and require more power, often requiring a switchboard upgrade. You’ll also want more lighting and maybe even feature lighting. More kitchen area generally means larger bench tops. 

Kitchen Reconfiguration: New kitchen renovations that replace the old cabinetry and plumbing, leaving it in the same location as the old kitchen is the most efficient and cost-effective way to remodel. Conversely, reconfiguring the kitchen design to something completely new will add to the renovating cost because ‘utilities’ like water, electrical, gas, and venting will need to be relocated in order to work with the new design. Also, removing and/or adding walls as part of the kitchen reconfiguration will add more costs for the same reasons. The costs of reconfiguring a kitchen design will vary depending on things like the need to remove load-bearing walls and the difficulty of running plumbing electrical and gas to the new locations.

Materials: The costs of materials can be staggeringly vast even though materials can be limited down to a few key areas – kitchen cabinetry, bench tops, Plumbing fittings and appliances. Home owners usually have three cabinet options.

  1. The low-cost DIY option, which is pre-fabricated cabinets which come in standard sizes called ‘flat packs’. (Bunnings or Kaboodle)
  2. Custom cabinets that are manufactured specifically for each kitchen based on the home owners design requirements. Usually made from low cost materials like chip board with a laminate finish.
  3. Custom kitchen cabinets made from solid and/or exotic woods finished in high quality varnish or custom painted colours with high grade finish. High quality hinges and soft closing drawers along with high end storage solutions make these kinds of kitchens feel luxurious the moment you walk into them.

Bench tops are similar in that they come in either:

  1. The pre-fab laminate variety that’s cheaper, but has limited size & customization.
  2. Custom slabs of granite, engineered or ceramic stone that give house owners a great variety of styles & finished but have to be ‘fabricated’ so you end up spending significantly more.
  3. Bespoke marble top that have natural beauty. Why marble? Two main reasons: it looks incredibly elegant, more so any other real stone used for worktops, and it is always cool to the touch (due to its poor heat-conducting properties) – a valuable functional trait in a hot, steamy kitchen. Marble tops may also be book marked for additional effect. An array of colours and natural veins, imported from around the world. The best marbles come from Greece, USA, India, Spain, Romania, China, Sweden, Germany and of course Italy.

Finally, appliance pricing can range from budget and cost-effective, to unimaginably expensive high-end brands like a La Cornue Stove that cost over US$500,000.

Scope of work: Although most kitchen renovations replace the old cabinets, bench tops, and appliances, the scope and cost can fluctuate depending on what the owner wants to include in their kitchen renovation. Select items may include things like floor or wall tiles, wood flooring, new LED lighting, customised backsplash and even wine fridges.

Home Renovations

Auckland Bathroom Renovation Costs

$15,000 – $100,000+

Most bathroom renovations in Auckland are closer to $20,000 for a smaller or guest bathroom and $40,000 for a larger, master bathroom. The average tiled walk-in shower bathroom costs $30,000. Let’s take a look at the total renovation costs, options, designs, and considerations a bit more.

Similar to a kitchen, the most efficient and cost-effective way to renovate a bathroom is to leave all the plumbing in the exact same location – toilet, vanity, shower, bath tub.  Relocating any of these means increased costs from re-routing water feeds and waste lines as well as removing and installing new electrical, lighting, exhaust, and potentially walls. Also to note, a substantial renovation that change sanitary locations may require Council Consent,

Bathroom renovation costs are allocated to items like floor tiles, shower enclosures or shower tile, vanity, bath tub, sinks, mixers, and lighting. In the case of a bathroom, it’s important to clearly understand what has been allowed in the building quote, as there can be a significant difference between various builders quotes depending on what one has included and one has not.

Let’s go over a few items that make up important portions of the bathroom renovation cost:

Low cost bathroom renovations ($5,000 to around $15,000) are primarily a cosmetic renovation and will cover a smaller bathroom size whilst using budget-priced materials and fittings. Budget renovations will need to keep plumbing and electrical items in thew same locations, while swapping out items such as the toilet, shower and vanity.

A standard priced renovation ($20,000 to around $40,000) is a middle-of-the-road renovation with both cosmetic and additional work, completed using standard range materials and fittings. Most people end up with a budget in the standard range, which includes the ability to choose more cosmetic options as well as upgrading but not massively changing plumbing or electrics. For instance, you might have a new, more upscale bathtub installed.

Higher end bathroom renovations. Sky is the limit.

Bathroom tile is expensive because it’s very labour-intensive to install and council compliant waterproofing is also required for shower areas with tile. If you wanted amazing mosaic glass tile, there is a huge amount of works that goes into placing the tiles. Regardless of the cost of the tile itself (which can certainly be expensive), this is a major cost of the project as it includes laying the entire floor, shower walls, shower floor and surfaces. The shower walls and floor also require the waterproofing under the tile, which adds another cost in this category. You’ll also need to consider Council consent costs.

Although there are certainly cost effective small flat pack vanities available in standard sizes, once you get into larger, two-sink vanities, the costs can easily move into the thousands of dollars. Large vanities can be purchased from retail outlets, but you may also prefer, or require a bespoke vanity that fits exactly into your space which will further increase the renovation cost. Additionally, if the larger heavier vanity is wall hung, extra framing in the walls may be required to support it. With custom vanities, you can also choose your stone or marble tops which increase the prices.

A free standing bath tub is often found in elegant master bathrooms. Prices just for a bathtub can range from as little as $1000, however prices can go up and over what the average Auckland home is worth – the Le Grand Queen tub costs an amazing US$1.74 million. So when it comes to bath tubs, it seems you may only be limited by your wallet.

Finally, plumbing fixtures can vary greatly in cost. If you are not fussy about mixers and showerheads, there are certainly cost-effective options. But if you’re trying to achieve a certain luxurious look or feel, you can find 24k gold or diamond encrusted taps or US$8000 shower heads

What to Do When You Can’t Afford To Renovate To Your Budget

If you find it impossible to complete the bathroom renovation design you want on your budget, then you will need to think of an alternate plan. Even if you can’t complete everything on your dream wish list, you can still give your bathroom a new and fresh look on a budget.

Ideas for alternatives that will suit anyone who can’t afford a complete renovation include:

  • Buying only a new bathroom vanity and Mirrors instead of replacing all the fittings
  • Installing new shower screens
  • Instead of replacing tiles, simply reline the walls and paint
  • Reduce costs by selecting lower priced fixtures and fittings
  • Invest in more light. Many bathrooms have insufficient light. Add new lighting and brighten up what you have.
  • Do any painting yourself at the end of the project.

Home Renovations

Whole House Renovation Cost

Whole home renovations are the most challenging to quote because the total renovating cost will largely depend on what’s included. Every Auckland home is unique and requires a specific scope to complete the owners chosen design. The only way to get a true, realistic cost to renovate is to invite several builders to provide a quote using the same set of plans and specifications.

One way to create a rough budget for a whole home renovation in Auckland is to separate it into its major areas.  You start with the most expensive areas, which are likely to be the kitchen and bathroom.(assuming these are all included in the renovation).  Based on the costs above for each of these areas, you can add these up to establish your overall budget. Then, you might add in the following basics, depending on which are included in your building project: carpets/flooring, replacement or new windows, interior/exterior painting, new doors, landscaping, any systems such as plumbing, electrical, heat pumps and roofing, etc. Just note, you’ll need to allow labour for a qualified tradesman to install all your chosen items in addition to the purchase price of the items.

The hardest part to work out a cost are the structural design elements if you are doing any reconfiguration of your space by adding or removing walls. The renovating cost of this will depend on your unique situation and the engineer’s design, which could include structural support, beams, foundations etc. Because this is just too difficult for the normal person to budget, your best bet is to get multiple builders quote. If there are structural elements, it means you’ll have to have a Council Consent to do the work. Get the builders to quote after the consent has been granted as the Council may change the submitted plans during their review process which means any prices you were looking at prior to Council submission will now change.

Renovation Cost Considerations

Size Matters

One of the biggest renovating cost components is size. Remodeling a small studio apartment in Manukau will be significantly cheaper than renovating a 5-bed, 4-bath Villa in Remuera. But for a rule of thumb- renovation costs per square meter average $2000-$4500.

Material Quality

High quality materials come at a higher cost, but you do have to factor in maintenance as well.

A cheaper material at the offset, like weatherboard, could prove to be more expensive in the long run, especially when compared to low-maintenance options like brick.

There are a vast range of products & materials available these days. Whatever material you device on, check that its Branz approved for use in New Zealand

Renovation Level

Some renovations involve only minor makeovers, such as renewing fixtures or changing the fittings. But if you’re planning to completely change the design of your home (including the locations of plumbing and electrical items), expect to pay more.

Location, Location, Location

Where you live can determine just how inexpensive or expensive your renovation will be. One of the biggest costs is labour and hourly wages which vary from suburb to suburb. Auckland traffic and parking can also be issue. You wont want to employ a South Auckland Builder for a renovation project on the North Shore.

Is the budget even realistic for your family?

One approach may be to phone around several builders in advance of the project and find out average costs. You might even invest in some concept plans to get a feasibility study done on your project to find out what your renovation costs. If you already have plans done by an architect, then secure at least three quotes from different builders. You should have an idea of whether or not the cost of a renovation fits within your budget.

If you are looking for builders that complete renovations in Auckland, give Auckland Builders & Renovations Ltd a call. 0800 BUILTNZ