Whether you recently bought a flat or simply want to freshen up your old home, it’s important to plan your finances properly. Talk to a Singapore home renovation company about your plans to get a quote. It’s also a good idea to do some research and find out more about the average costs of a home renovation in Singapore so you can start saving up, if you haven’t already. We’ve done some of the work for you! All of the figures mentioned in this blog are sourced from Qanvast.
Average costs of renovating HDB homes
|HDB flat type||Average cost of renovation if NEW flat||Average cost of renovation cost if RESALE flat|
|110 sqm (5 rooms)||$52,100.00||$65,200.00|
|90 sqm (4 rooms)||$42,600.00||$58,500.00|
|60 to 65 sqm (3 rooms)||$32,000.00||$42,600.00|
Let’s take a closer look at the various kinds of renovation work done in Singapore:
- Hacking (mainly costs of labour to hack and rebuild walls)
- Carpentry (cupboards, wardrobe, and customized storage)
- Masonry (tiling and flooring)
- Ceiling and partitions (false ceilings, box ups, partition walls, etc.)
- Electrical work (lighting, heater, data, ad power points)
- Plumbing work (taps, wash basins, shower sets, toilet bowls, etc.)
- Painting (ceiling and walls)
- Polishing and cleaning (including disposing and hauling debris, polishing the floor, cleaning the entire house)
- Glass and aluminium (mirrors, glass partitions, window panes, door and window grilles)
|Living room renovation costs (estimated)|
|Ceiling and partition||$1,200 – $3,200||$800 – $1,200||$200 – $800|
|Hacking||$700 – $3,900||$400 – $700||$100 – $400|
|Carpentry||$6,100 – $23,700||$3,400 – $6,100||$200 – $3,400|
|Masonry||$3,000 – $22,000||$1,300 – $3,000||$100 – $1,300|
|Kitchen renovation costs (estimated)|
|Carpentry||$6,900 – $17,900||$4,300 – $6,900||$100 – $4,300|
|Hacking||$900 – $3,200||$500 – $900||$100 – $500|
|Plumbing||$500 – $1,700||$200 – $500||$100 – $200|
|Masonry||$3,900 – $11,300||$1,300 – $3,900||$200 – $1,300|
|Bedroom renovation costs (estimated for one bedroom)|
|Carpentry||$7,500 – $33,700||$4,400 – $7,500||$200 – $4,400|
|Hacking||$1,000 – $5,200||$600 – $1,000||$100 – $600|
|Ceiling and partition||$1,100 – $5,000||$600 – $1,100||$0 – $600|
|Masonry||$2,800 – $8,800||$1,300 – $2,800||$200 – $1,300|
|Bathroom renovation costs (estimated for one bathroom)|
|Hacking||$1,000 – $6,800||$500 – $1,000||$100 – $500|
|Carpentry||$2,100 – $9,000||$1,200 – $2,100||$200 – $1,200|
|Masonry||$5,700 – $17,500||$1,500 – $5,700||$100 – $1,500|
|Plumbing||$800 – $3,900||$400 – $800||$100 – $400|
|Other works (estimated)|
|Cleaning and polishing||$1,700 – $13,900||$1,100 – $1,700||$300 – $1,100|
|Painting||$1,800 – $4,100||$1,400 – $1,800||$200 – $1,400|
|Glass and aluminium||$5,100 – $13,800||$2,600 – $5,100||$400 – $2,600|
|Electrical||$3,200 – $7,700||$1,700 – $3,200||$300 – $1,700|
These figures are for illustration purposes; you can get a more accurate quotation from a single for home renovation specialist.
What factors can affect the total cost of a home renovation in Singapore?
It’s important to keep in mind several factors when calculating how much you should budget for your home renovation project. Be sure to look at the following:
- The size of your home
- Its status (whether it’s a resale property or a brand-new property)
- Extent of work
- Who will do the renovation (whether a contractor or an interior design firm)
Renovating a bigger property is more expensive—that’s to be expected. A larger house requires more materials and more work to renovate, and all of this can inflate the final bill. Do note that condos, landed properties, and other private properties usually cost more to renovate compared to HDB flats because of how they are configured (usually featuring split levels or double height ceilings).It’s also more tempting to do costlier and fancier designs on these homes because they are not bound by the restrictions that usually apply to HDB apartments.
Did you know that resale flats cost more to renovate? Why? Because they typically come with old and run-down built-ins that have to be dismantled and properly disposed of. Many HDB flats that have been around for decades are not ideally laid out, prompting owners to splurge on masonry and hacking labour and materials just to get the door of the toilet to face the right way. Qanvast estimates that resale flats cost up to 40% more to renovate.
Your choice of materials can also make your project much more expensive than you expect. While luxurious heavy wood doors, granite countertops, and marbled bathrooms will surely make your flat look more refined, they can blow your budget if you don’t watch it. Luxurious materials also cost more to ship, transport, and install.
Extent of work
Some of the biggest items you need to watch out for include hacking of walls and tiles, masonry, carpentry, and disposal. Depending on your design, electrical and plumbing work can also inflate your budget. Painting is generally affordable, but if you have lots square footage to cover, it can get expensive pretty quickly, too.
Who will do the renovation
Who you hire for the job also plays a very important factor in your overall project costs. There are generally two choices: contractors or interior designers. The types and levels of service they provide are different from each other—and so will the final bill.
Contractors might be good enough for basic renovations. They work on a task-by-task basis; they will do all the work you want done, but they won’t give you any input on this theme or design. Any suggestions will probably be about function instead of aesthetics. When you hire a contractor, you have to plan as well as manage the entire project by yourself. This can be our real challenge especially because full-flat renovations take many weeks to complete.
Interior designers offer more comprehensive services. From professional design (including floor plans and 3D renderings) to scheduling and management of the entire project—they handle it all. Expect to pay a project fee aside from the actual renovation costs. It’s more expensive to hire an interior design firm but it is also often the best option if you want to achieve your vision of a dream home, perfectly built according to your lifestyle and specifications. You can also be sure that the flow, layout, and decor of your living space follows established design principles.
How to save money on your home renovation project in Singapore
There are some things you can do to make your home renovation more affordable. First, try to buy ready-made furniture instead of having them built in. Carpentry work is expensive, after all. In with so many options in furniture shops these days, you will likely find the exact piece you need. Readymade furniture actually has its advantages. You can move it around should you want to change out the layout of your space—and that’s something you cannot do with built-ins.
Another trick is to overlay tiles instead of the hacking. This is the cheaper and simpler solution in most cases. Hacking as you probably know is expensive and requires masonry work after. Perhaps you can simply overlay the walls or floors you want to renovate with materials like laminate or tiles.