home and interiors

Refurbishment Vs. Renovation: Choosing The Right Approach


Are you considering structuring your home but are unsure whether to employ the renovation or refurbishment approach? If yes, you have come to the right place. Regarding refurbishment and renovation, there are several differences between these two; let’s find out.

Understanding Refurbishment And Renovation

To get the best results, understanding the basic concepts of refurbishment and renovation is vital; let’s first understand these two:

What Is Refurbishment?

Refurbishing is all about upgrading the existing features of your house to enhance its appearance. In simple terms, it is polishing the products of your property in order to maintain their original structure.

For example, replace your old windows with new ones and change your rooftop tiles to make your house look like a newly built one. The refurbishment projects generally take less time to complete. Home refurbishment in London is quite affordable compared to other methods of giving a new look to your home.

What Is Renovation?

Renovating your home means making more impactful changes or replacements. It is just like rejuvenating or reviving your space. Usually, the renovation process includes building new walls, dividing your space, and buying new appliances in your kitchen. Renovating your space is like creating anything from scratch to rebuild your home.

Differences Between Renovation And Refurbishment

It’s critical to recognize the difference between refurbishment and renovation when considering a home redesign. So, below are the differences between these two:

  • Renovation usually includes some structural changes, whereas refurbishment is about improving the appearance without any major changes in the space.
  • In renovation, it can take time to complete the project; the time required depends on the scope of the project. Refurbishment takes less time than renovation.
  • In renovations, there are some significant structural changes, which is why it requires more permits as compared to refurbishments.


To understand better, below is a comparison table:

Comparing renovation and refurbishment

Are There Any Similarities Between Refurbishment And Renovation?

Yes, there are! You have seen some of the key differences above; however, even though there are differences, their aim is similar, that is, to enhance the look of the property and increase its value. Some of the similarities are:

  • In both, the aim is to improve the quality of the space, be it in looks or functionality.
  • Both refurbishment and renovation require planning. After all, when you are making changes to any space, it should be well-planned to avoid any errors.
  • In both of these projects, to get good quality work, hiring a professional works in the favour.

How To Select Between Renovation And Refurbishment

It is not easy to select the right approach for yourself between renovation and refurbishment. You have seen above the differences and similarities; however, to pick one, consider the following factors:

Consider The Cost

To understand which is a better option for you, cost comes up as one of the vital factors. Both refurbishment and renovation work to improve the property; however, there is a cost difference; let’s find out.


Renovations involve making adjustments to the property, including structural and layout changes. The cost is higher because there are some intricate procedures. Also, the cost of renovation depends on the size of the project.


As compared to renovation, the refurbishment costs are lower as you are not causing any major changes; it is only improvements. Repainting, replacing, etc., require less time, thus less money. However, it also depends on what materials you are using.

Many factors affect how much remodelling or repairing your home will cost. These variables include the project’s size, location, materials needed, and the difficulty of the work. After compiling a list of all the chores, determine your budget. Select the option that best suits your spending limit. This will help you stay away from going over budget.

Evaluate your home’s condition.

To decide which one you should go for, you must evaluate your home’s condition. The professional will give you a thorough report and assess your property.

Renovation: If there are any safety concerns, including electrical issues, foundation cracks, etc, it is necessary for a renovation process.

Refurbishment: You can opt for refurbishment if you only have to make some minor changes, such as changing the wall paint, adding new furniture, etc.

Legal Requirements

Making enhancements to your space is a rewarding experience; however, there are some permits that you need to acquire for both refurbishments and renovation:


For refurbishments, you will need the following permits:

  • Planning permission

This permit ensures that your project is within the local development plan and does not impact the neighbourhood plan.

  • Work approval permit

You have to get this permit by submitting any of these securities

  • Surety bonds
  • Letter of credit
  • Cash deposit


For renovation, you will need the following:

  • Planning permission

If you are going to have some major changes to your property, you will need to have planning permission. Just like refurbishments, ensure that the changes are done within the rules of the local development plan.

  • Building Permit

You will need a building permit if there are structural changes such as changing the size of the room., adding plumbing fixtures, removing or adding walls, and adding doors or windows in structural walls.

  • Party wall agreement

If your house or space shares a wall with the neighbouring property, before making any significant changes, you will have to attain a party wall agreement.

For both refurbishments and renovation, you will have to get these permits. However, refurbishment requires fewer permits as there are no significant changes. To ensure that your plans are compliant, you can speak to qualified professionals and architects.


Final Verdict: Refurbishment Or Renovation

As seen above, renovation and refurbishment have several differences, and to pick one, you have to consider several factors. For example, if you only want improvements, then refurbishment is the way to go. Comparing these two, refurbishment requires less time, less money, and fewer permits. However, if your property has some major structural changes, opt for renovation. You can get a clear idea by doing a thorough evaluation of your home. Prior to choosing a particular procedure, you must also take your money into account.



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