How to Save Money on Your Resale Flat Renovation

November 18th 2022

How to Save Money on Your Resale Flat Renovation


Many homeowners embark on a resale flat renovation with the hope of saving money. After all, renovating an existing home is usually cheaper than buying a new one outright. However, the costs associated with flat renovation can quickly add up, leaving many homeowners feeling overwhelmed and stressed. 

Fortunately, there are ways to cut down on costs without compromising on quality. Here are a few tips on keeping your resale flat renovation costs under control and saving money in the process.

What Is the Average Cost of Renovating Resale Flats in Singapore?
The cost of renovating a resale flat in Singapore can vary greatly depending on the size and scope of the project. With that said, you can expect the costs to be anywhere from S$40,000 up to S$79,000. 

For instance, a 3-bedroom resale flat has an average renovation cost of S$40,000 to S$50,000. On the other hand, a 4-bedroom resale flat can cost anywhere from S$50,000 to S$58,000 for renovations. And a 5-bedroom resale flat can rack up from $68,000 to $80,000 for renovation costs. 

Of course, it also depends on many other factors such as the age of your resale flat, the condition of the property, the contractor you use, and more. If you require hacking or extensive work, you are likely to rack up a higher cost as well. 

Prioritise Your Renovation Needs
Before you start your resale flat renovation, sit down and make a list of all the things you want to change or improve in your home. Once you have a clear idea of what needs to be done, prioritise the items on your list based on importance. This will help you focus your budget and avoid overspending on items that are not essential.

Budgeting for Your Resale Flat Renovation 

Once you have a clear idea of what needs to be done, the next step is to start budgeting for your resale flat renovation. Begin by setting a maximum limit for your overall budget. 

Then, allocate funds for each individual item on your list. This will help you keep track of your spending and avoid going over budget. With that said, your renovation budget should not cost more than six times your monthly household income. 

It is best to have a 10 to 15% buffer to account for any unexpected costs. At the same time, remember to set a budget aside (we recommend around $10,000) for tackling important work such as plumbing and electrical works, doors, aircon units, and ceiling fans. 

Get Quotes from Multiple Firms 
When it comes to finding an interior designer or contractor for your resale flat renovation, it is important to get quotes from multiple businesses before finalizing your decision. This will help you compare prices and get the very best deal. 

With that said, when you get quotations from multiple contractors, be sure to provide contractors with the same list of specifications to ensure that you are comparing apples to apples. Once you have received all the quotes, take your time to review them carefully before making a final decision. 

Choose Quality over Quantity 
When shopping for materials and fixtures for your resale flat renovation, it is important to focus on quality over quantity. This does not mean that you should spend a fortune on high-end items, but you should make sure that the materials you select are durable and long-lasting. In addition, choosing quality over quantity will help you save money in the long run as you won’t have to replace items as often.

DIY Where You Can
Undertaking some of the work yourself can also help you save money on your resale flat renovation. If you are handy and have some basic home improvement skills, there are many tasks that you can do yourself to cut down on costs. For instance, you can paint the walls yourself or install new light fixtures. Just be sure to take on only what you can handle and leave the more complex tasks to the professionals. After all, the last thing you want is to DIY your way into a bigger and more expensive problem.

Reuse and Recycle

Reusing and recycling materials is another great way to save money on your resale flat renovation. If there are items in your home that are still in good condition, see if you can reuse them in your new design. 

For example, you can keep your existing kitchen cabinets and simply give them a new coat of paint. Or, you could replace the doors and drawer fronts to give them a fresh look. If you have any materials that you no longer need, consider donating them or selling them online instead of throwing them away.

Renovate in Phases
If your budget is tight, another option is to renovate your home in phases. This means that you focus on one area of your home at a time and spread out the cost of the renovation over a period of time. 

For instance, you could start with the kitchen or bathroom and then move on to other areas of the house such as the bedrooms or living room. This approach can be a great way to get the renovation you want without breaking the bank. Renovating in phases is generally cheaper than renovating in one go because you can spread out the cost and take advantage of sales and discounts.

Pick Loose Furnishings Over Built-Ins
Loose furnishings like area rugs, lamps, and coffee tables are generally more affordable than built-in features like cabinets and shelving. They are also easier to install and can be easily replaced if you ever need to make changes to your design. So, if you are on a tight budget, focus on adding loose furnishings to your space instead of built-ins. 

Sell Items You No Longer Need or Declutter Wisely
If you are looking to save money on your resale flat renovation, selling items you no longer need is a great place to start. For example, if you have any furniture that you no longer use, selling it online or at a garage sale can give you extra cash to put toward your renovation. 

You can also save money by decluttering your home before you start the renovation process. This way, you will have less to pack up and move out of the way and you can avoid paying storage fees.

Choose Vinyl Flooring Over Hardwood

Hardwood floors are beautiful and classic, but they can be quite expensive. If you are looking to save money on your resale flat renovation, but wish to change up the flooring, vinyl flooring is a great alternative. Vinyl flooring comes in a wide range of styles and colours and it is much more affordable than hardwood. In addition, it is easier to install and maintain, making it a great option for those who are looking to save time and money.

Skip the Smart Home System
Installing a smart home system can be a great way to modernize your home and make your life easier. However, these systems can be quite costly. As such, if you are trying to save money on your resale flat renovation, you may want to skip the smart home system and focus on other areas instead. 

Utilize HDB's Bulky Item Removal Service
The Housing and Development Board (HDB) offers a bulky item removal service for items that are too large to be disposed of in your flat's rubbish chute. This service is free for flats that are located in an HDB estate. 

To make use of this service, you will need to contact your town council to arrange for a pick-up day and time. With that said, every area has different service timing, so be sure to check your area out and plan in advance. 

Be Patient
Finally, it is important to be patient when renovating your resale flat. If you can, avoid the temptation to rush through the process in an attempt to save money. This usually ends up costing more in the long run as mistakes are often made when people are in a hurry. If you take your time and plan each step of your renovation carefully, you will be much more likely to stay on budget and end up with the home of your dreams.

Renovating your resale flat can be a big undertaking, but it doesn’t have to break the bank. By following these tips, you can save money and end up with a beautiful home that you love.

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