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The line between renovation and demolition

Making big changes to your house requires lots of detailed planning and research. Choosing whether to renovate a property or demolish it entirely is not an easy decision to make and there are lots of factors to take into consideration. We’ve put together some useful tips to help you as you ponder the process.

Initial things to consider

The financial and practical implications of demolishing a house in order to build something new are the first issue to discuss. You need to work out how much a renovation would cost and compare it to how much a complete rebuild would cost. It may be that by the time you’ve stripped and gutted the entire inside of the house, you may as well have knocked down the walls and started from scratch.

With regards to practical reasons, what we mean here is whether it would be possible to carry out a demolition. For example, is your property a listed building? Is it structurally sound enough to renovate? The structural integrity of the building is key – with over 40 years of architectural experience, our team can provide a free consultation to discuss this with you.

Building regulations and approval

Planning permission is essential to consider. It is often much easier to get planning permission for a renovation project, as opposed to building an entirely new house. We would advise you start applying for planning permission as early as possible to avoid any lengthy delays to your project.

The environmental impact will also need to be taken into account. If your property is demolished and rebuilt, your local council may well be more inclined to reject planning permission on the grounds of a ‘non-environmentally friendly’ solution.

Advantages of demolition

There are many positives that come with knocking down and rebuilding a house. New-build projects are often zero rated for VAT, which is a massive financial bonus. This is why it’s so important to take the time to financially plan both options before making a final decision.

Internal layout is also something to think about. Maybe there are some living spaces that don’t take full advantage of the sunlight and are in darkness at the wrong time of day. Alternatively, maybe the bedrooms are currently situated at the front of the house, near a busy road. By rebuilding the property, you will have the complete flexibility to change the layout within the plot – making the house more bespoke to your wants and needs.

Final thoughts

For some more reading on renovations in particular, Mike Holmes often has some great tips, “Take care of the exterior envelope of your home before you start picking décor. Work from the outside in. That means the roof, the walls, and the foundation.”

This makes perfect sense, but it is all too easy to get wrapped up in having the perfect kitchen units, or the carpet of your dreams. Structural integrity is key though – it’s all well and good having amazing internal features, but when the walls start moving and cracks appear, they seem a little less important in the grand scheme of things.

If you would like more advice on whether you’re better off renovating or demolishing, please feel free to contact us today.



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T: 01638 662393

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96 Kensington High Street London W8 4SG
Studio 2 4 The Highlands Exning Newmarket Suffolk CB8 7NT
T: 01638 662393
The line between renovation and demolition