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How to define your renovation budget?

Renovating your home can be a big, costly endeavour to handle. Undertaking one when you have no prior experience is even more challenging and stressful. When it comes to costs for home renovations, preparing a realistic budget will keep you sane and prevent you from seeing your dollar bills fly off. We have created this guide to help you avoid overspending on your next renovation project.

Factors that will determine your renovation costs

The majority of renovation costs is made up of items like materials, carpentry works and furnishing. Other costs to consider are hacking, partition, ceiling, plumbing, electrical works, painting and cleaning.

Other factors to consider include whether your new home is a new or resale HDB flat, landed property or condominium. These factors will have different cost implications due to different expectations of quality of materials and workmanship.

We have included this Qanvast calculator to help you understand your renovation costs based on prevailing market rates.  The types and the quality of these materials are considered, but quality of workmanship is not factored in as they vary from company to company.

Link for Qanvast calculator


Average renovation cost by type of apartment

According to Qanvast, a four-room apartment in Singapore should cost around SGD$53,000 on average for a standard home renovation in 2020. However as stated above, this cost also depends on a variety of other factors. 

To give an example, the range between the lowest possible renovation cost vary between S$40,000 to S$110,000 depending on the choice of materials, workmanship and complexity of design.

For a three-room apartment, the average cost to renovate a 3 room flat is SGD$32,000 and a 4 room flat is SGD$42,000. Naturally, a bigger 5-room flat is going to cost more with an average of S$52,000 for a new flat, and S$65,000 for a resale flat.

Average renovation cost by type of work

The cost of renovation varies according to the numbers of bedrooms, as they vary in square footage size. 

However, we are aware that some people may choose to renovate only certain parts of the home instead of the entire home.  Therefore, we compile below the estimated cost broken down by types of rooms and types of work, using the standard 4 room HDB flat as a guide.

Living and Dining Rooms

Type of WorkLightMediumHeavy
HackingSGD$100 – $400SGD$400 – $700SGD$700 – $3,900
MasonrySGD200 – $1,300SGD1,300 – $3,000SGD$3,000 – $22,000
CarpentrySGD$200 – $3,500SGD$3,500 – $6,000SGD$6,000 – $24,000
Ceiling & PartitionSGD$200 – $800SGD$800 – $1,200SGD$1,200 – $3,000

Bedroom (Each)

Type of WorkLightMediumHeavy
HackingSGD$100 – $600SGD$600 – $1,000SGD$1,000 – $5,000
MasonrySGD200 – $1,300SGD1,300 – $3,000SGD$3,000 – $9,000
CarpentrySGD$200 – $4,500SGD$4,500 – $7,500SGD$7,500 – $34,000
Ceiling & PartitionSGD$100 – $600SGD$600 – $1,200SGD$1,200 – $5,000


Type of WorkLightMediumHeavy
HackingSGD$100 – $500SGD$500 – $1,000SGD$1,000 – $3,000
MasonrySGD200 – $1,300SGD1,300 – $4,000SGD$4,000 – $11,000
CarpentrySGD$200 – $4,500SGD$4,500 – $7,000SGD$7,000 – $18,000
PlumbingSGD$100 – $200SGD$200 – $500SGD$500 – $1,800

Bathroom (Each)

Type of WorkLightMediumHeavy
HackingSGD$100 – $500SGD$500 – $1,000SGD$1,000 – $7,000
MasonrySGD200 – $1,500SGD1,500 – $6,000SGD$6,000 – $18,000
CarpentrySGD$200 – $1,400SGD$1,400 – $2,000SGD$2,000 – $9,000
PlumbingSGD$100 – $400SGD$400 – $800SGD$800 – $4,000

Additional Costs

Type of WorkLightMediumHeavy
Electrical WiringSGD$300 – $1,700SGD$1,700 – $3,000SGD$3,000 – $8,000
PaintingSGD200 – $1,500SGD1,500 – $2,000SGD$2,000 – $4,000
Windows & DoorsSGD$400 – $2,600SGD$2,600 – $5,000SGD$5,000 – $14,000
DisposalSGD$300 – $1,100SGD$1,100 – $1,800SGD$1,800 – $14,000

Finishes and materials that affect your costs

As you can see, renovation work such as hacking, masonry and carpentry has already taken up a considerable part of your renovation bill. However, that’s not all. An equally important factor to take into consideration is the type of finishing or material for your walls, floors, ceiling and other surfaces like kitchen countertops and cabinets.

Wall and floor finishes include plastering, coating, painting and tiling. In bathrooms and kitchens, waterproofing is needed to seal the floor and walls.

The types of floor, wall tiles and countertops can vary the renovation costs so these materials need to be factored into your budget. Here’s a list of common flooring and countertop materials and their prevailing cost price in year 2020.

Flooring MaterialsCost
VinylSGD$5.50 – $6.50 psf
LaminateSGD$6.00 – $8.00 psf
Ceramic tilesSGD$10.00 – $12.00 psf including labour
Polished cement screedSGD$15.00 – $30.00 psf
HardwoodSGD$30.00 – $50.00 psf
MarbleSGD$40.00 – $70.00 psf
Countertop MaterialsCost
LaminateSGD$8.00 – $20.00 per foot run
Solid surfaceSGD$55.00 – $70.00 per foot run
WoodSGD$20.00 – $150.00 per foot run
Ceramic tilesSGD$30.00 – $80.00 per foot run
GraniteSGD$55.00 – $175.00 per foot run
Stainless steelSGD$80.00 – $125.00 per foot run
Engineered quartzSGD$90.00 – $105.00 per foot run

Lastly, you should take note of furniture and electrical appliances too. They are not technically renovation costs and thus are not considered in this article, but we like to add a friendly reminder that these items will eventually increase your overall costs and should be budgeted accordingly. Afterall, the house will not be completely liveable without including these necessary furnishing and equipment.

Now that you have a glimpse of the renovation costs for your home renovation, discuss with an experienced interior designer how to turn your dream into a reality. With such high costs involved, professional help can do wonders in making sure your project is on track.

Winstudio offers a non-obligatory discussion on all matters regarding interior design and renovation. With 20 years of experience in architecture and interior renovation, your dream home is in good hands.

Use this link to contact us today!