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5 Must-Know Facts About Renovating a Home in Singapore

We give the lowdown on renovation costs and more.

We may be well aware Singapore’s steep property prices, but when it comes to renovating a home, what do we really need to know before we kickstart our journey?

Well, you can skip the guesswork. These are the facts you need to know about renovating a home in the current climate.

Fact #1: An Average Renovation Costs Around $40,000

Average Renovation Cost and Timeline for Homes in Singapore
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Don’t be lured in by low prices; A quality renovation should cover every aspect (including plumbing, flooring and carpentry, excluding furnishing and appliances), this is the ballpark figure you should be looking at.

Q Bay Residences by Habit
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How does it all add up? Things like your electrical wiring can cost upwards of a thousand. Likewise, basic, must-do works like flooring and painting could both easily add up to a five-digit figure too – and that's without factoring in additional costs or hiccups along the way.

Psst: For a detailed breakdown of costs, try out our Renovation Calculator.

Fact #2: Resales Can Cost Almost Twice As Much To Renovate

Average Renovation Cost and Timeline for Homes in Singapore
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Buying a resale flat? You’ll be getting a bigger space, but there’s a trade-off budget-wise. Be prepared to fork out more cash – almost twice as more for condominium units, as compared to newer developments.

Bukit Batok East Avenue 5 by Stylemyspace
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In all fairness, new homes usually come with brand new fittings, like flooring, kitchen and bath accessories which lowers renovation prices. However, resale properties often require a ton of maintenance work, such as re-wiring, demolishing old structures and rebuilding new built-ins. More time and effort definitely equates to higher costs.

Fact #3: A Renovation Takes 8 Weeks To Complete

Average Renovation Cost and Timeline for Homes in Singapore
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Home makeover shows on TV do make it look oh-so-easy, but the reality is that renovations often take way longer than that.

Remember not to rush things because workmanship could be compromised! Delays are common, so it is important to have a timeline to keep track of your progress. Once again, note that resale units usually take longer to renovate than new units. So, do arrange an alternate place to crash in case things are not completed on time!

Kim Tian Road by Versaform
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The COVID-19 situation has also impacted the renovation industry as we see labour shortage and delays in material imports. We expect to see a longer renovation duration in 2021.

Fact #4: Singaporeans Love the Contemporary Look

Average Renovation Cost and Timeline for Homes in Singapore
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Three years ago, the Scandinavian Minimalist look was trending among Singapore homes – think “white”, “clean” and “wood” interiors. Today, homeowners are steering away from the clean aesthetic. We're seeing colours (and character!) - from shades of pink to black, and popular features such as arched walls built in homes.

Tampines Street 61 by The Local INN.terior 新家室
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Matilda Edge by Adroit ID
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Tampines North Drive 1 by Third Avenue Studio
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(Psst: Not sure which interior style best describes your tastes or personality? Click here for our style checklist.)

Fact #5: Certain Renovation Works Are More Expensive Than Others

Average Renovation Cost and Timeline for Homes in Singapore
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Renovating a home in Singapore doesn’t come cheap and the trick to staying within your renovation budget is to understand the works required and what you are paying for.

Amongst the renovation works in a quote, the priciest components are carpentry, masonry (flooring, tiling and wet works) and hacking.

Eng Kong Road by
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Depending on how extensive the works are (labour fee), area size, and at times, choice of your material, the cost of these works can go up to more than $20,000, based on our Renovation Calculator!

That being said, we encourage you to speak with at least 3 interior professionals as they will be able to advise workaround solutions and provide budget-friendly alternatives to help you achieve the look you’re going for.

Click here to try out our free recommendation service - we will shortlist 5 suitable interior firms tailored to your renovation needs.

Note: Data presented are derived from the projects received as of November 2020.

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