Full Gut Home Renovations: Are They Worth the Money?

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Whether your home is very old and in desperate need of a makeover, you just bought a fixer-upper, or you need to accommodate a growing family, you may be considering a whole-house renovation or full-gut home renovation. They sound like a big deal, and that’s because they are. They take a lot of time, money and resources to achieve, leading many people to wonder: should I just move to a new home? Or should I bite the bullet and completely gut my house to start over?

The first step is to consult with an experienced Boston general contractor you can trust to get advice on your unique requirements, needs, plans and budget. Deciding on a full home remodel is a highly personal decision. What may be good for one family may not be for another. Let’s go over the pros and cons.

Typical Cost of a Complete Home Renovation

First, you can’t ignore the costs. How much you have in your budget will dictate whether you go through with a full gut renovation or not. Another big factor will be whether you have the patience or the time to be displaced for up to a year while the project is going on. But more on that later.

For now, the bottom line:

  • Low ($25,000 to $45,000): According to Realtor.com, this is what a small remodel including interior and exterior painting, small repairs (such as refinishing cabinets) and new landscaping would cost you. Keep in mind, these are national averages.
  • Medium ($46,000 to $75,000): This is what a more involved remodel would cost, including the low-cost upgrades listed above, as well as a total kitchen remodel and minor bathroom remodel.
  • High ($76,000 and up): This is what a high end remodel would cost you, including the cost of the above low- to medium-cost upgrades, plus repairing any foundation issues, and roof and sewer line problems.
  • Total gut to the studs and remodel: This will cost you between $100,000 and $200,000, according to HomeGuide. Whole house renovations, in general, cost $15 to $60 per square foot by national average, but if you were to only remodel a kitchen or bathroom, this will run $100 to $250 per square foot.

Now, keep in mind, these are not set costs. They can and will go up depending on any structural changes that are made to the layout or any unforeseen damage uncovered during the gut job. You never know if builders find black mold behind the walls, or termites in the basement, or critical foundational issues. All of these will add significantly to the overall cost. Always pads your budget to account for these unexpected items.

Home Restorations in Boston

Just like everything else in Boston, from food to the cost of living, it costs more to remodel a home here than it does elsewhere. The cost for a gut renovation in Boston in 2020 starts at about $100 per square foot. Here are some more stats:

  • Low-end kitchen remodel: $15,000$30,000
  • Mid-range kitchen remodel: $70,000$80,000 or $400 per square foot
  • High-end kitchen remodel: $140,000$155,000 or $775 psf
  • Low-end bathroom remodel: $15,000$18,000
  • Mid-range bathroom remodel: $27,000, or $770 psf
  • High-end master bathroom remodel and re-configuration: $50,000to $82,000, or $820 psf
  • Basement: $25,000 to $88,000, $137 psf

Now, on top of all that, you have to consider the cost of building permits. For example, for the City of Boston, permits for a major home remodel start at $50, increasing by $10 for every $1,000, with additional charges for electrical and plumbing work.

Time Factors

The typical major home restoration takes between three and 12 months to complete, depending on how large the residence is. For much of that time, you may not actually be able to live in the dwelling. You have to make sure you have an alternative place to stay, whether with family, a hotel or somewhere else.

Now to answer the question: is it worth it?

This is a subjective question with answers that will vary by family. If this will be your forever home, you at least plan to stay there for the next five years or more, and the renovation will bring you happiness and comfort, then we say go for it. If you are doing the renovations for resale value and plan to sell soon, it’s not worth your time or money.

Still not sure? A key step in the process is to find the best contractor for gut renovations in the Boston area. You can get highly qualified advice on whether a full gut renovation will be worth it for you and your family. Start with us here at AD Construction!

General Contractor – AD Construction Boston, MA

To learn more about full gut whole-house renovations or other alternatives to home improvement that can save you time and money, call us at 877-345-BUILD (2845) or fill out our online form for a free quote on your project. Our experienced contractors come highly recommended, and can handle any type of home renovation you need.

Located in the South End, building and renovating Boston, Back Bay, Beacon Hill, Dorchester, Cambridge, Brookline, Newton, MA area since 1988

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