How much does it cost to renovate a house in New Zealand?

Whether the dream home you would like to buy – or have already bought – needs a new coat of paint, a kitchen makeover or a loft conversion, it's important to plan your budget and get an understanding of the expected costs.

Quaint, older house following extensive renovation
ARTICLE Stephanie Matheson

Renovations can be complex and often require many specialists including an architect and a master builder. What really helps to save time and hassle is having one point of contact, so consider finding a specialist design and build project management company in the early planning and budgeting stages.
One of our Refresh Renovations consultants says: “When the brief is  ‘we’d like to renovate, how much will it cost and what can we do?’, it’s possible to provide a broad indication of budget and advise on site coverage, height to boundary issues, design and council requirements and the myriad of areas that will need consideration.”
Remember that an early estimate is just a rough guideline based on a series of assumptions. Even when you get the actual building specification along with a proper quote, plan in a contingency budget of at least 15 per cent for unforeseen problems or extras. Other factors to consider are the timeline and whether you have to move out during the renovation. Major work typically requires a building consent from the council.
“The renovation process can seem overwhelming to a customer,” says the Refresh consultant.  “But a good builder with a solid team can provide the framework and expertise to make it a logical and rewarding experience.”
Read our estimates on areas to renovate below, or view a more detailed list in our home renovation project estimates section.
Diagram showing how much it costs to renovate variious parts of your home

Corrugated Iron Roof ~$14,000 (shown in diagram)

Plan in $12,000 to $14,000 to replace an average sized corrugated iron roof, similar in size to the one pictured. Other roof types will be more expensive.

Dormer Window ~$8,000 (shown in diagram)

Replacing a dormer window in an existing space is likely to cost between $8,000 and $9,000.

Ventilation System ~$5,000 (shown in diagram)

Prices for installing a ventilation system in the roof cavity start from just under $2,000. A reclaim heat exchange system with two intakes and two outlets is closer to $5,000.

Reclad Exterior of House ~$35,000 (shown in diagram)

The cost for recladding and insulating an existing villa (including new weatherboards and paint) could be between $30,000 and $35,000. Consider removing interior linings to install insulation instead.

Painting ~$10,000 (shown in diagram)

Painting the exterior of an average sized, single-storey house similar to the one pictured here will cost approximately $10,000.

Double-Glazing ~$10,000 (shown in diagram)

Put aside around $10,000 for double-glazing. Retrofitting is less invasive than total replacement, but the price can be similar. If joinery is to be replaced the costs may double.
Newly renovated bathroom with designer double sinks

Bathroom Renovation ~$25,000

A modern bathroom, such as the one pictured (by Heritage Tiles), is one of the key features that adds value to a house. To update a medium sized bathroom with mid-range products, plan on spending between $20,000 and $35,000. A more basic bathroom renovation in New Zealand is likely to cost in the region of $15,000 - $20,000. You can keep the costs down by not shifting the existing plumbing points. You can view more information on costs for basic bathroom renovation, mid range bathroom renovation and high end bathroom renovations in our project estimates section of the website.
Newly renovated kitchen with waterfall floating bench

Kitchen Renovation ~$35,000

Put around $25,000 to $35,000 aside to turn your kitchen into a practical and welcoming space. If you want to include higher end (more expensive) materials, you can limit expenditure by splurging on certain features such as cabinets only, and by not moving the location of your sink and stove. You can view more information on costs for basic kitchen renovation, mid range kitchen renovation and high end kitchen renovations in our project estimates section of the website.
Newly renovated loft room conversion

Loft Conversions $220,000

Loft conversions are a great way of extending your living space. Using the new steel framing system, allow approximately $200,000 to $450,000+. You can view more information about costs for a loft conversion in our project estimates section of the website.
Outdoor entertaining area with swimming pool

Swimming Pool $35,000

Prices for installing a swimming pool in your garden start from around $35,000 for an in-ground fibreglass pool (7.5 metres by 4 metres). You will have to spend closer to $55,000 for a concrete pool, and many additional costs need to be factored in including heating, covers, decking and landscaping.

*This pricing excludes permits, engineering, scaffolding and recommended wrapping. All cost estimates are provided by Refresh Renovations. Note that these are rough approximations only (based on an average sized house or villa and mid-range products), and neither Renovate magazine nor Refresh Renovations can be held accountable for their accuracy.

You might be interested in reading: Making the decision to renovate.

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This article by Stephanie Matheson featured in Issue 004 of Renovate Magazine. Renovate Magazine is an easy to use resource providing fresh inspiration and motivation at every turn of the page.


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*All information is believed to be true at time of publishing and is subject to change.

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