Cost Guide to Renovating Your Home in Singapore

To aspiring homeowners, home-related expenditure is usually the biggest expense we will incur in our lives.


While buying the property itself typically represents the bulk of our expenses, home improvement projects such as interior design and renovation, or home maintenance works, like hiring a handyman, can also amount to a significant spending. If this wasn't enough, the different quotations given by the companies you enquire from may differ vastly as well. And often, home owners are unknowingly over-charged.


We have come up with this cost guide that can help you gauge the expenses you may need to prepare for, when you engage in your next home improvement project.



Interior design

The cost for a project can vary widely, from the type of materials used, brands of finishes chosen, to the designs created by renowned interior designers. You should consider the following factors when hiring an interior designer:

  • Area of home project
  • Self-employed or firm
  • Overhead cost of firm (E.g. Number of employees, Office space rental, Firm’s advertising strategy, etc.)
  • Quality selection of materials


In general, interior designers and decorators that work for themselves are often more affordable. Larger firms are likely to charge more due to having higher overhead costs (such as marketing, bigger office spaces, etc), costs which are passed on to the consumer. While there are exceptions, this usually holds true for the industry.


For interior design packages, the usual price range in Singapore for the specific projects are:


3-room BTO renovation: S$20,000 to S$70,000

4-room BTO renovation: S$30,000 to S$80,000

5-room BTO renovation: S$35,000 to S$100,000

Condominium renovation: S$20,000 to S$150,000


Things to Ask Your Interior Designer 

Hiring a designer is not just simply comparing quotations. The designer’s taste and style should be able to match yours as well. Below are a few questions you can ask to determine if the interior designer is for you: 

  • How long have you been in the ID industry?
  • Do you have a preferred design style? Can I view your portfolio?
  • What is your philosophy when it comes to designing?
  • How will the billings be handled?
  • Do you have connections that can get me the materials on discounts?
  • What is your signature style?


Questions Your Designer Should Ask

Communication goes both ways. Your interior designer should also ask you specific questions to make sure you both are on the same page. You should be concerned if they will be able to match up to your desired vision, if they do not ask you any questions.


Questions they should ask include:

  • Do you have any preferred theme or style? - Scandinavian, minimalist or modern? 
  • What inspired you to choose this specific style?
  • Have you seen any home designs that you like in particular?
  • What is your favourite colour?
  • What is your budget?
  • What is the time frame for completion?



Renovation works

When the dust settles and the design is confirmed, the renovation works begin. Below are some of the major factors which are a big part of the renovation costs that you should take note of:


  • Carpentry

Due to the different dimensions of homes, most of our homes require custom-made furniture. Carpentry is therefore an integral part of a home renovation. Its costs will depend on how much custom furniture you actually require, as well as the brand of finishes used, for say, the laminate, hinges and drawer tracks, etc.


  • Flooring

The more common flooring materials include ceramic, laminate, vinyl, parquet, granite and marble. Flooring is a major part of any home and is a significant cost for most home renovation.


  • Hacking of walls

Depending on how much you want to change from the original design, hacking of walls can constitute a big part of your home improvement project too, especially if they require approval from relevant building/government authorities.


  • Air-conditioning systems

Air-conditioning systems aren’t cheap. Wiring, running of pipes and installing air-conditioning units for the entire home can easily cost thousands of dollars and should be factored into your renovation budget.



Handyman and other related expenses

On top of these, the below trades are also required for the maintenance and repair of your home:

  • Plumbers
  • Electricians
  • Painters
  • Movers


Renovating a home is not easy due to the many cost factors involved. When it comes to hiring the right professionals for your home improvement project, be sure to talk to at least 2-3 companies for each project to make sure they fit your style, character as well as budget.


Happy renovating!





Article by SGHomeNeeds

SGHomeNeeds is a home improvement platform in Singapore that allows you to find reliable home services companies in Singapore. SGHomeNeeds offers you the choice of comparing quotations and workmanship before you embark on your home improvement project, and is entirely free for homeowners. Use SGHomeNeeds for your home improvement project today!