Renovation vs Remodel – What’s the Difference?

 In Home improvement


remodeling or renovation

Many people use the words renovation and remodeling to refer to the same thing. While both terms apply to improving something, there are distinctions in renovation vs remodel. The main difference refers to extent of this improvement. Merriam Webster gives us the following definitions for Renovate and Remodel:

Definition of remodel

transitive verb

1to alter the structure of REMAKE
2to cause (living tissue) to undergo structural reorganization, alteration, or renewal

Definition of renovate

transitive verb

1to restore to a former better state (as by cleaning, repairing, or rebuilding)
2to restore to life, vigor, or activity REVIVE
These definitions are similar, but let’s look at some of the differences. Remodel refers to changing the structure itself, whereas renovate refers to restoring to a former or better state. Applied to home improvement, this means that renovations are the improvement of an existing room or home. This could include things like cabinet resurfacing, countertop replacement, or repainting. Remodeling is changing the room altogether. Instead of just refinishing cabinets, this would mean replacing them completely. Instead of repainting walls, this could mean tearing them down and rebuilding them with a different layout. While both processes improve what came before, remodeling goes a step further than renovation.

Remodel vs Renovation, What’s Right for You?

renovation vs remodel

Now that you have a basic understanding of the difference between remodeling and renovation, you can begin to figure out what is right for you. Keep in mind, they are not mutually exclusive processes and often overlap in a home improvement project. If you need a place to start, ask yourself these questions.

Am I happy with the layout of my home?

When deciding between remodeling and renovation a great place to begin is considering how you feel about the layout. Do you feel like your kitchen is open enough? Would you like more space in your bathroom? Does your bedroom feel too small? Would you like more closest space? If your answer is yes, you need remodeling. If you are happy with the layout of your home but want a fresh look, renovations will do the trick. Changing the layout of a room means tearing out walls and rebuilding. Remodeling gives you maximum control over the outcome. Load-bearing walls are just about the only thing that can’t be completely transformed. Renovation uses your existing layout but makes the best of it.

What is my budget?

With any home improvement, budget is always a major consideration. There’s no point in planning and designing a remodel or renovation that you simply cannot afford. You don’t need an exact number, but you at least need some idea of how much you can afford to spend. By starting from this point, you can prioritize your needs and make the most important changes first. Another factor is the ROI (return on investment) on your renovation or remodel. One good thing about remodeling and renovation is that you almost always make up at least some portion of what you spend by adding value to your home. When it comes to maximizing your ROI, it is usually best to fix problems before upgrading. Renovation is usually less costly than remodeling. Since remodeling often involves demolition and reconstruction, it can be more time-consuming, labor-intensive, and require more materials than renovation. It is best to identify your biggest problems first, choose the ones that add the most value to your home, and check your budget. This will help you develop the best plan of action for your home improvement project.

How long do I plan to live here?

Another thing to consider is how long you plan on living in your home. If you are planning on staying there for a long time, the layout and living experience in your home are have a much greater impact as you must live with these changes. This means you might choose a project that may have less ROI but a bigger impact on your living experience. For instance, if you spend a lot of time in the kitchen it might be more worth it to you personally to remodel your kitchen rather than renovating the outdated guest bathroom that you never use. If you were planning on selling your home eventually, you might take care of the bathroom first if it’s in worse shape than the kitchen. When considering the return on investment, don’t underestimate the personal value added by your home improvement project as a factor in your decision making.


If you are looking for experts to help you with your remodel or renovation in Baton Rouge, LA, contact us at Archie Home Improvements. You can be sure you will get the results you are looking for, with quality workmanship and at a fair price.




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