Remodeling vs. Building New

Before beginning any project, we like to sit down with you for extensive talks about your home design. These important conversations usually revolve around meeting family needs that are not being met in a current home.

As a homeowner, you are faced with an important question: should you remodel or build new?

An architect can help you determine the right decision for your needs. An architect can identify the benefits of remodeling your kitchen versus digging a basement on your new lot. We can take the following steps with you when deciding to renovate or build new:

1. Identify what needs work.
We love to list out possible options for updating your current home, as well as talk about added features we could incorporate in a new home. Homeowners should take a look at their current surroundings and make a clear list of what needs to be changed. Is your house simply out of style? Or are their problems such as proximity to work or yard size that have more complicated resolutions? The answers we can provide for your problems vary in scope and price, but knowing what needs to be resolved is the first step in creating the perfect home for you–redesigned or new.

2. Compare costs.
Experienced architects understand the different, and often times hidden, costs of remodeling vs. building a new home. General contractors, zoning requirements, wiring replacement and permit costs are just a few of the budget items we can help assess and control in any kind of design. We will help you in your comparison with different local contracting firms before you choose one you want to work with. Picking affordable materials, creating a sound timeline, and working with honest builders are all ways we can help you save money when building or remodeling.

3. Weigh inconveniences of remodeling vs. moving.
Depending on the project, remodels can leave you out of certain parts of your home for weeks or months, and buying new most likely means selling your current residence–both of which are stressful. We like to discuss what the best option is for your family. Consider the updates necessary in order to sell your current home; we are happy to design a pleasing update for any home looking to be sold. Also, consider the financing of your new home purchase: must you sell your current home in order to move? Will the selling price of your current home affect the design budget of your home? We can fit designs to meet your budget for renovating, buying new, or both.

Whatever you choose, we are happy to offer our professional opinion to help with your decision making. Creating a new living space is one of life’s most exciting experiences. As with any housing decision, you should weigh the financial ramifications along with the emotional costs of each option. With the right architect and the right design, your dream home can come to fruition.


The following photos are from a recent remodel of a home in the San Mateo, Calif. area.
Before photos are on the left, the finished product on the right: