How Much Does It Cost to Renovate a House in Canada?

Your property is in desperate need of a reno, but you don’t know where to start? You are not alone since a full-blown fix-up is an exciting but overwhelming process.

So, if you are wondering: how much does it cost to renovate a house in Canada and what are the factors affecting the cost of different renovation levels?

We’ve got all the answers below!

Factors Affecting House Renovation Costs in Canada?

Before you commit, let’s look at the main cost-driving factors of house renovations in Canada so you get a rough idea of how much your plans would set you back.

1. Type of House

Whether you’re looking to remodel, add a new room to your home, or make a few updates here and there, you must consider the unique requirements and constraints of your type of property when allocating a renovation budget.

The cost of renovating a detached single-family home will differ from that of a townhouse, condominium, or duplex—not only because of their different sizes and styles but also because each structure type poses different technical challenges.

2. Type of Renovation

Renovations can range from minor changes, such as removing the furniture and repainting, to major renovations, like tearing down walls and redoing the plumbing and electricity installations. Naturally, extensive work requires more money.

For example, if you’re only looking to change your walls’ colour or design, you can do it quickly and inexpensively with a bit of help from your friends and family. However, if you want to do a full kitchen remodel or add an extension, you will most likely have to visit your lender and apply for a personal loan that fits your circumstances.

3. Property Size

Needless to say, the size of the house is a major cost-dictating factor since larger properties require larger material quantities, detailed planning, and additional human labour, which significantly add to the overall renovation costs.

To illustrate the issue, an average-sized Canadian house is around 2,000 sq. ft.—enough space for any family to create a cozy home environment. However, such an area also requires considerable attention when making big changes or upgrades.

4. Age & Condition

Imagine renovating a 100-year-old house and then a relatively new structure. Different, right? Ancient buildings often hide very unwelcome surprises such as asbestos, lead pipes, ancient wiring, etc., which will require replacing and plunge you into debt.

On the other hand, modern houses most likely have up-to-date installations, which will allow you to keep the renovation costs down and focus on the details.

Therefore, before committing to a budget and starting work, thoroughly inspect your property to avoid financial pitfalls like outdated facilities and systems.

5. Choice of Materials

The quality and type of materials you choose for your home renovation project can significantly affect your overall expenses. For instance, if you opt for premium materials like natural stone or hardwood flooring, your expenses can quickly skyrocket.

So if you are looking to save some money, you should choose cost-effective options such as cheaper paint and laminate or engineered hardwood flooring.

In any case, weigh the advantages and drawbacks of each option relative to price, maintenance needs, and stylistic appeal before deciding on materials.

6. Time Constraints

While a thrilling prospect, home renovations can also prove stressful as they disrupt your day-to-day life. If the project takes longer to complete than expected, these interruptions will continue affecting your emotional and financial wellbeing.

However, expediting the process also requires more money as you have to pay for the extra labour hours, the express shipping fees, and all permit applications.

Therefore, the best approach is to take time to carefully plan your renovation project to ensure you meet your deadlines on time and at a reasonable cost.

7. Custom Additions

Everyone wants to add something unique to their homes, such as custom paint jobs, unique design elements, special-use rooms, etc. But, adding a personal touch to your new space is rather costly, especially if you are looking into purpose-built additions.

For instance, a built-in shelving unit for a home office comes with a unique polished finish, but it’s more expensive than stand-alone wholesale items.

Similarly, installing a bespoke fireplace introduces charm to any living room, but unless it bumps up your property’s value, you should reconsider adding it.

Average Cost of Home Renovation in Canada

While the total cost of your renovation project can vary greatly depending on all of the factors outlined above, we deduced the average cost of home renovations depending on the scale of the project for the average 2,000 sq. ft. Canadian house.

1. Low-Level Home Renovation

A low-level renovation can be an affordable way to experience big changes in your home! Imagine transforming a room with a fresh coat of paint and modern additions like smart home tech or a fancy new TV—something you can do without a loan!

Fixtures, carpets, and flooring are all great entry points into this type of renovation, as each offers options for personalization within a manageable budget.

If you are undertaking such a project for a 2,000-square-foot house, you can expect to pay between $15,000 to $40,000—depending on specific upgrades and materials you choose. You may have to hinder your creativity if you want to bring the cost down.

2. Mid-Level Home Renovation

If you were considering something more than the above, you could still carry out some amazing mid-scale renovations without breaking the bank too much.

For instance, if you are changing the cosmetics in your bathroom and/or kitchen, you can also think about remodelling them first: replace the flooring, upgrade the electrical or plumbing systems, and buy a new toilet, sink, and/or bathtub.

Mid-level renovations also have a much bigger impact on your property’s worth, so they are preferred by homeowners looking to sell the house afterwards.

That said, current estimates for such renovations for a 2,000-square-foot house hover around $40,000–$80,000 based on an average of $20 to $40 per square foot.

3. High-Level Home Renovation

Have you decided to splurge all your savings and a loan too for your property renovations with the hope of building your dream home or doubling its worth?

In that case, be prepared to spend a considerable amount of money and effort since high-level renovations include, but are not limited to, replacing the furniture, making structural repairs, changing the layout, adding central heating, hiring an interior designer, or even replacing the roof, and they all cost a pretty penny!

To top it all off and bump up the house value further, you can also use custom-built elements or luxury finishes—an appealing yet very costly option.

Depending on the extent of the work and the quality of materials used, such renovations can be quite costly in Canada: a complete overhaul of an average 2,000-square-foot house can easily range between $100,000 and $200,000 or even more.

Bottom Line

Renovating a home can be costly, especially if you do more than add a fresh coat of paint. Remember: several factors drive the price, including the property’s age, size, type, and current condition. That said, most of your money would go for labour costs, so if you are particularly handy, buy the necessary materials and carry out some of the renovations yourself. Doing so will ensure a much larger return on your investment!