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Resale Home Renovations: The Dos and Don’ts You Need to Know About Before You Begin Reno Works

With more new Singaporean homeowners buying resale flats, it’s probably timely to talk about the dos and don’ts when it comes to resale home renovations.

Why is there a need to distinguish resale home renovations from BTO renovations you may ask? Well, the reason is simple. 

BTOs are blanks slates that you are building up from scratch. In contrast, resale homes come in varying conditions depending on how old it is and what condition the previous homeowner left it in – hence usually requiring extra work to get it to your ideal state.

Because of that, resale home renovations tend to cost more than BTO renovations. Starting to worry about your renovation budget now? 

Well, that’s why the team at Redbrick Homes has put together this handy list of dos and don’ts to help new resale homeowners focus on the essentials and do away with unnecessary costs.

The Must-Dos for Resale Home Renovations

Due to inevitable wear and tear over the years, if your resale flat is more than 10 years old or looks to be in bad condition, it’s better to get all these done before you face any problems further down the road.

Replace Wall Tiles and Flooring 

After years of living in a house, it is inevitable that walls start to feel grimy to the touch, sometimes even moldy if humidity conditions are too high. Similarly, flooring could get scratched or damaged over time (which of you have not dropped something heavy and chipped the floor before?), or worse, the waterproofing could wear out.

If these don’t sound like conditions you are willing to accept in your new home, then make sure to plan for a sufficient budget to replace your wall tiles and flooring.

Trust us, don’t leave the bad conditions to fester, else you will have to deal with a lot more problems after you move in.

Interior Design Firm: Elements ID

Replace Sanitary Wares

Another significant product of wear and tear is your sanitary wares. From sinks, taps, showerheads to toilet bowls, these are probably features that have extremely high usage in a day compared to other parts of the home.

As such, they tend to be in worst conditions than most parts of the home. Don’t like the idea of using grimy, rusting, or leaking second-hand sanitary ware? Well, it’s probably smart to replace them from the get-go.

Interior Design Firm: D'Werks

Repair Spalling Concrete

A common issue with older HDB buildings, spalling concrete (where the ceiling cracks and falls off in pieces) is a natural and unavoidable process. 

If your resale home has this problem, make sure you inform your contractor to take steps to repair it immediately to avoid it spreading and causing any potential building integrity issues. Don’t wait until any loose bits start falling and cause injury to your household members. Sounds serious? It is!

Don’t see any signs of spalling yet? Make sure to take the opportunity during the renovation to have your contractor check the ceiling for holes and cracks and make sure to seal them up as a preventive measure.

Interior Design Firm: Innovate Interior Design

Inspect Electrical Wiring & Rewire If Necessary

Like everything in a home, electrical wiring wears out over time, and especially with constant use.

Want to avoid potential power trips, and any other troublesome and potentially dangerous electrical problems? Make sure to engage a professional electrician to check the state of the existing wiring and advise if they need to be replaced.

Also, you could take the opportunity to incorporate any new power points in the home.

While electrical costs tend to also be on the high side, it is definitely something that shouldn’t be skimped on if you want peace of mind.

The Don’ts for Resale Home Renovations

While it may be tempting to want to do everything in a renovation, do note that some are “good to haves” which you may want to leave out if there is no budget left for them.


Avoid Hacking Down Walls

Hacking down walls to create an open layout may sound great, that is until you see the cost for that. 

The solution? If having an open layout is important, try to select a resale flat that has a similar layout that you would like instead of using renovation works to correct that.

Drawbacks of Open Concept Living Rooms

When it comes to open concept living rooms, while there are a lot more advantages than disadvantages, there are some drawbacks that you might want to consider:

  • Less privacy in common areas – but one can easily retreat to your private rooms for that
  • Smells travel easily across adjacent spaces – this might not be that much of a concern if you do not plan to cook often 
  • Can appear cluttered if not cleaned up after – might not be a significant concern if you have sufficient storage space to keep clutter out of sight

Avoid Built-in Carpentry

While the idea of having lots of storage is tempting, built-in carpentry can add up to a princely sum due to the manpower and fittings required to install it.

Furthermore, if you are looking to create a more flexible space that could be changed up as your household needs changes, freestanding storage options offer a lot more possibilities for the future.

Avoid Expensive Materials

If this is your first home and you aren’t sure that you will be planning to stay for long, don’t splash out on the expensive materials.

Instead, there are plenty of cost-friendly options that are great alternatives for luxurious looking materials:

  • Marble surfaces (opt for marble laminates instead)
  • Hardwood flooring (opt for wood tiles or vinyl instead)
  • Stone feature walls (opt for wrapping solutions instead)

Avoid Skimping Out on Quality for Price

If the quote for your resale home renovation sounds too good to be true it probably is. 

Professional interior designers know the amount of effort and work to ensure a resale flat is refreshed to a new slate as your new home and will quote accordingly.

Do you want a vendor skimping out on workmanship and quality materials for a cheaper budget? We don’t think so.

Looking for A Trusted ID to Guide You in Your Resale Home Renovations?

Now that you are all schooled on the dos and don’ts of resale home renovations, the next step is to find a trusted interior designer that can help you along your journey.

Tired of asking around for referrals and searching online? Why not head over to Redbrick Homes and use our special algorithm IDMate, to help match you with an ideal interior design firm at the click of a button!

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