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Malaysia Renovation Cost: How Much Should You Set Aside For Your Renovation in Malaysia?

With rising living cost and the downfall of Malaysia economic, renovating your home may seem like a pipe dream for average Malaysians today. When we finally save our first RM100,000 after years or even decades, can we be so sure that the costs would remain the same.

On one hand, renovating your home is like designing your dream space. On the other hand, it is also being realistic and practical. Would you be able to afford the gorgeous idea of renovating your house?

How much budget you should put aside for your house renovation is solely based on the size and type of property you own. The get an approximate idea of what your renovation cost should be, consider the value of your house as a whole. You should probably spend no more than 15%-20% of your home value on the renovation cost.

For instance, if your house is worth RM300,000, the maximum you should spend on the renovation is RM45,000 – RM60,000. Also, you should set aside another 20% for any unexpected expenses which happen frequently. By setting aside extra funds, you know you will have the funds to finish your project no matter what happens.

Decide on your renovation needs and priorities and the scope of your project

The main reason why you want to renovate your home is probably to fulfill the needs that aren’t being met by your current living situation. Sometimes, it is the urge to renovate so that we can upgrade our living standard.

Whatever the reasons are, be sure to write down your renovation needs and priorities so that you don’t go off track spending on unnecessary things. Always remember your priority to avoid getting side-tracked with smaller upgrades which can wait for later.

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Obtain quotes from multiple contractors ( At least three )

If you are planning to hire contractor, we recommend that you get quotes from at least three different contractors and compare the pricing as well as the quality of work. Be aware that some contractors might give you a “too good to be true” estimate on the budget because they might end up cost more on the hidden charges.

The best option is to ask family, friends, and neighbors for their recommendations. When getting quotes, make sure you provide the contractor as much detailed information as possible and make sure that the total cost of the job includes materials, appliances, workmanship, permits, and supplies. Ideally, the information you provide to the contractors is so specific that the only differences is the labor costs.

Once you have confirmed your contractor, ask them to check on your project plan and renovation budget to see if there are any hidden costs that they may have overlooked.

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Prepare a Rainy Day Fund

Even a well-planned project is no match for the unexpected. We must always keep a rainy day fund because there is always the possibility that we will run into an unforeseen situation. You might discover a leak in your bathroom without your knowledge.

Whatever the case may be, it is best to prepare extra funds (20% of the budget) to handle speed bumps like these.

Consider Money-Saving Hacks

Look for small ways to save money if possible. You can save money along the way with small adjustments that can add up into big savings. Instead of purchasing everything brand-new, why not pick up used furniture or refurbished items when possible. This can hugely reduce your spend on appliances and finishes.

Having said, you probably should consider doing some renovation work yourself or DIY as much as possible to save more money on renovation. DIY painting is an easy way to knock a few hundred ringgit off your budget.

Flooring Budget

Flooring is an utmost essential in every home. It can take up a large chunk in one’s renovation cost. Consider different types of materials or finish to suit your budget.

Do not forget that the labor cost needed to set a foundation on the tiles. An average cost for flooring can cost up to a couple thousand of Malaysia Ringgit.

Let’s take a look at the estimated price for different flooring materials:

  • Vinyl: RM4.5 – RM12 per square feet
  • Carpet: RM4.5 – RM15 per square feet
  • Plastic: RM4.5 – RM15 per square feet
  • Parquet: RM10 – RM30 per square feet
  • Tiles: RM9 – RM60 per square feet
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Plumbing Budget

Another must-have in every renovation is a proper sanitary fitting to fuel water to various parts of your home such as your kitchen, bathrooms, laundry, and or outdoor spaces.

Let’s take a look at the estimated price for different plumbing accessories:

  • Faucet/Bidet: Around RM150
  • Washing Basin: Around RM150
  • Water Heater: Around RM250
  • Sink and Tap: Around RM300
  • Toilet Bowl: Around RM400

Electrical Budget

This is another crucial renovation budget that everyone must look into. Just because it’s hidden behind your walls, doesn’t mean it isn’t there. We should set a sum for electrical wiring which includes power, lighting and cable points. For kitchen, an estimated budget of RM 6000 is needed.

Let’s take a look at the estimated price for each type of electrical work:

  • Power Point (Single): RM70 – RM100
  • Lighting Point: RM40 – RM90
  • Telephone Point: RM100 – RM120
  • Two-Way Switch: About RM180

Take Note: Normally, most renovation could end up costing more than the original plan. Thus, be sure to keep extra funds aside in case of emergencies. This is especially true when you need to tear down walls, wiring issues, or water damage. However, do not compromise for the lowest quote because the quality of workmanship may cost more in the future.

Disclaimer: Costs listed are estimates from various sources and may differ depending on the brand, quality, and type of work required.

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