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How To Budget for a Home Renovation

Renovating your home can be daunting, often leaving you unmotivated to begin the planning process. However, even though the peak may look far from the bottom of the mountain, with careful planning and good execution, the climb can be less frightening and more achievable.

Are you looking to renovate your home soon? If so, here’s what you need to know when budgeting for your home renovation in Toronto.


Needs, Wants & Nice-to-Haves

When budgeting for your home renovation, it’s crucial to start by creating a list of your needs, wants, and nice-to-haves. Identifying the most crucial aspects of your kitchen or bathroom renovation can help you determine the items you’re willing to spend on and where you can save down the line if your budget is tight.

When creating your list, consider the following:

  • Needs: Recognize all the key aspects of your space that made you think about renovating in the first place. Whether that’s your kitchen, family room, home office, or bathroom, include the most important feature you’d like to renovate that is non-negotiable.
  • Wants: Include all the items that your ideal space would require for you to be happy with the upgrade, which justifies you spending your hard-earned money. Include all the changes you’d like that will improve your quality of life and allow you to enjoy the space.
  • Nice-to-Haves: Create a list of the features, materials, and functions you desire from the renovated space. No matter how far-fetched or creative, creating this list is important, as some of the items might be easier to implement than you think and could be included in the final scope without breaking the bank.

Assigning Dollar ValuesHands holding material swatches over a table covered in remodeling tools.

Before you start calling contractors for pricing, we strongly encourage you to attach a dollar value to each line item in each category you create. These numbers may not be entirely accurate market value prices, but this will allow you to realize your expectations.

You may have no idea how much a kitchen renovation would cost, but by allocating a price to an item before you do your research, you can see how much value this project holds for you.


Great! Now that you have your list and some preliminary guesstimates, you can start researching. There are tons of resources online, either searching through Google, YouTube, or even more recently, TikTok. However, this influx of information can get overwhelming, and not all resources are accurate.

Some resources might be from trustworthy sources but perhaps be outdated or not relevant to your specific area, and sorting all this information could be tedious but rewarding as you educate yourself and gain knowledge on the matter.

Happy couple using laptop togther; researching various home renovation costs and ideas.Outside of the online world, you can always ask your family and friends for their advice, as some of them may have done similar renovations in the past and might have some insight to share.

It’s also essential to consider at this stage if you’ll be moving to a new home in the future or renovating your space to become your forever home. If the latter is the case, you may spend a little more to complete your wish list. If you’re planning to sell your home, make sure to consider the house value and the return on your investment.

The partner you choose to carry out your renovation should be able to guide you and advise you along the way to see what’s worth it and what isn’t. In the next section, we’ll dive into the different types of renovators.

Choosing the Right Partner

When budgeting for your home renovation project, choosing the right partner will greatly impact your bottom line. Different companies operate in different ways, so you need to choose a partner that mirrors your values and puts your satisfaction first.

Different Types of Renovators

There are three primary types of renovators you can hire, including handymen, contractors, and design-build firms. All three will present you with different pricing for your home renovation, but it’s important to note the difference in each and what they offer.


This first category will be the most cost-effective. Handymen are often one-person crews who can do one or a handful of small projects at a time and are, well, handy! They’re often Jacks of all trades or have one specialization and offer a complete service at a reasonable price to attract clients who aren’t looking to spend a lot.


Contractors, on the other hand, are usually more established companies who specialize in providing material, labor, or both, to perform a service or complete a job. They’ll often have a bigger crew that includes different specialized trades. Some contractors will charge a management fee to take care of the project management aspect of the renovation.

In contrast, others prefer to follow an established plan drawn up by a designer, architectural technologist, engineer, or even an architect. The latter will reduce the liability contractors take on and sometimes open a can of worms as they’ll ignore their responsibilities, causing stress for homeowners and sometimes resulting in news articles negatively impacting the local renovators community.

Design-Build Firms

Design-build firms like Golden Bee Homes provide a one-stop shop solution where you’ll have a single point of contact throughout your renovation, from concept to completion, allowing you to have more control over cost and timeline.

With a single entity directly responsible for overseeing your entire project, you can get a more customized and tailored solution while avoiding problems down the line.

The process of a design-build model begins with designing with your budget in mind. This step will ensure the scope of your project is realistic and achievable, then transfer the project to the production team and hit the ground running.

Hiring a design-build firm to complete your home renovation means you’ll have everything you need from a single source, from the initial consultation to signing the final paperwork.

At Golden Bee Homes, we operate with a system we’ve been perfecting for years. We have created our Golden Process to put you in control of your renovation journey and provide an unparalleled experience by ensuring your peace of mind throughout.

Average Costs of Working With a Design-Build Firm

Here’s what you can expect in terms of budget when working with us or similar firms.

Renovated kitchen with white cabinets and an island.Kitchen Renovations

For your kitchen renovation, we’ll start by assessing your needs during our initial consultation. Once we have a good understanding of each other, we will prepare a design within your timeline and budget. For a complete kitchen renovation, you can expect your project to range between $40K to $80K on average.

Finally, your renovation will begin! With all the details of your kitchen renovation decided upfront, the production team can carry out their tasks efficiently, avoid unnecessary delays, and ensure they stay within your budget.

Renovated bathroom with double vanity and wood-grain cabinets.Bathroom Renovations

Our process for bathroom renovations begins similarly to kitchen renovations. After your initial consultation and once the design is approved, our crew will start building the bathroom of your dreams. Totally gutting and renovating a bathroom typically costs between $30k and $45k, though the price will vary depending on the size of the space and the materials you choose.

The type of bathroom also impacts the overall budget range, as a master suite bathroom renovation will vary significantly from a powder room face-lift. Keeping this in mind, contact us if you’d like to assess your space and discuss your interests and budget.


Home addition with large windows and sliding doors.Additions

Determining a budget range for home additions is more difficult, as this type of renovation depends on several factors. Commonly, the cost starts at around $250k. When budgeting for your home addition project, ask yourself if you should hire an architect or a design-build firm.

The advantage of the design-build model is having a single point of contact, as opposed to developing costly plans with an architect only to find out that the price associated with the build is higher than anticipated.

Architects commonly present customers with multiple potential builders who will then proceed to engage in a bidding war. While choosing the lowest bid is tempting, it often leads to disappointment as the contractor will likely not be able to complete your project at the agreed-upon price.

Why Choose Golden Bee Homes for Your Home Renovation?

Golden Bee Homes is the premier design-build firm in Toronto, with clients who rave about our work and have given us an average five-star rating on Google. With a passionate team of experts and years of building experience, we’re here to help at every step of your renovation while upholding our Golden Standard.

We pride ourselves on our promise to always share knowledge from our years of experience and advise you in making the best decision for you and your family, even if it means being brutally honest, by being upfront and transparent.

If you have questions when budgeting for your home renovation project in Toronto, call 416-495-8282 or contact us online to start a conversation.

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