Renovating your home on the Central Coast

Renovating or enlarging your existing home often seems to make more sense than selling up and moving. After all, the money spent on stamp duty, moving fees and potential rent can be invested into your home. But there can be pitfalls.

Location is everything

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Location is always mentioned when it comes to purchasing property, whether it’s a family home or an investment property. However it’s not just about school zoning and nearby beaches. If you’ve found somewhere you love living, where the neighbours are great, or the garden is your passion or where the kids have established their life, the thought of leaving for a new, unknown location can seem daunting. So if the location is perfect but the house isn’t, it might be worth considering a reno.


As with all building, everything goes a lot smoother with thorough planning. Having said that, a reno can be an uncertain beast, and it really is important to have an experienced team on board with you.

Home owners often think a renovation will be simpler than a new build but it’s not always the case. It’s a great idea to get a builder in to discuss your ideas as early as possible to gauge what’s possible. The age of the home, and how well it’s been maintained, will have an impact on how much work needs doing. Often owners find that the house they intended to renovate turns into a knockdown once the scope of potential issues is highlighted.

Know what you’re dealing with

Many older homes on the Central Coast are simple fibro beach shacks. While these can seem an obvious candidate for renovation, there might not be much left by the time the asbestos is disposed of, the 60s wiring and plumbing is replaced, the rusty corrugated roofing is removed and the non-compliant later addition is knocked down. It might sound like a worse-case scenario but it’s worth having an expert team assess an existing structure before you go ahead with designs to ensure renovating isn’t a false economy.

Of course, you might still be keen to preserve your existing home, and that’s fine. Just be aware that it can add challenges for your building team. But at Brazier we will always discuss any concerns at the beginning. Having a thorough plan in place is the only way to move forward with any project with so many moving parts.

Dealing with an existing structure can also throw up unforeseen issues so, as with a new build, it’s imperative to have a contingency budget.

When it’s right

If your existing home provides a sound foundation renovating is a great way to get the home of your dreams. Working with an experienced designer can be a very rewarding experience – you’ll be amazed by how your home can be transformed. It’s also a great way to gauge the scope of the project and keep cost realistic. At Brazier we have amazing designers that we work with on a regular basis. Having an experienced team on a build is vital for a great result.

Stay or go?

Another consideration is where you live during renovations. Where possible we try to work around clients staying on-site for the duration. It can create some challenges but it saves you months of rental payments and is a great option for those who want to be more involved in the build. Of course it’s not an option that suits everyone and we’re just as happy to work on your home while you’re living comfortably off-site. Though we try to minimise the impact and to work as fast as possible to completion, a building site is a messy and noisy environment.