by Domain Property Agents, March 13, 2017

Turn on the TV anywhere in Australia and there’s a fairly high chance you’ll come across a renovation show. Programs like The Block, House Rules or Reno Rumble are hogging the airwaves, feeding our obsession with real estate makeovers and giving hope to DIYers across the country.

But are they feeding us false hope, can you really renovate for profit? The simple answer is yes. The more accurate response is, yes, but with a strategy.

Here are some of the things to consider before you embark on your next home renovation: 



If you're planning to renovate, the first thing you'll need to do is set a budget, and then second things is to stick to it!

For people looking to improve their current property, budgets depend on how much you want to spend. It's a different story for investors, your renovation budget needs to include the cost of the property, stamp duty, capital gains tax, renovation costs, agents fees and advertising costs.

It's also important to make sure you aren’t over-investing in your house or unit, which is another reason to do the numbers before you start.  



On The Block a renovation that could easily take a year to complete happens in just 10 weeks. And while this makes great TV, it can set unrealistic expectations for DIYers. The reality is that a standard bathroom renovation usually takes 6-8 weeks, with a team of workers dedicated to the project, not two people.

Television shows regularly turn month, or even, year-long builds into weekend projects -- a reality than many DIYers forget but if you can consult with experts before the build, you can set more realistic timeframes and budget accordingly.  


Remember the buyer

If there's one thing you can learn from TV, it's to remember the buyer. When you’re renovating for profit, it's important to think about your audience in mind. Some things are common sense, for example, don't put a single studio apartment on a block where people want 3 bedroom houses and room for the kids to play. 

Other things, such as taste, are more complicated. As a simple rule, try to lean towards neutrals and leave bold colours or individual design for your own home. Make sure to research the demographics of the area your property is located in and try to cater to your market.


If you're unsure about what type of property people may want, you can always consult your agent for insights into potential buyers and their must-have features in a property, it’ll save you money and give you a better idea of the final sale price.