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How Much Does It Cost To Renovate Your Condominium In Malaysia?

Renovating a condominium can cost you at least around RM20,000.

 

Renovation costs in Malaysia have increased over the years. In 2022, there has been over 20% increase in average price for raw materials that are used for renovation such as cement, steel, aluminium and bricks. The price for steel rose by 0.9% in March 2023 as compared to just a month before.  

Purchasing a home comes with a few inevitable renovation costs. Even if you bought a new condominium, it would require basic work such as installation of lights, kitchen cabinets, wardrobe and plumbing. Besides, occasional reworking might be needed to update or maintain a property throughout its lifecycle.   

A typical three-to-four-bedroom condominium in Malaysia measures about 650 sqft to 1,500 sqft. So, how much would it take to renovate a condominium? We explore the cost of renovating such homes, and the fees involved.

   

Renovation Differs Between A New Condominium And One That Others Had Lived In 

Basic Renovation Costs For A New Condominium  

When homeowners purchase a new condominium in Malaysia, the unit usually comes with basic furnishing like wall fixtures and tiles. It doesn’t however come with light fixtures, cabinets, wardrobe and furniture in most cases. So, homeowners will need to fork out money to have the basics installed. 

Types of renovation 

 

Area  Price  
Lighting 

 

Kitchen, Living room, Bedroom  RM500 
Bathroom  RM200 
Outdoor  RM300 
Cabinet installation  Kitchen  RM5,000 
Bathroom  RM600 

Wardrobe installation 

 

Bedroom  RM5,000 

Source 

In addition, more people are increasingly working from home. About 73% of Malaysians are looking to switch up their home situations while 38% are interested in enhancing certain areas of their home after the pandemic in 2021. Meanwhile, 84% of Malaysians opine that a home office is essential. This will mean increased costs to add that home office into your renovation.   

If you’re looking to have more extensive work done on your condominium whether it’s for your own stay or to rent out, it will require more complex and wet work that are going to cost more. Wet work involves anything dealing with water like the piping, plumbing and pumping. 

Extensive Renovation For A Condominium That Was Lived In 

When homeowners buy an aged property, it’s possible that major updates specifically on piping and wiring will be required. These are things homeowners don’t update frequently so they are left untouched for years. 

As shown below, updates and electrical wiring are the costliest kinds of renovation work, requiring an estimated cost of RM60,000 and above. Updating the wiring of the condominium requires expertise of technicians and is important to avoid short circuits that happen due to old wiring, which can lead to fire. It’s also vital to regularly check and maintain the residual current device that prevents fire by cutting off electricity automatically when there’s a fault.  

Residents in condominiums share a draining system which can complicate things compared to a landed property where homeowners have their own individual drainage system. 

Common plumbing problems encountered by residents in condominiums include leaking, damage of control valves that manage the flow of water to an individual unit and flooding due to corrosion of pipes which can affect your neighbours living on the level below you. 

Type of renovation 

 

Price 
Wet work, plaster ceiling, pipe system, small cabinet and small wardrobe 

 

RM20,000 to RM30,000 
Wet works such as knocking down walls, adding larger wardrobes and kitchen cabinets, and installing more design options such as laminate or vinyl flooring 

 

RM31,000 to RM60,000 
Electrical wiring, plumbing, toilets and upgrade other spaces in the house 

 

RM60,000 and above 

Source   

How To Reduce Renovation Costs? 

There are ways to minimise renovation costs, but homeowners will have to spare more time and effort in planning, sourcing and getting hands-on with the work.  

Doing-it-yourself: Firstly, homeowners can allocate their budget on more difficult work that require the skills of experts such as installing your wardrobe in the bedroom or tiling. They can then take on some simpler tasks such as installing your lights, fans, TV, and water heater which can save you up to thousands of ringgits altogether. 

However, if you do not have the skills to do so, you might want to ask experienced homeowners to give you a hand to avoid damaging your appliances or home and incurring further costs.  

Keep to a single contractor: There’s always a higher chance that you will get a lower quote if you consolidate your renovation with one contractor as opposed to getting multiple contractors to work on your house. You can go on platforms like recommend.my to check out a curated list of renovation contractors along with price guides and customer reviews.  

Source your own items: If you’re willing to put in the time and effort, you can go to factory outlets to shop for materials yourself. You can go to several places, compare prices and choose the cheaper one. For example, GM Klang is one of the biggest wholesale malls in Malaysia that offers home improvement materials and more.  

Choose durable materials: To save on renovation and maintenance in the long run, choose materials that are more resistant to wear-and-tear and that go with all times. Materials like marble and laminate (made of plastic) are known to be resistant to daily use while wood and ceramic tiles can be damaged if they come in contact with water or force. 

Depending on your needs, renovation can be as simple as installing some light fixtures to as extensive as redoing tiles or expanding space by breaking down walls. When you purchase a lived-in condominium, you will probably need to spend more to update the toilets, wiring and piping. If you want to save on renovation costs, you can try to keep to the original structure as much as possible and invest your money in more quality and durable materials.  

 

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