Construction costs have been rising since the beginning of the year making it difficult for anyone embarking on a project to accurately budget. Before you start its worthwhile getting some advice. An architect, for example will advise clients where best to invest in their homes and will always endeavour to recommend ways to save money and keep the job within budget. You could also consult a contractor to get a guide price on what you are planning to do.

It’s very important that you are upfront about your budget. There is a misconception that telling an architect or builder how much you have to spend is a bad idea. This is absolutely not the case. Without knowing how much you have to spend it is impossible to advise you appropriately. Understanding what funds are available is vital as it will allow your architect to prioritise and steer you in the right direction in terms of where your money would be best spent and what, if any, compromises need to be made.

Typically you should budget €2,000 per square meter for new build works this includes extensions and between €850 and €1,200 per square meter for refurbishment works. These figures do not include things like windows, kitchens, bathroom fittings or finishes but do cover all construction works, electrical and plumbing works internal doors and the fitting of all finishes and sanitaryware.


For the items not covered in the contractors price it’s a good idea to get quotes from a number of different suppliers, the important thing here is to make sure that each company is working from the same brief  even the most subtle of differences can have a huge impact on the total cost. If everyone is quoting for the same kitchen you can compare the quotes exactly, which will ensure that you get the best deal.

Fees are another cost you will need to factor in. If you are planning on working with an architect speak to them about how their fee structure works. Is it percentage based or a fixed fee. A percentage based fee will mean that if the budget were to increase the fee would also increase so this is important to factor into your cost plan.

Aside from the architects fees you will also need to include fees for other consultants such as structural engineers, if you have had to get planning for the work that you are proposing there will be contributions to the council, these will vary depending on the works you are planning. If you need to move out while the works are going on will you need to rent? Or will you need to pay for storage costs?

Once you have a firm idea of what your budget is you will need to set aside at least 10% as a contingency for any unexpected extra costs. Building projects can often run up against problems that are impossible to predict from the outset.

Finally once your project is under way be careful about making changes or last minuet additions these will be things that the builder had not priced for and will add up quickly bring you over budget.

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