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Renovating a Condo: 10 Important Things To Consider

Condo renovations are challenging. You need to be very organized and efficient with your design ideas. For the most part,  you have to  make the most of the limited space available with a functional layout. It is essential that you look over every driving factor and take it into consideration.

With a detailed plan, you can essentially remodel your condo without any hassle. Let’s go over some of our condo renovation tips that you should keep in mind before jumping into flipping your space.

1. Have a Clear Idea of the Rules

There are varied policies of the condo board for each developmental project. You have to make sure that you are not interfering with any of those relevant policies. The board may have some regulations that could possibly affect your design decisions down to the tiniest details (ie material selection). Mostly, the regulations will talk about which days and time you could actually work on renovating the condo.

It is better to stay on top of these things, so you don’t have to deal with the scheduling or delivery issues later on. Also, make sure that you have the required permit or signed approval before initiating any work.

It will be better if you could discuss your detailed plans with a knowledgeable board member before going ahead with anything. This will help to get your expectations straight up, and you could stay realistic about your design plans.

2. Know Who You Will Be Renovating For

friends in living room

After going over the detailed plans of what the condo board will allow you to do and not, you will have to know who you have to design the condo for.

This depends on several factors. Will you be renovating the entire condo space? Is the place going to be up for resale? Will it be rented out? Or is it just for your personal living space enjoyment and upgrade?

It is important that you figure out your top priority before you go ahead with anything.

If you are designing it for yourself, you would need to estimate how long it will take to finish the job. You can prioritize your work likewise with an estimated timeline that describes every design detail.

If you are renovating it to sell or rent out, then you have to consider the best investment opportunities. You need to focus on some key area while skimping through the unwanted details.

3. Figure out Your Limits

It is important that you know what your project limitations are. With most real estate and condo renovations, you have to be realistic about your design plans. There may be some distinct design and architectural structure plans which are too hard to implement, especially if you’re doing it yourself. You can hire an outside consultant to ensure that you are not expecting something that is not entirely possible to achieve.

For any real estate renovation, hiring a professional consultant and interior designer is essential especially if you’re planning to rent it out.

4. Don’t Move Around Your Fixtures

bathroomYou don’t want to spend a massive amount on setting up different locations for your fixtures to complete your living room or bathroom renovation. It will take a lot of time, effort, and money to do that. So, it is better to leave the toilet where it actually resides.

You can add or remove that second sink though. What you can possibly do is to make some design changes to the already available space. This will help move the eyes but not the actual fixtures.

There could be some beautiful elements to blend in and out with each other. You can make some unique and creative design decisions that will take your eyes to a particular item in the space. With a stunning or minimalistic design, you can achieve that easily.

5. Lower the Amount of Lighting

Most of the condos come with a cement ceiling, so there are fewer chances of drilling into them for more or better lighting fixtures. There are mostly overhead installations of the light switches and other ceiling related changes. This also includes the rerouting of the ventilation or even for using a new hood fan.

Depending on the type of fixture that you want, you will need a six to twelve-inch drop. There will be a noticeable change of the ceiling height at that particular spot, but you can definitely manage it by some unique design features.

6. Focus on Building up Instead of Tearing Things Down

condominium renovations

Condos include richly detailed moldings within them with a taste of elegance and traditional richness.

In order to get that kind of a look, you don’t have to really focus on breaking things down. The plain and simple way to achieve it is by focusing on the building up process.

For example, if you want to change your metal door, you don’t have to tear it down. Instead, you can think of a backband that could readily go with it.

This will just be another frame layer on top of it. Furthermore, it will definitely add to the luxurious feel if that’s what you’re aiming for. You can easily see the distinct effect of this design feature.

7. Try to Stay Flexible

It is better to stay flexible in terms of what your ideas and concepts are about the condo renovation project. If you are smart enough to consider the design changes, it will be easier to come to terms with the things that you can’t really achieve during the renovation phase. You can essentially make a trade-off and realize some priorities over anything else.

Focus on the things that stand on top-priority for you. For example, you can use a smaller space for your fridge so that you could indulge in some better and creative ideas for the leftover space. Things like this will help you get a clearer idea of what your priorities are and what you’re willing to compromise for them.

8. Don’t Shy Away from Painting


If you’re willing to rent out or sell the condo that you have, you may think of a paint job for the same. A dramatically dark paint job would sound terrifying to you, but you have to focus on what the requirements of the next owner would be.

You can choose an unusual paint that is overrated or paint with a decent hue that will be beneficial for your budget and efforts involved.

The entire condo renovation will eventually help you to resell in a proper manner. You should be thinking in terms of how it would feel for the next owner of the condo.

If you’re choosing the walls with the colors that you love, it will give you a chance to lower the design costs of some of the other renovation challenges as well.

Or you can choose some of the interior designers’ favorite colors like dusty blue, muted green, and apple red. [1]

Avoid constantly going in and out of the room where you’re painting to keep the paint from staining the areas you are not painting. Put all your materials in the same room so when you need any of the tools, you can just grab and go. Prepare two sets of materials for prepping and painting.

– Danny, Home Decorator at CondoLiving

9. Choose a Third Party to Work With

If you have a strict condo association, then it is better to hire some outside help. It will essentially help you to design the renovation as well. Furthermore, you will have a tradesperson that will deal with everything so you won’t have to worry about the hassles.[2]

They will deal with all the contractor duties and help to make the plan details functional. Moreover, there will be a timely arrival of the materials that you require on a proper trip. You can be assured that the whole process will be timed perfectly without any worries.

There won’t be any extra materials stacked up in unnecessary mannerisms. You won’t have to face any uncomfortable or inconvenience when it comes down to the arrival of the materials that you require. It is better to choose a single design firm to choose the materials as it will be helpful in dealing with the individual store and supplier.

Furthermore, you can be assured that they arrive all at the same time without any delay or further notices. You will have a smooth project overall to work without any hassles.

You can watch this timelapse video of a condo renovation. As you’ll see on the clip, there’s a team who worked together which made the whole process efficient.

10. Choose to Stay Somewhere Else During the Renovation

You can really live at the place of the condo while it is undergoing condo renovation. You can do the work before you actually move in or find a temporary space that you can reside in before the renovation project is done.

You can choose to stay at a friend’s or family’s place while the project is undergoing renovation. Essentially, you don’t have to deal with the extra hassles of moving things around unnecessarily.

Final Thoughts on Renovating a Condo

With a detailed plan, you can smooth out the entire real estate renovation plan easily. Keep yourself informed about all the rules and regulations of the condo board before going ahead with anything. If you want an effortlessly running project, it is better to have a detailed plan laid out in front of you.

Make sure you have all the aspects clearly thought about and planned for before you begin with any renovation activity. Renovating a condo is not that easy a task. It could be made simple by keeping in mind the above-mentioned criteria and situations.

Alternatively, you could skip the whole condo renovation process and get a real estate investment by purchasing a pre-construction condo that’s fully furnished and renovated. Visit Precondo for exclusive access to all the new and upcoming condos in Canada.




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