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How Long Does It Take To Remodel A Home

The time needed for remodeling your home depends on many factors like the size of the remodeling, your budget, the weather, and much more. You need to have a timeframe because delays and unnecessary project extensions cost money, time, and peace of mind. Here’s how you can keep your schedule on track.

Here’s an overview of what you will learn:

  1. Remodeling Type and Duration Estimates
  2. Home Remodeling Timeline: What goes into it?
  3. Tips to keep your schedules on track

Remodeling types and time duration estimates

A timeline estimate for your remodeling is best started by determining the size and scale of your project. The categories are small-scale, medium-scale, and large-scale.

Small-scale renovation project

You can do small-scale remodeling within a few days to about 2-3 months. These types of projects do not necessarily need contractors or licenses. These are examples of small-scale remodeling projects:

  • Cosmetic renovations, such as exterior and interior painting 
  • Minor repairs of plumbing and fixtures such as doors and windows, 
  • Fixture and appliance installations
  • Replacements where no significant structural repairs or changes will be done, such as changing wallpapers, kitchen tiles, floor carpets, and sinks. 

Cosmetic work means painting, installing appliances and fixtures, fixing wall and floor tiles, changing windows and doors, and replacing wallpaper and carpets.

Minor structural changes can be the construction of countertops, plumbing, roofing, and breaking down of walls that have no impact on your home’s basic foundation or main structure.

Medium-scale home renovation projects

Medium-scale projects can last from several weeks to about six months. Most remodeling works fall under this category. This category involves fully remodeling specific rooms, constructing extension rooms, and adding significant features such as a new fireplace or a fully-functioning kitchen island. 

This type of remodeling goes beyond the small-scale category but will not involve major structural repairs or replacements in your house. You may need a contractor for this type of project. Take advantage of free consultations to know your options. Examples of medium-scale remodeling include:

  • Adding a garage or a deck, 
  • Relocating a kitchen, 
  • Transforming your basement from a storage room to an entertainment center.

Large-scale home renovation

Large-scale remodeling lasts from about six months to over a year. Are you planning a major overhaul? This project category involves significant structural changes and repairs to your house. You will need a contractor and remodeling experts for this kind of remodeling. Examples include:

  • Replacing foundation materials due to neglect or damage caused by fire, flooding, earthquake, and other natural disasters.
  • Reworking the plumbing of your whole house.
  • Fully remodeling at least two rooms at the same time.
  • Remodeling parts of your house one at a time extends from six months to more than a year.

To sum up, there are three general remodeling types: 

  • Small-scale projects can last from a few days to about three months.
  • Medium-scale can be from several weeks to six months.
  • Large-scale remodeling lasts from six months to more than a year.

Familiarizing yourself with these categories will give you an excellent working knowledge of how long it may take to remodel a house. 

Next, let’s get into the details of what goes into these timelines.

Home Remodeling Timeline: What goes into it?

What goes into a remodeling timeline? Below are lists of things that happen and have to be done:

Your budget and the size of your remodeling project

The timeline for setting the budget and your desired project scope are in your hands at the beginning. Expect this to adjust frequently as you talk to suppliers and contractors. 

To streamline your estimated remodeling budget in as little time as possible, calculate it by getting at least three estimates from reputable contractors. Make sure that you get written estimates as required by the Home-Improvement Business Law. The written estimate should indicate clearly all the specifics of the project, including:

  • Materials and prices
  • Equipment and prices
  • Payment schedules
  • Work schedules

When to do it and for how long?

It is best to determine your budget, the size of the project, and timeline limits at the very beginning. If anything goes wrong such as hiring an incompetent contractor or having unexpected bad weather, you can decide early enough to save you from unnecessary delays. 

Unless you work on a strict deadline, such as the birth of a new baby that requires a new nursery or a damaged room needing immediate fixing, take your time to work on the budget, project size, and timelines.

Choosing people who will be involved in your renovation project

Choosing people whom you will involve in the project takes up considerable time. You will need to search for competent experts. Hire those who will work well with your lifestyle and help you get the most out of your time and budget. Investigate their track record and check out reviews. 

To help you with this process, the NYC Department of Consumer and Worker Protection (DCWP) advises you to:

  • Call 311 or visit the Search for a DCA Licensee page to:
    • Check if your home improvement contractor is licensed with DCWP.
    • Ask DCWP for the complaint history of contractors you are considering hiring.
    • Check with at least three credible and reputable references.
    • Also, verify complaints and track records with the surrounding counties of Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester, and also with the New York State Consumer Protection Board.

For Rockland County, verify your prospective contractor’s licenses and complaint history call Rockland County Consumer Affairs Department at 845-708-7600.

When to do it and for how long?

The larger your remodel, the more you need to consider hiring contractors to do your home remodel. Do this as soon as you can. Get recommendations from credible sources, such as those who have experienced the same type of house renovation project as you plan to have.

Designing, planning, and bidding

Suppose you plan a small-scale project such as minor repairs or a simple cosmetic update. In that case, you are not required to do lengthy, elaborate, government-approved designing, planning, and bidding. It is a different case for medium-scale and large-scale remodeling. You may need approvals, permits, and inspections before proceeding to construction.

When to do it and for how long?

Consult at least three remodeling experts for timelines on these phases. Designing, planning, and bidding by suppliers may take as many as six months. Ensure you see the originals of licenses, permits, and plans. Keep original or genuine copies with proper verification.

Preparation and construction phase

The preparation and construction phase takes up a significant part of your timeline. The time has come for the house remodel to get into full swing. All these should have been done:

  • Approvals, permits, and inspections. Ensure all approvals, permits, and inspections have been granted and given. Only proceed with construction if all requirements are met. 
  • Complete and thorough verification of suppliers and contractors. Check the licenses, complaints histories, and reviews of possible contractors.
  • Schedules of work crew and deliveries. Before construction, all schedules with people involved in all the construction phases should have been locked in, including order and delivery of materials with suppliers.

When to do it and for how long?

Work on all the requirements as soon as you can. Best to get a general contractor to ensure all city permits are secured and all requirements are up to code. If you do this on your own, expect that this may take about four to eight weeks.

Discovering issues that are not included in the plan

No matter how much careful planning you do for your remodeling process, there is always the possibility of discovering unforeseen problems. For example, you discover mold eating up a significant part of your ceiling while doing a drywall installation. Give contingencies in your construction schedules for unforeseen problems in your renovation process.

The weather

Most experienced home remodeling experts can work through all kinds of weather conditions. However, it is still wise to allow wiggle room in your schedules when problematic weather situations, such as extreme temperatures with dangerous levels of rain, sleet, snow, and hail, occur.

Checklist to keep your deadlines on track

To get your house remodeling project on track, here’s a checklist you can follow:

  • Get a reliable contractor and supplier. A competent project manager will save you effort, time, and money from having a nightmare project. Experienced remodeling experts can take over and do the planning, designing, securing of permits, and construction for you.
  • Know what the law requires. Make sure that all state and city requirements are in place. If not, delays in the approvals and permits will push back your schedules and may result in more costs and headaches.
  • Plan for contingencies. It is always best to plan for contingencies in any remodeling process. These are the usual cause for delays from a simple project to a whole house remodel:
    – Disruptions. Unforeseen delays caused by disruptions happen all the time. The store may be closed unexpectedly, or there may be a delay in delivery because of a road accident.
    – Additional expenses in time and money. Make wiggle room in your budget for additional time and expenses. An example of construction delays that affect your timeline is if you need to secure a loan in the middle of the project.
  • Need for temporary housing. If your house is challenging to live in because of the remodeling work, ensure that you can secure your housing needs before construction begins.


Home remodeling timelines vary because of many reasons, such as project scope, budget, permit approval, contractor issues, and the weather, to name a few. When all planned and unplanned factors are wisely considered, you will be saved from experiencing undue delays.

Plan and prepare well for your home remodeling. Successfully meet your deadlines. The best is to consult experienced home remodeling experts to get the best information for your dream home-to-remodel project.

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