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How do I set a budget and organise finance for my home improvements?

How do I set a budget and organise finance for my home improvements?

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Cost will of course be one of the key considerations when planning your home improvement project. To help keep it under control and make decisions you should set a budget early on and try to keep to it!

Decide on your needs and have a goal in mind - prioritising goals will help you keep costs in control by making decisions about what you really need.

Get an estimate (then add at least 10%) for each stage of the work. Builders' and tradespeople's costs are more likely to increase than come down so build in at least a 10% contingency.

And always keep in mind that there may be unforeseen costs.

Remember to factor in costs for the following if they're required for your particular job:

  • Planning permission and/or building control fees
  • Architects' or structural surveyor fees
  • Party wall surveyors' costs
  • Permits for some structural alterations
  • Acoustic reports 

N.B. Home improvements should be carried out by trusted tradespeople. Find out how to choose and work with a builder on your home improvements.


For cosmetic home improvements, funding from high street lenders could be an option, or digging into your savings.

For larger jobs like extensions or those that will need major structural work then a specialist lender may be the route to follow. Renovation-specific, or stage payment mortgages are available (payments are made at either the beginning or end of each stage). 

Grants may also be available for some renovation works, either from local authorities or from the UK government.

Further information

Citizens Advice page on seeking financial help with home improvements