Elevating One Home At A Time For Homeowners In Northeast Indiana

Remodeling vs. Renovating: Definitions & Key Differences

If you are considering modifying your home, it’s likely that you’ve heard of both the terms remodeling and renovating. The two words are often used interchangeably, and there is some overlap between their definitions.

Nevertheless, the terms have distinct implications and should not be confused. 

To help homeowners understand these important distinctions, this blog post will define each concept clearly and explain how they differ from one another.

Kitchen renovation

What Is Home Renovation?

Home renovation implies making changes or improvements to an existing home. 

This can include everything from minor upgrades to major overhauls, such as adding an extension, redoing a kitchen, or renovating a bathroom.

The result can be both functional and visually appealing, tailored to fit your unique needs and style.

Home remodeling with tearing down walls

What Is Home Remodeling?

Home remodeling projects are more extensive, more expensive, and pose a higher upgrade for your living space. 

They can change the existing structure of your home and go beyond installing new light fixtures and repainting your kitchen cabinets.

Think of remodeling as completely changing your wardrobe and throwing out old and outdated clothes are replacing them with new items.

The Key Differences Between Remodeling vs. Renovating

While the terms “home renovation” and “home remodeling” are often used interchangeably, they do have slight key differences worth mentioning.

Renovation Keeps the Room's Structure and Purpose

The function of a kitchen or bedroom is not altered during remodeling, but it may receive cosmetic changes. 

Common examples of this type of work are repainting, laying down new flooring, and replacing fixtures like door handles and sink faucets.

Repairing the structure is part of the renovation as well. If rotten wood is found in a wall, subfloor, or roof, it will be removed and replaced with new lumber.

Renovation project in a living space with white subfloor and fireplace

A Remodel Transforms the Design of a Room

Whether it’s increasing bathroom space or reimagining your kitchen layout, remodeling is the perfect solution for creating your dream home.

From minor alterations like converting a guest room into a home office to the construction of whole new additions, remodeling offers endless possibilities to elevate and enhance the functionality and beauty of your living space.

And with each thoughtful adjustment, you’ll experience the satisfaction of transforming your home into something uniquely your own.

Remodeling Projects Require Permits 90% of the Time

If you’re thinking of renovating or remodeling your home, it’s essential to know when you’ll need to pull a permit. While simple renovations like painting and updating flooring may not require one, anything that involves structural changes or additions typically does.

This can include tearing out walls or putting on a new roof. And while it may seem like a pain to go through the permit process, it ensures that proper building codes are followed and that your home stays safe for years to come.

Building permits require for remodeling

You Can Renovate Yourself. You Need a Contractor for Remodeling

Remodeling projects are carried out with expertise, so they’re not a great option for the average DIYer. You’ll need to mess with electric wiring and plumbing, install new floors, and perform a series of other tasks best left in the hands of experienced contractors.

From painting to installing trim work, renovation project tasks can be tackled by a motivated homeowner with a bit of time and skill. While checking your local regulations is important, many communities allow unlicensed homeowners to take on certain renovations.

Just be sure to leave the heavy-duty projects, like pouring a new foundation or framing a roof, to the pros.

Remodeling Improves a Home's Poor Structure/Design

Everyone’s design preferences are different, but when you’re dealing with poor home design and structure, you need to consider a remodeling project.

If you’re tired of walking through one bedroom to get to another or dealing with frozen water supply pipes, you need more than just minor renovations. While renovations might seem like the easy fix, unfortunately, they won’t solve these problems.

Remember that older homes are usually more susceptible to flawed designs that don’t meet today’s modern building codes.

Small renovation project in a room with wood floors

Historic Homes Demand Renovation

If you’re a fan of vintage architecture, owning a Victorian house listed on the National Register of Historic Places can be an exciting prospect. Although, be warned – you can’t shape it into a brand-new home.

Renovations are limited for historic houses, and restoration is the primary route that homeowners must take. You’ll need to retain the original look and feel of the property as closely as possible, which means opting for repairs instead of replacements.

It’s all about preserving the value of these architectural treasures while retaining their old-world elegance. While some flexibility is permitted, such as installing storm windows, drastic changes to the design or purpose are off-limits.

Remodeling Costs More

Redesigning a living space can be quite costly, especially if you decide to go the route of a remodel. This is because many remodeling projects involve a more complicated process and may require additional specialized labor to rework the existing infrastructure of a home.

Home additions are also part of a remodeling project and involve adding a new structure attached to your existing home. It could be anything from a breakfast nook to a master suite addition.

Also, the materials used in a remodel are often more expensive since they may involve new construction. On the other hand, renovations are often more budget-friendly due to their less complex nature. It’s cheaper to repaint kitchen cabinets rather than replace them with new custom-made ones (often a great part of a major kitchen remodel).

Remodeling entire home with the drywall and frame visible


From recognizing the key differences between renovation and remodeling, to understanding the implications associated with each project, we have covered a lot in this blog post. 

After exploring what home renovation and home remodeling are, which projects require permits, how they both can improve a home’s structure and design, as well as their respective goals and objectives, it is clear that there is a lot of nuance in selecting which one to handle.

JN Tiling and Construction can assist you in managing your home remodeling and additions project professionally. We work with you to provide an assessment specific to your needs.

Give us a ring today at (260) 316-4537 or you can request your free quote here, and we’ll circle back!