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White House on the Beach

Should you Build a New House, or Should you Remodel?

You may want to wait until you finish reading this article if you've owned your house for a long time and this Sacramento market makes you want to sell it and build a new one.

Building a house or remodeling is not something to be taken lightly. Each requires a great deal of knowledge, experience, and organization. Both choices vary significantly regarding budget, schedule, and the resulting structure. The option that fits you will depend on your personal goals. In this article, we will outline the differences between both options. We hope this will answer your question about whether you should build a new house or remodel an existing one.

At SKYLINE, we offer both services. We include architectural design, finish design, and the complete building process for new construction. Remodeling can also be designed in-house. We can remodel anything from a small kitchen to a full-house renovation.

You may find many differences between these options. However, our construction management team's quality of work is the same for both. Let's first define the options.

New Construction Defined

It's pretty straightforward. You find land and build a house from the ground up. Another option is to tear down your existing home and construct a new one on the land you already own. This second option is less likely, but it does happen.

Our construction managers, interior designers, and architects will collaborate to create the house of your dreams. From the architectural design to what type of finishes you would like, we are prepared to meet your every need.

Remodel Defined

Essentially you are making changes to your existing home. Whether it be a small bathroom in the guest room or an overhaul of your house. It involves using what you own and changing it to meet your current situation. It can bring life back into your house when you feel constrained by an outdated home. Remodeling can involve altering a structure. It can be an exterior or interior alteration. A few examples involve:

· Adding or taking away from the exterior or interior of your existing structure.

· Combining rooms within your house, such as combining two small rooms to make one colossal mother-in-law suite.

· Changing the layout of any room.

· Adding a garage.

· Completely changing the structure or style of your house to where it is unrecognizable.

Our team is prepared to assist in the redesign of your existing home. We can advise you on what will look better aesthetically or which wall you want to keep to avoid the house crumbling down.

House Layout and Aesthetic

The look of your house and how practical it is for your day-to-day can significantly impact your design and decision. When you invest in building a new home or remodeling, you will want the results to fit the functionality and aesthetic of your home. The last thing you want is to spend so much money to be displeased about the layout of your house or realize it does not provide the comfort and aesthetic you aimed to achieve.

New Construction

You have much more control over your home's entire design and look. You may be restricted by budget, codes, and regulations, but this option offers the most overall liberties. Amongst other things, you can choose the room sizes, layout, and ceiling height. You can easily build that wine cellar to fit your Sacramento wines or create the secret playroom your children keep asking for. Everything about this home can suit your taste and needs.


You probably guessed that you are much more restricted with this option. Since there is an existing structure, it may be challenging to change ceiling heights, room sizes, and overall space. You can knock down walls, redo finishes, and add to the building, but you can only change so much at the end of the day. Especially if there are several load-bearing walls.

That said, it can be an excellent option for a house with an old charm that you want to remodel to fit your needs. Sacramento is 172 years old, so you are bound to find a beautiful old house that may need your TLC to make it a modern/historic home. It can be hard to mimic the uniqueness of older homes these days. If older homes appeal to you, this is a better option. After all, with ingenuity and compromise, most houses can be altered to create a more functional home.

Project Duration of New Construction Vs. Remodeling

Several factors can affect the project duration. The extent of existing property damage, if utilities need to be brought into undeveloped land, and material availability. Let's take a look at the differences between each.

New Construction

This will likely have the longest duration. There is a great deal of work involved in new construction. You are starting from a piece of land and creating a building one can dwell in. Some things that may affect the duration are:

· Whether utilities need to be brought in.

· The lot may need to be cleared, leveled, and graded.

· Soil may need to be replaced if the existing one is not fit for the building.

· Permitting may take longer, depending on the design of your home.

· The weather could be a factor until the house is closed in.

· Shortage of labor.

· Owner last-minute changes.

We all want the process to be seamless. However, these factors must be considered when deciding which way to go.


This option tends to be the quickest. This is because you don't need to start from the ground up. Even when gutting the entire house, you still have the foundation set and structure already erected. The construction crew has less work to do, and the weather is not usually a factor since the building is typically closed in. Permitting may be faster since you are not proposing a brand-new building but rather renovating an existing one.

However, the old charm historical house you have been looking at could have a longer duration than a new house. This is because there may be environmental factors that need to be tackled before the renovation of the house. Your vintage home may have mold or asbestos, the pipes may be old, and the electricity may need rewiring. You may even need a new roof.

Considering these timeline factors is essential when deciding between remodeling or building a new house. Research the existing building and conduct a thorough inspection before you choose to remodel because you may find that a new home is the best option. Even if it's your beloved home, you would be surprised what you'll find will make you want to build rather than remodel.

Cost of New Construction Vs. Remodeling

This is typically the most divisive factor, with good reason. Most people want to get the best house for the lowest price.

These two can vary significantly depending on several factors. At SKYLINE, we have reliable, detailed, and honest estimators waiting to give you a quote regardless of your choice. Let's look at what may be the factors that affect the cost of each.

New Construction

It may be evident that this is usually the more expensive option. Many of the same factors that affect the timeline also affect the cost.

· Land purchase.

· If utilities need to be brought in and impact fees.

· Square footage and design of the home.

· Materials used. Although this could also affect remodeling, new construction will require more materials, especially for the structure.

· Design of the house.

· Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing.

· Lot level and grading.

· Permitting.


If you are remodeling the interior only without adding a structure, this could prove less costly. However, sometimes you start the remodeling process and find that your contractor keeps adding change orders. They are not doing this out of spite, but several unforeseen issues may arise from remodeling. Some of these factors may be:

· The electrical may need to be rewired entirely depending on the age of the house.

· Plumbing may need to be brought up to code.

· Mold, rotten wood, or asbestos may be found.

· Structural issues may be found.

· Changing the layout of the house.

· Access to the existing home.

As mentioned previously, ensure you thoroughly inspect the house before you decide to renovate. This avoids unnecessary and unwanted surprises and helps you make the right decision.


Ultimately, the decision lies in what's most essential for you, cost, timeline, or functionality.

Building a new house will give you the control you may desire. It will fit your every need since you are designing it from scratch and is flexible when deciding the size, materials, and layout.

On the other hand, remodeling may be more cost-effective if you've taken every precaution to know what is happening within the house's walls.

If you enjoy your house but want an upgrade or have fallen in love with a historic home and want to bring it up to code, remodeling may be the better choice.

At SKYLINE, we are prepared to help you weigh your options and make this decision. Contact us to discuss your project and help you determine what works best for you.

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