House Renovation

Renovating your home? Be prepared for price hikes, project delays

SINGAPORE: Expected price increases and likely project delays will not stop homeowners from engaging the services of renovation companies.

The demand is expected to remain strong next year, observers said, even as some renovation firms warned of price increases of up to 20 per cent.

It could force homeowners to choose ready-made cabinets or decorative works over custom-made ones.

This comes as renovation companies here deal with rising material and manpower costs.

RISING MATERIALS, LABOR COSTS

The price of cement, for example, has increased by up to 20 per cent. Steel, a key material for construction, has gone up about 50 per cent.

The shipping of raw materials also does not come cheap.

Ms Jillien Lum, senior designer at Renozone Interior Design House, said: “The shipping of raw materials, like cement and tiles, will actually add up and increase the renovation costs by about approximately 10 per cent.”

Renovation firms are currently seeing interest in their services rise by at least 20 per cent, as homeowners push to have their renovations done before the new Goods and Services Tax (GST) increase kicks in on Jan 1.

Meanwhile, some observers believe the renovation industry may need another six to eight months to catch up on the backlog of projects as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

One new Woodleigh flat, for example, will be welcoming its first owners soon, after a two-month holdup in completing the renovation. Many of the furnishings in the flat are custom-made.

D Editors, the firm behind the project, blamed the delay on a shortage of skilled subcontractors and the coronavirus situation.

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