Contrasts in Ground Up Construction & Renovation

Trying to decide between renovating your current structure or constructing a brand new building can be difficult. Your current location may be too small or lack adequate facilities for daily operations, but the project is delayed by the difficult choice. The first place to start is learning the difference between ground-up construction and renovation. Differentiating between the two will help you focus on what is the best solution for your business needs, and will assist in the budgeting and planning phases of your project.

What is Ground Up Construction?

As the name suggests, ground-up construction involves building a structure on an empty lot or patch of land. Ground-up construction involves more planning than renovation, which is why it can take months of planning before the project can move forward. In some cases, ground-up construction consists of knocking down an existing building or structure before starting.

What is Renovation?

As for renovation, you don’t have to create an entirely new structure – instead, you look for ways to adapt and expand your existing building. It’s the alternative that many contractors prefer because many of the key elements are already in place like electrical and plumbing.

Benefits of Ground Up Construction

If your project involves ground-up construction, there are several benefits – you know you are working on a solid foundation, and you can ensure that industry standard protocols are followed. Your contractor uses brand new construction materials to create your building, so you can be confident in the structural integrity. Through regular maintenance, repairs on the structure will be kept to a minimum for years to come.

Besides creating a well-built structure, you can also outfit it with more advanced materials and technology, such as energy-saving appliances and fixtures, adding stucco access doors and panels to provide easier access to building components and more. You have free rein to have the structure built just as you envisioned during the initial planning stages.

Benefits of Renovation

Conducting a renovation project also has many benefits – since you’re not building from scratch, renovation can have a much shorter timeline. If you’re on a strict schedule, renovation of an existing building may require less time and expense. A contractor can look at your requirements and work within your budget, and plan a renovation that best suits your needs, and usually in less time than ground up construction.

When you choose renovation, you can also save money since it only involves a section of the building. This will reduce the amount of materials required. Some examples of low-cost renovation projects include repainting one side of a wall or replacing flooring in one section.

Drawbacks of Ground Up Construction

While ground-up construction has advantages, it also comes with its fair share of disadvantages. One of those is the many permits you have to acquire before starting with the project. Some licenses you will need to get include paving, landscaping, building, plumbing, and electrical, to name a few.

Since you have to get so many permits, this can cause delays in your construction project and increase costs since some permits take weeks or months to process. That’s why many contractors gather all of the necessary licenses as early as possible to ensure they can reduce the project’s timeframe.

Drawbacks of Renovation

While you may consider renovations to be cheaper and quicker than ground-up construction, remember this: renovating means working on an existing building which may have hidden issues that your contractors only discover during the reno process. If there are structural issues, this can mean a huge set back in terms of your budget and your timelines. If your building lacks structural integrity, you may have to demolish sections and rebuild. Doing so will add unexpected costs to the renovation and slow down the entire process.

Be sure to discuss your renovation or ground-up construction plans with your contractor or construction team. Determining the differences between the two, and what your end goal is will help you to choose the right option!



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