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How much does it cost to renovate a dining room?
Design factors you'll need to consider for your budget and how to get financing.
A dining room renovation is what you make of it. It can cost as little as $150 or as much as $20,000 and beyond, depending on the size of your project. The final cost will depend on how much you choose to spend on the various areas: walls, windows, ceilings, moldings, lighting, floors, heating and furniture.
So what do you need to think about when renovating your dining room to create a beautiful and functional space? And how much will the average dining room renovation cost?
What's in this guide?
How much does it cost to renovate a dining room?
As with any renovation project, costs vary substantially depending on the size of the room being renovated and the standard of finishes and furnishings you want to include. A premium dining room renovation, including new furniture, flooring, lighting and extras, could cost anywhere from $12,000 to $20,000 or more.
However, you could also achieve quite impressive results on a much smaller budget. For example, with a budget of just $1,000 you can patch and paint the walls, doors and ceiling, install a stylish pendant light as a point of interest, freshen up the curtains and carefully choose a few decorative accessories, all of which can create a stunning transformation.
What area of the dining room are you planning to renovate?
A new coat of paint can make a huge difference to the look and feel of your space. It’s often the cheapest and most powerful improvement you can make, and for a low-budget dining room renovation, a patch and paint job can transform your space for just a few hundred dollars.
For premium renovations, there are a few clever ways to create an elegant and sophisticated atmosphere, without having to redo an entire room:
- Hamptons-style paneling
- Wood veneer feature wall
- Luxury look using textured wallpaper
- Architectural wall niche or recess
Windows are an expensive and time-consuming item to replace. In most cases, a fresh coat of paint and updated window dressings can be more than enough. Another option is to pick up a new set of curtains or shades to enhance the look from inside.
Low-budget and Standard
- Off-the-shelf curtains from wayfair.com or Walmart $20 per window and up
- Prefabricated shutters from local hardware or home stores $50 per set
- Composite shutters $80-$200 per window
- Wood shutters $200-$350 per window
- High-quality custom shutters $20-$45 per square foot
- Custom dressings and fixtures start at roughly $400 per window plus installation costs
The ceiling is an area sometimes neglected by renovators, but just a few simple touches can make a big difference to the quality of the finished room. There is an assortment of different textures and products you can use to coat your ceiling, but a fresh coat of paint is often more than enough.
One gallon of ceiling paint ranges from around $30–$65.
- Patch and paint existing ceiling, baseboard, and ceiling moldings
- Remove existing moldings and replace with a new design
- MDF: $1-$3 per linear foot
- Wood: $1-$6 per linear foot
- Exotic woods: $10-$45 per linear foot
- Installation: $2-$6 per linear foot
- Depending on the style of your dining room, you may want to consider a more intricate ceiling design. Exposed beams, coffered ceilings, wood paneling, and tray ceilings are all great options. Expect to pay upwards of $3,000 for any of these options, likely much more for larger rooms.
Great lighting makes a huge difference in any room and it’s crucial to creating the atmosphere you want. Whether it’s a new set of recessed lights in your ceiling or a statement pendant light, a change in lighting can provide a better ambiance and a focal point for the room. Many daylight or cool bulbs tend to make for a more clinical atmosphere. Instead, consider using warmer bulbs which infuse a sense of warmth and ambiance into your gathering around the dinner table.
- Lighting: Starting at $200. A single pendant light fitting is the most cost-effective way to address your lighting situation, and there is a wide range of fittings and styles to choose from. The versatility in design and style allow you to find something fantastic on nearly any budget.
Electrical control. Clean up existing switches and power points to match the look and feel of your room.
- Lighting: $1000. LED recessed lights ($25 each) and/or a high end pendant light fitting ($300)
Electrical control. New light switches and power points in classic white
- Lighting: $1,500+ recessed lights and pendants; accent lighting including wall washers and/or spotlights
Electrical control. New light switches and power points. You may want to consider higher quality materials like glass or wood to match the decor of the room. Additionally, intelligent lighting controls that integrate sensors or smart controls can add functionality to an already appealing space.
If you have an existing hardwood floor in the dining room, sanding and sealing it is the most cost-effective finish in any budget. But if your existing floors are not suitable, replacing your flooring can be one of the most expensive parts of your renovation.
- Floating laminated floor. While laminate floors are technically not wood, the products are so good these days that it is very difficult to tell the difference. Go for the widest board you can and a minimum 12mm thickness for a quality look. Cost: $5-$10 per square foot installed.
- Floating laminated or engineered floor. The next step up is still a floating floor board but with a 3–4mm wood veneer. Once again, go for a wide board if possible, as it provides a much more elegant look. Cost: $10-$15 per square foot installed.
- If you have the budget, go for the widest board available, which can be as wide as 10 inches. If not, consider a recycled wood board in either engineered floor or solid wood direct stick flooring. Cost: $15–$25 per square foot installed.
The most cost-effective way to heat and cool any room is through a heat pump system, either as a standalone unit or as part of a ducted system. Cost: $3,500-$7,500 including installation
In older homes, you may have an existing fireplace which you should preserve. Original features are often desirable but not always an efficient means of heating. You might choose to keep and use the existing fireplace for the added ambience of a crackling fire, or you can install a more efficient system such as a gas fireplace to get the best of both worlds. Cost: $2,500 including installation.
Furniture is the last item on the list but is also one of the most important considerations. The first thing you’ll need is a table and chairs, with prices varying greatly depending on the size and quality of the product you choose.
- Four-seater table and chairs: $150–$350; six-seater table and chairs: $300–$800; eight-seater table and chairs: $800+
- Four-seater table and chairs: $400–$800; six-seater table and chairs: $700–$1,400; eight-seater table and chairs: $1,400+
- Four-seater table and chairs: $1,000+; six-seater table and chairs: $2,000+; eight-seater table and chairs: $2,500+
Depending on your space, you may need a sideboard or end table. Prices again differ substantially according to the size and quality of the unit, so you can expect to pay anywhere from $200 to $2,000.
The final major item you may need is a rug. Make sure to shop around and keep an eye out for sales to help you find the best possible deal. Rugs can get expensive quickly, but above all else, it’s important to find one that’s the right size.
Financing options for dining room renovations
Formal dining room vs. open floor plan
Many dining rooms are more often part of an open floor plan living room, dining room or kitchen arrangement, which are designed to flow together as one coordinated space. Regardless of the type of your living room, decor, paint, and trim play a huge role in the overall aesthetic of the room.
If you’re including a rug, make sure it’s large enough that the chairs still neatly sit over it when pulled out. In an open-plan setting, you also need to think carefully about where you place your dining table and chairs, as it can have a major impact on how traffic circulates through the space. Placing it against a wall as opposed to the center of the room will completely change how people perceive the space, while opening the options for where other furniture is placed. Your opinion may change as you go, so it’s always a good idea to draw up a floor plan with all the furniture mapped out before you go shopping.
Alternative options to increase the value of your renovation
Regardless of your choice of project, renovations add the most value when they blend with the rest of the house using consistent color, style and finish throughout. While planning and shopping for your renovation, bringing along pictures of your home, paint swatches, or inspiration photos can help provide direction.
Financing your dining room renovation
While many simple projects can make a huge impact for a small price, renovations can quickly add up in cost. Whether you’ve exceeded your budget, underestimated costs, or simply have a large project to tackle, there are a handful of ways you can finance your home renovations.
Depending on the size of the project, here are a few options you might want to consider:
- Personal loan. If you already have an idea of what your renovation is going to cost, a personal loan might be the best choice. You can borrow the exact amount that you need, and you’ll make scheduled payments to repay the amount of the loan. Explore your personal loan options then apply for the option that suits your needs.
- Personal line of credit. Personal lines of credit fall somewhere between credit cards and personal loans. Rather than putting your purchases on a personal credit card or borrowing a lump sum, a personal line of credit can provide a flexible way to finance your renovation. Explore personal lines of credit to find the best option for your project.
- Home loan. For bigger projects like renovating an entire room, floor, or roof, for example, you might consider a home loan. You could even use a home equity loan (HELOC), in this case, you’ll sign off a portion of the equity in your house in return for a loan to finance your renovations. Just like a personal loan, you’ll make set monthly payments until the loan has been repaid in full.
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