NYC Apartment Renovation Costs

by | Last updated Jul 10, 2020 | Apartment Renovations

The price range will vary for NYC Apartment Renovation Costs dependent on the extent of the work and the quality of the work. Architects like me tend to use a cost per square foot as a range for describing project budgets. Lets discuss a few price ranges and see what you can expect.

The following ranges are general and will vary on a case by case basis. These are based on a cost per square foot for an apartment renovation in NYC in 2018 with a qualified team of professionals.


  • Less than 100 per square foot – General Repairs and miscellaneous work
  • 100 – 200 per square foot – Decent Quality Renovation (not extensive)
  • 200 – 350 per square foot – Good Quality Gut Renovation 
  • 350 – 500 per square foot – High End Gut Renovation
  • 500 + Per Square foot – Luxury Gut Renovation


NYC Apartment Renovation Hard Costs and Soft Costs

Hard and soft costs are terms we use int eh industry to break up the budget into 2 categories.

Apartment Renovation Hard Costs

Renovation Hard costs are the actual construction related costs. These costs are for materials and physical work. This is all materials and products plus contractors. The apartment hard costs include:

Examples of Construction Hard Costs

  • Construction Contractors and Sub Contractors
  • Materials
  • Products
  • Hardware 

Apartment Renovation Soft Costs

Apartment renovation soft costs are costs related to the work that are not for contractors or physical materials. These soft costs include things like the architect and DOB fees. Expect soft costs to be anywhere between 12% – 25% of the apartment renovation hard costs. This number will vary greatly.

Examples of Construction Soft Costs

  • Architect
  • Engineers
  • Interior Designer or Interior Decorator
  • DOB Filing Fees (Approximately 1% of Construction Hard Costs)
  • Special Inspection Agencies
  • Asbestos Testing or Lead Paint Testing
  • Building Management Review Fees
  • Lawyers Fees for Reviewing Contracts
  • Printing Plans


Less Than 100 Per Square Foot Renovation Budget

General Repairs and miscellaneous work

If your budget is less than 100 dollars per square foot you will definitely not be able to do a gut or complete renovation. Especially not with a qualified team and any type of reasonable quality. This budget is good for general repairs and essentials. Not for complete rehabs.


100- 200 Per Square Foot Renovation Budget

Decent Quality Renovation

A budget of 100 – 200 per square foot is a good budget for a general renovation. You may not be able to do a full gut at this price but you can do an overall renovation with decent quality. If you do a gut renovation at this price you will have a lower quality of products and contractors to choose from. This is in the Ikea / Home depot price range.


200- 350 Per Square Foot Renovation Budget

Good Quality Gut Renovation 

A renovation budget of 200 -350 dollars per square foot is a good budget for a gut renovation. This will allow you to select good products good contractors and have a really nice apartment in the end.


350- 500 Per Square Foot Renovation Budget

High End Gut Renovation

If you can spend 350 – 500 dollars on your apartment renovation budget this is a truly high end gut renovation. At these prices you can pick top of the line products and contractors. You will not have to compromise much with this type of budget even for a gut renovation.


500 + Per Square Foot Renovation Budget

Luxury Gut Renovation

Apartment Renovation budgets over 500 dollars per square foot are true luxury apartments. At this point you can have all top of the line products, hardware, exotic woods, super custom details. This is the real deal luxury apartment renovation. And of course you will pick the top professionals at these budgets.


Apartment Renovation Costs Disclaimer

These are all just rough numbers. There is a lot to be said for people who know how to work with a budget. Also remember we all have a different idea of what a good renovation is or on what high end really means.


Thank You for reading our Blog Post on Apartment Renovation Costs in NYC.

Please feel free to post questions or comments below. If you are interested in discussing a specific project please contact us directly to speak with an architect.


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Jorge Fontan
Jorge Fontan

This post was written by Jorge Fontan AIA a Registered Architect and owner of New York City architecture firm Fontan Architecture. Jorge Fontan has earned 3 degrees in the study of architecture including two degrees from the City University of New York and a Masters Degree in Advanced Architectural Design from Columbia University. Jorge has a background in construction and has been practicing architecture for 15 years where he has designed renovations and new developments of various building types.