Should You Renovate Inside Or Outside First?

So you’ve finally decided to take on that long overdue renovation project, but now you’re faced with a crucial decision: should you start renovating inside or tackle the exterior first? It’s a dilemma that many homeowners face, and while there’s no definitive answer, there are a few factors to consider. From maximizing efficiency to minimizing disruptions, this article will explore the pros and cons of both options, helping you make an informed decision on how to best approach your home renovation.

Factors to Consider

When planning a renovation project, there are several factors you should consider to help you make an informed decision. These factors include your budget, timeline, weather conditions, and goals for the renovation. Each of these aspects plays a significant role in determining whether you should renovate the inside or outside of your home first.


Your budget is perhaps the most crucial factor to consider when deciding whether to renovate the inside or outside of your home first. Renovating the interior typically involves tasks such as upgrading kitchens, bathrooms, or living spaces, which may require substantial financial investment. On the other hand, renovating the exterior may involve projects like replacing the roof or improving the landscaping, which can also come with a hefty price tag. Carefully evaluate your budget and prioritize which aspects of your home need immediate attention to determine where to allocate your funds first.


Another important consideration is the timeline for your renovation project. If you have specific deadlines or events planned, such as hosting a family gathering or a special occasion, you may want to prioritize renovating the areas that will have the most significant impact on these events. Additionally, consider whether your renovation project requires any permits or approvals that may affect the timeline. Understanding the time constraints will help you decide whether to start with the inside or outside renovations.


The weather conditions in your area can greatly influence the feasibility of renovating either the inside or outside of your home. If you live in an area with harsh winters or rainy seasons, it might be more practical to focus on interior renovations first. This allows you to avoid potential delays or damage that could be caused by inclement weather during exterior renovations. However, if you live in a region with mild and predictable weather, you may have more flexibility in choosing whether to start inside or outside.


Finally, consider the goals you have for your renovation project. Are you looking to enhance your home’s curb appeal, increase functionality and efficiency, or simply update outdated spaces? Understanding your goals will help you determine which areas of your home require immediate attention. Consider how each aspect of the renovation will contribute to achieving your overall vision for your home.

Renovating Inside First


Renovating the inside of your home first offers several advantages. One of the significant benefits is convenience. By starting with interior renovations, you can continue to live in your home while the work is being completed. This minimizes the disruptions to your daily life and allows you to maintain a sense of normalcy. Additionally, focusing on the inside allows you to create an improved living space that meets your specific needs and preferences.


However, renovating the inside first has its drawbacks as well. One major disadvantage is the dependency on weather conditions. If you plan to tackle exterior renovations after the interior is complete, adverse weather could delay the overall timeline of the project. Additionally, exterior work during inclement weather could potentially cause damage to the newly renovated interior, requiring costly repairs. Lastly, interior renovations can create temporary disruptions, such as noise, dust, and limited access to certain areas of your home.

Should You Renovate Inside Or Outside First?

Renovating Outside First


On the other hand, starting with exterior renovations offers its own set of advantages. One significant benefit is the enhanced curb appeal that results from exterior improvements. By upgrading your home’s exterior, you can dramatically transform its appearance, making it more visually appealing to both yourself and potential buyers if you decide to sell in the future. Additionally, renovating the outside first can help protect the existing interior by addressing issues like leaks, cracks, or structural problems that could potentially worsen over time.


However, there are also disadvantages to consider when renovating the outside first. One drawback is the potential disruption of interior spaces. Exterior renovations often involve extensive construction work, which can create noise, vibrations, and dust that seep into your home. This can make living conditions less comfortable and potentially damage items or finishes in the interior. Furthermore, exterior renovations are often weather-dependent, meaning unexpected weather events could delay the completion of the project. This delay may result in a longer wait before being able to enjoy the upgrades to your home’s exterior.

Pros of Renovating Inside First


Renovating the inside of your home first offers the convenience of continuing to live in your home while the work is being done. This eliminates the need to temporarily relocate or find alternative accommodations, saving you both time and money. You can continue with your daily routine and have easier access to essential amenities, such as your kitchen or bathroom, throughout the renovation process.

Improved Living Space

Starting with interior renovations allows you to focus on improving the functionality and aesthetics of the areas you use most frequently. Whether it’s upgrading your kitchen to make cooking and entertaining more enjoyable or renovating your bathroom to create a luxurious retreat, these interior improvements can significantly enhance your daily living experience. By transforming your living spaces, you can create rooms that better align with your personal style and preferences.


By prioritizing interior renovations, you can address any existing issues that may impact your home’s overall efficiency. This includes improving insulation, upgrading windows and doors, or replacing outdated appliances with energy-efficient models. These energy-saving upgrades can help reduce utility costs, enhance comfort levels, and contribute to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly home.

Should You Renovate Inside Or Outside First?

Cons of Renovating Inside First

Weather Dependency

A significant disadvantage of renovating the inside first is the potential delay caused by unfavorable weather conditions for exterior work. If exterior renovations are planned following the interior project, unexpected rain, snow, or extreme temperatures could halt progress and extend the overall timeline. This weather dependency may cause frustration and uncertainty, especially if you have strict deadlines or events planned.

Potential Damage from Exterior Work

During exterior renovations, there is a risk of damage to the newly renovated interior. Construction activities, such as drilling, hammering, or even heavy machinery, can create vibrations that could impact fragile finishes or cause cracks in walls or ceilings. Additionally, if exterior renovations involve the removal of parts of the exterior, such as siding or windows, there is a potential for water or debris to enter your home, leading to water damage or other issues.

Temporary Disruptions

Renovating the inside first often results in temporary disruptions to your daily life. The construction process can generate noise, dust, and debris that can quickly spread throughout your home. These disruptions may require you to modify your routines, relocate to different areas of your home, or even temporarily vacate while certain tasks are being completed. Managing these disruptions can be challenging, especially for families with young children or those who work from home.

Pros of Renovating Outside First

Enhanced Curb Appeal

One of the most significant advantages of renovating the outside of your home first is the immediate boost in curb appeal. The exterior of your home is the first thing visitors and passersby see, and by improving its appearance, you can make a strong first impression. Projects such as landscaping, installing a new front door, or repainting the exterior can greatly enhance the aesthetics of your home, making it more visually appealing and potentially increasing its value.

Protection of Existing Interior

Addressing exterior issues, such as leaks, cracks, or structural problems, can help protect the existing interior of your home. By resolving these issues early on, you prevent further damage that could potentially be more costly to repair in the future. Ensuring a strong and secure exterior will provide peace of mind and minimize the risk of additional problems arising within your home.

Ease of Exterior Work

Exterior renovations often require fewer logistical challenges compared to interior renovations. There are usually no concerns related to relocating furniture, coordinating with other tradespeople, or dealing with potential disruptions to daily routines. Exterior work can also be more straightforward and less invasive, allowing for a smoother construction process without significant interruptions to your day-to-day life.

Should You Renovate Inside Or Outside First?

Cons of Renovating Outside First

Disruption of Interior Space

Renovating the outside of your home first can lead to disruptions within your interior spaces. Construction activities, such as drilling, cutting, or demolishing, can create noise and vibration that may seep into your home, causing discomfort and potential damage. Additionally, exterior renovations may require access to certain interior areas, such as windows or doors, which could limit your ability to use those spaces until the work is complete.

Dependency on Weather

As with interior renovations, exterior renovations are also weather-dependent. Unforeseen weather events, such as rain, snow, or extreme temperatures, can delay the progress of the project, potentially affecting the overall timeline. Planning and scheduling exterior renovations in regions with unpredictable weather patterns can be challenging, as you may need to account for potential delays and make contingency plans accordingly.

Delayed Enjoyment of Upgrades

Renovating the outside of your home first means you may have to wait longer to enjoy the upgrades. While the exterior improvements may enhance your home’s curb appeal, you may have to endure ongoing construction or unfinished areas inside until the interior renovations can be undertaken. This delay in enjoying the complete transformation of your home can be frustrating, especially if you were anticipating the project’s completion.

Considerations for Specific Projects

Kitchen Renovation

When considering whether to renovate the inside or outside first, a kitchen renovation should be given careful thought. As the heart of the home, the kitchen is a vital space that is frequently used. Renovating the kitchen first allows you to create a functional and aesthetically pleasing space that meets your specific needs. However, if the kitchen renovation involves relocating or adding windows, doors, or changing the exterior layout, it may be more practical to complete any necessary exterior renovations first.

Bathroom Renovation

Similarly, a bathroom renovation warrants consideration when deciding on the sequence of renovations. If the bathroom renovation involves plumbing changes or alterations to the exterior wall, it may be preferable to complete any exterior work first to avoid potential restructuring or water damage concerns. On the other hand, if the bathroom renovation is mainly confined to the interior space, it may be more convenient to renovate the bathroom first.

Roof Replacement

When faced with a roof replacement, it might be wise to prioritize exterior renovations. Replacing the roof before undertaking any interior renovations ensures the integrity of the home’s structure and prevents potential water damage. However, if the roof replacement is urgent due to severe leaks or damages, it may be necessary to address this issue first, even if other interior renovations are planned.


Renovating the landscaping of your home is primarily an exterior project. Enhancing your outdoor spaces can greatly improve the overall curb appeal and enjoyment of your property. It is generally recommended to complete any exterior landscaping before tackling interior renovations as construction activities and heavy machinery involved in landscaping projects can potentially impact the interior of your home.

Should You Renovate Inside Or Outside First?

Final Thoughts

Deciding whether to renovate the inside or outside of your home first requires careful consideration of several factors. Your budget, timeline, weather conditions, and goals for the renovation are essential aspects to evaluate before making a decision. While renovating the inside first offers convenience and improved living spaces, it may also result in weather-dependency delays or potential damage from exterior work. Conversely, renovating the outside first provides enhanced curb appeal and protection of the existing interior but may lead to temporary disruptions and delayed enjoyment of upgrades inside. Consider your specific projects, such as kitchen or bathroom renovations, roof replacements, or landscaping, and how they may impact the optimal sequence of renovations. By weighing these factors and considering your priorities, you can make an informed decision that will result in a successful home renovation.