Modernize your house: 7 starting points for a successful renovation

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Before and after of a home renovation

When it comes to cars, you often hear the half-joking saying that when you take a test drive after buying it, the value of the car has already halved. This is not the case with a house; the value usually lasts for a long time. But a long time does not mean forever: in order to keep the property lucrative, renovation and, ideally, modernization is necessary.

In this guide we give you starting points for the central elements of a renovation so that your house modernize in a targeted manner and maintain or even increase their value for as long as possible.

1. First there must be secured financing

As with other construction projects, modernizing a house can be a real cost trap. So that you don’t experience any unpleasant surprises, the financing should be be well insured in advance and go beyond a company’s estimate.

Tip: If possible, get a quote from a second company. Not necessarily to choose the cheapest, but to compare the listed measures and costs for both parties.

There are several options for financing, from very general loans to specially coordinated modernization loans. If the renovation includes energy-related modernization, you can apply for funding through KfW or BAFA, but this is strictly earmarked and requires proof. Is her Heating older than 15 years and if significant energy losses are noticeable, for example due to excessive heating in the boiler room, you can find out about possible government subsidies for a modern heating system, as listed at

2. Good insulation saves costs in the long term

Funding is available for energy-efficient renovations

When taking out a loan, you should always take into account any possible subsidies; for example, there are subsidies for insulating an old house.

The energy loss due to poor insulation can be enormous. Old houses in particular often have inadequate insulation and if you modernize the property, should a better insulating material for walls and roof be at the forefront of the planning. When insulating the facade, however, it should be noted that although the effect on heat loss is particularly high, so too are the costs for renovation – despite possible funding.

If you want it to be a little cheaper, it’s a good idea, for example to renovate the basement ceiling or the first floor ceiling with new insulation.

But be careful if you do the insulation yourself. Depending on the year of construction, the walls and roofs may contain harmful building materials. In the 60s and 70s, wood preservatives containing PCP were widespread Asbestos ban only existed in the mid-90s. If there is any uncertainty regarding the materials, the work should only be carried out by specialists.

3. A lot of heat is lost through old windows

The rubber seal on a window is being replaced

Even smaller measures such as replacing a rubber seal can have significant consequences for the insulation.

Windows are also often responsible for a lot of heat loss. Even if the walls are insulated in a modern way, it can A poorly sealed window can undo a significant amount of good work. There are various relevant factors.

The glass surface itself is the obvious main element of a window, but especially in an old house they are Window frames are usually not insulated at all or only inadequately insulated. Any seals that may be used also lose their effectiveness over time.

For an energy-efficient renovation, the windows must either resealed or completely replaced become. A nice side effect here is that better insulated windows also provide better sound insulation.

4. High heating costs are sometimes directly due to the heating system

An inefficient heating system is particularly painful, especially when energy prices are constantly rising. In addition, many people are thinking about switching the fuel for their homes afterwards. For older heating systems, it can definitely make sense to completely modernize the heating system.

various measures during a renovation

Modernizing a house creates a lot of construction sites. Set priorities so that the overview is not lost.

5. A new coat of facade paint is immediately noticeable

While the methods already described were mainly limited to their utilitarian effect, is A new coat of paint on the facade is also a visual sign that you are modernizing your house. This is sometimes urgently necessary, because investing a lot of time and money in modernization without being able to compare the before and after at a glance can be frustrating.

Of course, it’s not as easy as painting the interior, because apart from the scaffolding, there is often one comprehensive cleaning and priming of the surface provided.

6. Solar systems support the energy supply


A solar system is always particularly worthwhile if you have a south-facing area, in most cases the roof of a house.

With a photovoltaic system you can not only save energy, but also generate energy yourself and then feed it into the grid. By retrofitting With solar systems you contribute to greener energy production.

The BEG offers subsidies for renewable energies and covers part of the costs of a solar system through grants.

7. Old electrical installations are not designed for modern needs

Installation of sockets

A new electronics installation may not be visible as an impressive before and after comparison, but the benefits in terms of usability and safety are enormous.

Thirty years ago, architects and engineers had completely different ideas about how to use houses when building houses than they do today. This becomes clear not only in the materials used, but also in the electrical installation.

An old house offers There are usually far too few sockets for modern requirements, because the planning did not of course take into account the countless electronic devices that we surround ourselves with these days. So the bathroom doesn’t have a suitable connection within reach, but the living room has to Connect several devices to one socket using plug strips and sometimes you have to be patient before you get access to the power grid.

But that’s not the only problem. After all, they too have each other Safety precautions further developed, and old buildings are sometimes not equipped with protective conductors and switches. Renovating the electrical installation can therefore make sense if you notice defects in several places and availability and safety are not sufficiently guaranteed.

Adapt these and other factors to modern needs, The value of the property can be increased significantly. And especially in the long term, many changes in energy consumption are worthwhile, which also represents a benefit for the environment.

Image credits: Dean,,,, (chronologically or in the order of Images used in the buying guide sorted)