Construction Law

The Differences Between Remodels, Renovations, and Restorations featured image

The Differences Between Remodels, Renovations, and Restorations

When discussing construction contracts, one can reasonably argue that the defining characteristic is the improvement of real property. This can be achieved in a number of ways, including remodeling, renovating, and restoring, but contractors often find that their subcontractors fail to understand the nuances that separate these three types of projects.

On the project site, communication is key if you want your team to be successful. Relaying messages from the owner and facilitating communications between various contracted parties can greatly improve efficiency on the project site. Everyone needs to be on the same page from day one to ensure that projects proceed according to plan. The first order of business should be establishing a clear vision of the project being worked on, including important terms and definitions that are often jumbled, such as remodel, renovation, and restoration. 

In this brief article, a Central FL construction lawyer will explain the differences between these three terms. When a subcontractor or contractor is unaware of the scope of work for their services because they don’t understand the terminology being used in the contract, it can lead to potential disputes. Consult a Central FL construction lawyer before you sign a new contract to ensure that you are fully cognizant of the scope of work and avoid a potential breach of contract.


When a contractor makes changes to an existing structure, whether residential or commercial, it is considered a remodel. Remodeling isn’t contingent on a significant issue affecting an existing structure; rather, it aims to change the aesthetic or purpose of a structure or portion of a structure. For instance, in a commercial office building, one floor might be renovated to better facilitate a call center after originally being utilized as the headquarters for an advertising agency. In residential construction, converting an oversized den into a master bedroom would be another example of a remodel.


Renovations and remodels are nearly synonymous, except for the fact that a renovation aims to update a structure or portion of a structure, whether commercial or residential, to make it feel new again. Adding new finishes and fixtures, replacing old windows, and changing flooring are examples of renovations. These changes help update a structure, but it doesn’t change the purpose of the structure.


Unlike remodels and renovations, which aim to invigorate a space with new functionalities or features, a restoration aims to do the opposite. Restoration projects are designed to restore a structure to its former glory by replicating its past look. These projects are somewhat rare and require a high level of attention and patience, but they allow contractors to increase the longevity of historic structures for future generations.

Whether you’re working on a remodel, renovation, or restoration, the most important thing to keep in mind is that your contract needs to accurately reflect the work being completed. Fortunately, this can be achieved with the help of a Central FL construction lawyer.  

If you would like to speak with one of our Central FL contractor lawyers, please contact us today.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.