Common Causes of House Renovation Delays

Planning a home renovation is an exciting time. After all, who doesn’t love the idea of turning their house into their dream home? However, as anyone who has ever gone through a renovation can tell you, the process is not without its challenges. Chief among those challenges? delays.

There are any number of reasons why a renovation might be delayed, some of which are beyond your control. However, there are also a number of ways to avoid or at least mitigate the most common causes of delays. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at seven of the most common causes of delays and what you can do to prevent them.

1. Pre-Existing Conditions

One of the most common causes of delays is pre-existing conditions that are discovered during the demolition phase. For example, if your contractor discovers that your electrical system is outdated and needs to be completely replaced, that’s going to add significant time (and expense) to your project. The best way to avoid this type of delay is to have a thorough inspection done before you even begin the planning process. That way, you’ll know exactly what work needs to be done and can plan accordingly.

2. DIY Renovation Errors

Renovation Errors

If you’re planning on doing any of the work yourself (or hiring a friend or family member to do it), be prepared for potential delays. Why? Because chances are good that it will take longer than you expect it to. And even if it doesn’t, there’s always the possibility that something will go wrong. To avoid DIY delays, set realistic expectations and build in a cushion for error.

Related: House Renovation Checklist in Malaysia

3. Long Lead Times & Back Orders

Another common cause of delays is long lead times for materials or products that you need for your renovation. For example, if you’re planning on having custom cabinets installed and the lead time for those cabinets is six weeks, that’s six weeks that your contractor will have to work around. To avoid this type of delay, order all materials and products well in advance of when they’re needed

4. Contractor Scheduling

It’s not uncommon for renovations to be delayed because of scheduling issues with contractors. After all, most contractors have multiple projects going on at any given time and sometimes one project will run over into another. To avoid this type of delay, try to be as flexible as possible with your schedule and be understanding if your contractor needs to push back your start date by a few days (or even weeks)

5. Obtaining Permits

Depending on the scope and scale of your renovation, you may need one or more permits from your local municipality in order to proceed with the work. The process for obtaining these permits can vary widely from one municipality to another but it’s not uncommon for there to be significant delays involved. To avoid this type of delay, start the permit application process as soon as possible and be prepared for potential bumps in the road along the way.

6. Inexperienced Contractors

Another cause of delays that’s worth mentioning is inexperienced contractors who are working on your renovation. These types of contractors are often unfamiliar with the permitting process or unqualified to do certain types of work (like electrical or plumbing work), which can lead to significant delays down the line. To avoid this type of delay, do your research when choosing a contractor and make sure they’re qualified to do the work you need them to do.

7. Weather Conditions

Last but not least, weather conditions can also cause delays during a home renovation (particularly if the work being done is outdoors). To avoid this type of delay, try to schedule your renovation for a time of year when weather conditions are likely to be favorable or build in some extra time into your schedule in case conditions aren’t ideal.


As anyone who has ever gone through a renovation can tell you, delays are par for the course when it comes to home renovations. However, by being aware of the most common causes of delays and taking steps to avoid them where possible, you can help keep your own renovation on track – and maybe even finish ahead of schedule!

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