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Apartment Renovation: 13 Steps to a Perfect Work

Apartment renovation is a process that, unlike home renovation, requires a series of documentation for the landlord’s approval.

The architect’s challenge is to raise all the necessary changes in the apartment renovation and clearly convey this in a technical report.

After approval, the process of securing the property, breaking down the walls, and dealing with the client’s anxiety begins… But in the end, seeing the joy of the residents makes it all worth it, doesn’t it?

To help you make a perfect apartment renovation, in today’s post, we will give you some tips taken from  apartments on how to make a technical report and 13 essential steps in work. Follow up!

What is a Technical Report for Apartment Renovation?

NBR 16.280/2015 – Building Reforms – Reform Management System – Requirements determines that an apartment renovation can only be carried out with the presentation of a technical report and renovation plan to the trustee.

This obligation does not exist in some very specific cases when only painting or plaster replacement is carried out.

See the situations in which the resident needs to present the technical report for apartment renovation:

  • Installation of industrial equipment and gas systems
  • Changes to hydraulic/sanitary systems
  • Air conditioning installation
  • Cladding and frame replacements
  • Structural changes
  • Glazing of balconies

This ABNT obligation aims to avoid damage caused by poorly executed apartment renovations and bring more security to residents during the apartment renovation stages.

How to Create a Technical Report for Apartment Renovation?

The technical report for apartment renovation must be done by the responsible architect or engineer, who must also present the renovation plan and the RRT (or ART).

But, after all, what does the architect need to include in the technical report for apartment renovation?

The technical report is a scientific document. In this context, it needs to be impersonal and written in the third person.

Remember that it will be read by laypeople, who will probably not understand many terms used by construction professionals.

Therefore, the technical report for apartment renovation needs to have clear and accessible language.

Each professional can create the technical report of apartment renovation according to the information they deem necessary for approval. But there are some essential data. Check it out:

  • Front cover
  • Summary
  • Introduction with customer data (name, RG), RRT and apartment renovation context
  • Projects and documents analyzed for the apartment renovation proposal
  • List of graphic elements (figures, tables, charts)
  • Apartment floor plan
  • Photo report with the environments that will be renovated
  • Details on risk or not of structural damage
  • References used
  • Conclusion
  • Attachments (signed RRT, table of information on service providers, among others).

Apartment Renovation: Where to Start?

Now that you know how to issue an apartment renovation technical report, see the step-by-step guide to delivering perfect work:

  1. Protect the apartment
  2. Start demolition
  3. Dispose of rubbish
  4. Start rebuilding
  5. Perform the electrical installation
  6. Introduce hydraulic installation
  7. Install plaster
  8. Include countertops, marble and granite
  9. Start painting
  10. Apply the coating
  11. Put the lamps
  12. Install the joinery

1- Protect the Apartment

When we talk about where to start a small, medium, or large apartment renovation, the first step is to protect the environment.

Apartment renovation brings a lot of dirt to the space, so it is essential to use newspapers, cardboard, plastics, and other types of materials for protection.

That way, cleaning before the apartment renovation is delivered will be simpler.

Apartment renovation

2- Start the Demolition

If the objective of the project is to change the layout of the apartment, the demolition of the walls begins now.

When renovating a small apartment, it is common for the architect to suggest reconfiguration of the environment to gain more space.

It is also common for this stage of apartment renovation to bring unpleasant surprises like a beam here, an error in the original project there… It’s time to hope to get away with it.

Apartment renovation

It is important to avoid the accumulation of material in a single point of the apartment, as the weight can compromise the structure of the building.

It is recommended to spread the garbage bags throughout the apartment.

3- Dispose of the Rubbish

The correct disposal of rubble is an essential point in apartment renovation.

It is necessary to rent buckets that take the discarded material to landfills accredited by the city hall.

Leaving the material on the sidewalk or empty land in the neighborhood is a fined act, as well as harmful to the environment.

Apartment renovation

4- Start the Rebuild

Now that the apartment is free of debris, the construction of new walls begins.

The architect will indicate the best material to carry out the new fence, which can be brick, drywall, among others.

This part of the apartment renovation gives a new configuration to the layout and allows the start of the execution of complementary projects.

Apartment renovation

5- Carry out the Electrical Installation

Most apartment renovations, especially in older buildings, require a new electrical installation.

At this stage, it is necessary to hire an electrician who will pull new outlets and lighting.

The professional will analyze the electrical project and install the new pipe passages, and circuits, among other necessary adjustments.

Apartment renovation

6- Air Conditioning and Automation

The electrician also works with the professionals who will install the air conditioning or home automation systems in the apartment renovation. Apartments in  have secure installations of air conditioners and heaters.

At this stage, the ducts for the air conditioning and the passages for the automation systems are installed, such as ceiling speaker, and automatic shutters, among others.

Apartment renovation

7- Introduce the Hydraulic Installation

Apartment renovation, when done in bathrooms, toilets, or kitchens, requires the presence of a plumber.

The professional will carry out the change of water points for the installation of sanitary basins, showers, faucets, hot water points, hygienic showers, and bathroom tubs, among other parts.

Apartment renovation

Due to the specifics of the hydraulic system, working in the kitchen or bathroom is the type of apartment renovation that costs more and has more steps.

Just like the electrician, the plumber will need to tear down the walls to perform the service.

Ideally, everything that requires opening the seals is done up to this stage since, after plastering, it is more difficult to correct errors.

8- Install the Lining

The next step of the apartment renovation is to install the ceiling defined in the project.

In addition to helping to hide the roof, beams, and electrical ducts, this element influences the thermal and acoustic comfort of the property.

There are several types of lining, such as plaster, PVC, wood, and exposed concrete, among others. The choice will depend on cost-benefit and customer needs in apartment renovation.

Apartment renovation

For example, if the idea is to emphasize lighting, the plaster ceiling is the right one. If the environment will have an industrial decoration, exposed concrete is the ideal choice.

In the case of a small apartment renovation, light-colored ceilings help to increase the perception of space.

9- Include Countertops, Marble and Granite

Before the apartment renovation finishes, you need to install the sinks and countertops.

As this process can generate a lot of dust and dirt, it is ideal that it is done before the inclusion of coatings and even cabinets.

But in some specific cases of an apartment renovation, the installation of cabinets can be done before the countertop.

The architect must evaluate which is the best order to avoid problems and speed up the delivery of the work.

Apartment renovation

10- Start Painting

From this stage of an apartment renovation, the so-called “clean work” begins, which is nothing more than the finishing process.

Painting can begin before the coatings are installed as a form of pre-finish. After laying the pieces, it is recommended to give a second coat of paint to finish.

Care must be taken not to soil the already laid floor.

Apartment renovation

11- Apply the Coating

The next stage of apartment renovation is the inclusion of coatings. It only happens now to prevent the chosen material, whether ceramic, porcelain, or vinyl, from getting dirty or damaged.

Before starting the process, it is essential during apartment renovation to protect the already painted walls to avoid stains and dirt.

Apartment renovation

In the case of new apartments, the architect must pay attention to the leveling of the floor during the renovation of the apartment. Unfortunately, it is common for some builders to deliver the property with only a small straightening of the slab and not with a subfloor, as it should be.

The quality of the leveling will guarantee a safe and beautiful floor in the apartment renovation.

12- Place the Light Fixtures

With the lining ready, the inclusion of lamps, luminaires, ceiling lights, and spots begins. At this stage of the apartment renovation, the electrician can also install the sockets and switches to finish the electrical part.

Apartment renovation

13- Install the Joinery

Finally, it’s time to include the joinery, appliances, and furniture in the apartment. This is the moment when the thick dirt has already been removed, and the installers can act.

Professionals must take care not to scratch or soil the walls and floors. Any damage at this stage of the apartment renovation can bring a lot of headache for the customer.

Apartment renovation

Important: As soon as you finish the apartment renovation, it is recommended to guide the resident to change the door lock.

This is a safety issue, as many people have contact with the key during construction.


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