mt hawthorn home renovation and extended by amerex renovations

Recycling and Repurposing Ideas for Your Home Renovation

Did you know that there are a number of ways you can recycle or repurpose parts of your home when renovating?

Prior to commencing your renovation and most certainly before you start any demolition, take a walk around your home and tag anything that can be recycled or repurposed. The less that ends up in the verge bin, the less that will end up in landfill! If you can’t repurpose it yourself, then there are probably others that are interested in re-using what you are about to throw away.

As they say, one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. So even if you do not have a use for something, there are others that will.

Some great ideas for repurposing and recycling materials during a home renovation include:

Repurposing heritage features

Where possible, save heritage features such as leadlight windows and repurpose them by carefully removing them and then building them into the new part of your home extension. These can add great character and charm to your home – even in the new areas!

Windows – A word of caution. Restoring old windows can be very labour intensive and take hours of sanding and repairing. In days gone by, they were usually painted with lead-based paint, so there are some real health concerns to be mindful of. You will need to weigh up the amount of effort involved versus the outcome. Some homeowners get a lot of satisfaction out of this type of DIY renovation task. Beautifully restored old windows are indeed a great feature and can even become a talking point in your home!

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Repurpose old kitchen cupboards

If you are renovating your kitchen, it is likely you will be removing old overhead cupboards. These do not have to end up in the skip bin. Old kitchen overhead cupboards can be repurposed to provide valuable storage space in your shed or garage.

Re-use bricks for paving

Clean up old bricks from the demolition stage of your project and use these for paving or garden walls. Old bricks are perfect for paving a courtyard or down the side of the home. This is a great job for the home handyman and with a bit of elbow-grease can save money on pavers while also adding some character to your outside areas.


Re-using Jarrah floorboards

Timber floorboards can be re-used and add character and charm to your home.  Be aware that you will need to allow for 30 per cent waste when removing old boards as you will find many will be brittle and break when removing them. It is becoming increasingly difficult to source old floorboards so if you are unable to save enough of the existing to be re-used, don’t count on being able to get matching boards. In addition, new floorboards may not be available in the same width as the old boards. Do your homework first.

Salvage what you can and make some pocket money

After the demolition stage, there are many materials that your local salvage yard will happily purchase. Don’t expect to make big bucks, but a bit of pocket change is always nice. Typical examples of salvage items include old bricks and roof tiles and anything that has heritage features such as an old window with leadlight that is no longer suitable for your home.


Doors and retro light fittings – sell second-hand

Take a fresh look at everything before you start your renovation and think about what can be repurposed. If you have old doors, light fittings and anything that you are getting rid of because you simply don’t like them anymore, sell them second-hand. If it doesn’t suit your home it might suit someone else’s.

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Recycling – separating out your renovation rubbish

Use colour coded recycling bins to separate all the rubbish generated from your renovation project. Recyclable materials include steel, aluminium, plasterboard, timber, concrete, carpet, bricks and tiles, plastics and glass. If you are not sure, contact your local council for advice.

If you are interested in kicking off a large renovation or extension project, we are standing by to help. Amerex are Perth’s leading home renovation company with a stack of industry awards including the WINNER of the WA HIA Professional Small Builder/Renovator of the Year a Western Australian record number of 5 times.

We live and breathe home renovations and are here to help you.