Commercial vs. Residential Construction: What is the difference?

Whether you are an Etobicoke new construction company or one of those interested in learning about the industry, there are lots you need to know. Here we will learn the critical differences between residential and commercial construction.

The critical differences between residential and commercial construction

Understanding the difference between commercial and residential construction is essential if you want to construct your home or office.

Commercial construction focuses on big projects that require specialist skills and equipment. For instance, if you want to structure an office or shopping mall, you will need to hire experienced commercial construction Etobicoke Company to handle everything from plumbing installation to electrical work.

Residential construction refers to building homes for families or a group of people. Residential projects are classified as commercial ones if you install drywall since drywalls require special tools, like a saw. However, such tools usually are not needed for other materials used in residential constructions, like wood studs.

Understand commercial construction.

Commercial construction refers to structuring buildings used for commercial purposes. Commercial buildings frame the most significant part of the construction industry, including non-residential and residential structures like hospitals and hotels. Commercial realty is the ownership or management of properties built to serve as office buildings, apartments, shopping centers, industrial parks, and transportation systems, like highways, water supply systems, waste disposal sites, and other purposes.

Understand residential construction.

Residential construction includes constructing and maintaining multi-unit homes, condos, townhouses, or condominiums. A residential construction company is usually paid a lump sum after the project completion. Residential building construction has a wide range of tasks, including designing and installing interior finishes like flooring and trim, plumbing fixtures, wiring HVAC circuits and electrical wiring connections within walls, framing exterior walls with insulation panels, and painting interior walls with appropriate colors.

The key difference between commercial and residential construction


Commercial construction is often more prominent and complex than residential construction. Commercial structures are usually built to last longer, resist heavy traffic, and are more affordable than residential homes. Commercial buildings are less likely to offer amenities such as fitness centers or community gardens but provide more open space for events or meetings.

On the contrary, residential buildings are smaller, simpler, and more affordable than commercial ones. They are often smaller than their commercial counterpart. However, residents often enjoy more privacy when doing things around the house. Homeowners often choose this type of living space because it makes it easy for them to travel from one point to the next without making any significant stops.

Permits and codes

Commercial construction codes are stringent. They need higher requirements regarding structural integrity, materials, and building components. They also require safety features like fire escape routes. The standards that municipalities use when assessing applications for building permits can also vary. A residential building may require two inspections before permission is granted to start construction, whereas a commercial building would need more than one inspection during the planning and probably more if it involves modifications.

Funding resources

The cost of commercial construction Etobicoke is generally higher than residential. This cost difference is due to the complexity of commercial projects and their greater need for resources. Additionally, based on the scope and size of the project, they may also require public funding sources like grants, subsidies, or tax breaks. Generally, residential properties are financed using equity, debt financing, or cash flow from rental income. On the contrary, commercial construction receives funding from outside sources like banks and government agencies that provide loans at interest rates based on local laws and regulations. The source of financing is the significant difference between commercial and residential construction. Commercial buildings require large amounts of money upfront. However, developers and property owners with experience in this industry can get financing options like mortgages or bank loans based on their credit scores.


construction equipmentEquipment used for commercial and residential construction also differ. Commercial construction equipment has a higher capacity, is more powerful, and is often heavier than residential equipment. Commercial equipment is designed to handle heavy loads that could weigh higher than a truck’s capacity. Residential building products are designed for more accessible transportation and storage because they need not be as large as their commercial counterparts. They also use comparatively smaller motors that move through tight spaces quickly while still maintaining high speeds in full-load conditions.


There is a big difference in commercial and residential construction timelines. Commercial construction can be more complicated than residential. However, it takes much longer to complete. While a residential contractor often completes a residential project in a few months, commercial projects may take several years. The extended period is because commercial building projects involve various components, like plumbing, electrical wiring, and HVAC systems. These components need to be fixed appropriately before starting any other work.

Additionally, some unexpected issues may interrupt commercial building projects. These issues include leaks in pipes and cracks in walls/ceilings. If not dealt with promptly, such cases can lead to major disasters.

Get the best Etobicoke new construction company

If you’re looking for the best construction company Etobicoke, it’s crucial to find one with skills and experience. Find a well-established company with years of experience in the field.

construction company Etobicoke

You can check out reviews on sites like Houzz and Google Reviews to get an idea of how satisfied their past customers have been. Ask your family and friends who might have hired these businesses in the past. Their opinions may differ from yours but could help narrow your search.

Wrapping up

Both residential and commercial construction are often seen as distinct industries. However, they share many similarities. One of the most significant differences between these two types of projects is that residential construction typically involves less experience or training. Commercial developers generally have experienced professionals with solid backgrounds in the building trades, such as carpentry or masonry. Commercial developers are proficient in all aspects of project management, while residential developers tend to concentrate on one element, such as landscaping and roofing. Different labor laws and tax codes can affect residential and commercial development, making it more difficult for small businesses seeking financing options or new construction opportunities.

If you’re looking for a construction company, choosing one with experience and trustworthiness is essential. You want to ensure your new home or office is built on time and within budget. You’ll also want to ensure that the contractor will be there for you when something goes wrong during the construction or renovation of your house. M Dzaric Construction will evaluate your vision for your new building and use its expertise and knowledge of today’s materials to create something unique yet functional at an affordable price. Subscribe to our website for more construction related topics.

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