ren·​o·​vate | \ˈre-nə-ˌvāt \
renovated; renovating

Definition of renovate 

transitive verb

1 : to restore to a former better state (as by cleaning, repairing, or rebuilding)

2 : to restore to life, vigor, or activity : revive the church was renovated by a new ecumenical spirit

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Other Words from renovate

renovation \ ˌre-​nə-​ˈvā-​shən \ noun
renovative \ ˈre-​nə-​ˌvā-​tiv \ adjective
renovator \ ˈre-​nə-​ˌvā-​tər \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for renovate

renew, restore, refresh, renovate, rejuvenate mean to make like new. renew implies a restoration of what had become faded or disintegrated so that it seems like new. efforts to renew the splendor of the old castle restore implies a return to an original state after depletion or loss. restored a fine piece of furniture refresh implies the supplying of something necessary to restore lost strength, animation, or power. a refreshing drink renovate suggests a renewing by cleansing, repairing, or rebuilding. the apartment has been entirely renovated rejuvenate suggests the restoration of youthful vigor, powers, or appearance. the change in jobs rejuvenated her spirits

What Is the Difference Between renovate, renew, and restore?

Renovate, renew, restore, refresh, and rejuvenate all mean to make like new. Renovate (a word ultimately derived from the Latin verb novare, meaning "to make new," itself a descendant of novus, meaning "new") suggests a renewing by cleansing, repairing, or rebuilding. Renew implies a restoration of what had become faded or disintegrated so that it seems like new ("efforts to renew the splendor of the old castle"). Restore suggests a return to an original state after depletion or loss ("restored a piece of furniture"). Refresh implies the supplying of something necessary to restore lost strength, animation, or power ("a refreshing drink"). Rejuvenate suggests the restoration of youthful vigor, powers, or appearance ("she was rejuvenated by her new job").

Examples of renovate in a Sentence

It's an old factory that has been renovated as office space. We renovated the kitchen three years ago.

Recent Examples on the Web

Each has renovated in the last several years, a total investment of almost $500 million that helps counter the image of Cleveland from the 1970s and 1980s as a city in the depths of recession. New York Times, "New Triennial Offers Artists the Canvas of Cleveland," 11 July 2018 The project will include renovating rooms, installing campus Wi-Fi and converting lower levels into office space for Housing and Residence Life staff, according to the university. Libby Solomon,, "Towson Marriott contract ends, student housing renovations begin," 5 July 2018 To date, more than a year after the project was announced, the developer has not fully renovated a single house — although three houses are expected to be finished this summer. Joe Guillen, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit's showcase neighborhood project falls a year behind schedule," 3 July 2018 Delta Air Lines’ first renovated Boeing 777 with suites in business class and a new premium economy cabin flew a route from Detroit to Beijing on Monday. Kelly Yamanouchi, ajc, "Delta’s renovated Boeing 777 takes off with suites on board," 2 July 2018 There are more buildings to renovate, and two more books in the works – even a film project with Virginia Public Media, where O'Connell will take viewers through the doors of this kitchen and inside his magical world. CBS News, "The Inn at Little Washington's recipe for success," 2 July 2018 At the time, the retailer offered customers store credit in exchange for help renovating, painting and revamping its new location. Katherine Peralta, charlotteobserver, "Family-owned Charlotte bookstore files for bankruptcy," 18 June 2018 In 2015, the company renovated its Spencer Theater on UMKC's campus for the first time since 1979. Katie Bernard, kansascity, "After 10 years with KC Rep, artistic director Eric Rosen is leaving for New York," 15 June 2018 Inside, most of the house — originally built in 1998 — was renovated in 2013, giving it an open-concept layout. Emma Kate Fittes, Indianapolis Star, "Hot Property: This $2.2 million Zionsville home is a super-sized Southern Living cottage," 8 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'renovate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of renovate

1535, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for renovate

Latin renovatus, past participle of renovare, from re- + novare to make new, from novus new — more at new

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Last Updated

27 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for renovate

The first known use of renovate was in 1535

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English Language Learners Definition of renovate

: to make changes and repairs to (an old house, building, room, etc.) so that it is back in good condition


ren·​o·​vate | \ˈre-nə-ˌvāt \
renovated; renovating

Kids Definition of renovate

: to put in good condition again The entire house is being renovated.

Other Words from renovate

renovator \ -​ˌvā-​tər \ noun

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