Published February 17, 2023
Home Remodeling by Dana Laksman
It’s a question many homeowners find themselves facing at one point or another: to pack up and move, buy or build a new home, or should they simply stay put and undertake a major home remodeling job? While both have their upsides and downsides, remodeling generally is more cost-effective and comes with fewer unknowns, hidden costs, and risks. Most homeowners, given the choice, would rather remodel than conduct an entire move. Moving is an extremely difficult, stressful, and time-consuming event that can completely upend your life as you know it. However, there is certainly a time and place for moving, and it has some advantages over remodeling that can end up making it the right choice in the end. If you’re looking into some major housing changes, this is the first dilemma you should consider before taking any concrete steps forward. Let’s begin by examining two major factors, along with further cost/benefit analyses of each, that will help you make up your mind.
Especially for those with families, it’s not always practical or even possible to simply pack up and move at a moment’s notice. Moving will mean changing mortgage costs, changing school districts, possibly a complete career or job change, and an entirely different commute, among other distinct changes to your life and routine. Before moving, always consider the impact it will have on you, your marriage, and your family, and consider if it is truly the right time to make such a drastic change to your life. In addition, it’s important to consider timing as it relates to the real estate market. It’s not always a good time to buy or sell a house, so always look into market conditions, trends, and analyses before deciding to put your house on the market and buy a different one.
Cost is, usually, the main factor in people’s decision between moving or remodeling. It’s critically important to make sure you sit down and spend a good amount of time drafting a detailed and accurate budget for each decision, comparing the costs and benefits of each, and examining how your savings and bank accounts will be impacted by each choice. Also, it’s important to remember that renovation can have more of an upfront cost that can pay off later, while moving can incur a lot of hidden costs and fees down the line.
Remodeling instead of moving has some definite and obvious benefits. For one thing, your family and life will remain more stable, and no one will experience major changes that can quickly turn out to be negative. Also, remodeling gives you greater flexibility. For those with the budget, almost any change you want can be made to your house - meaning that you can customize to a much greater degree than while moving. When it comes to costs, remodeling is typically cheaper than performing an entire move. If you are only gaining a small amount of equity through moving, the massive costs of closing a real estate deal can easily add up to not being worth it. Remodeling, on the other hand, can easily add a substantial amount of value to your house, and can often even pay for itself.
However, there is a reason that well over ten million people move households every year. Sometimes, moving is just the right decision, and the costs of moving are offset by the benefits you can gain. One of the benefits is you can increase your equity and gain a new investment. When done properly and carefully, a new house can be a smart investment that grows in value. Moving also offers a chance to start a new life, gain new opportunities, and to be able to escape from negative memories or associations holding you back. Additionally, moving can help you avoid the stress and unpleasantness of living for an extended period of time in a house undergoing a major remodeling. While moving provides its own stresses, remodeling and construction going on in your house can also be difficult to deal with. Kitchen remodeling might mean eating out for weeks, while bathroom remodeling jobs mean you might have to shower at a hotel or relative’s house.
Key Takeaway: Don’t Rush Major Decisions
Both moving and home remodeling jobs can be some of the biggest and most important purchases and decisions of your life. Before deciding on either one, always contact a contractor or home renovation specialist, and get an accurate quote and assessment of any potential jobs. Likewise, always talk to real estate agents before deciding on a move. When it comes to major life decisions like this, don’t rush. Always plan ahead, budget carefully, and listen to the experts, as they have experience and knowledge you might not have. For those who follow this advice, no matter what you choose, you will come out ahead, with a happier, more productive, and more united household.
Written by Dana Laksman
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