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Remodel or Move? How to Choose the Right Option

Remodel or Move? How to Choose the Right Option

Is it better to remodel or move? If your family has outgrown your current home, you might be wondering if it is best to add on extra space with a home addition or to move. Neither option is perfect for every family. There are many reasons why adding on to their home is best for one family while moving is the best option for a different family. Consider some of the reasons people pick one choice over the other.


Create Your Perfect Floor Plan with Custom Features

One of the biggest reasons to consider a home addition or remodeling project is that you can get things your own way. Your dream kitchen, which you always thought would just be a dream, can now become a reality. You can get that large walk-in shower or jetted tub you have always wanted in your master bathroom. Instead of combing the local housing market for the "perfect house" only to find you must pick between a home with a large family room or a house with five bedrooms, your home can have both.

When you remodel your home with a professional contractor rather than move somewhere else, you can decide upon things such as the carpeting in the new bedroom, the tile in the new bathroom, and the size of your new, larger living room. While you are adding to your home, you may also want to improve other parts of your house. This can increase your enjoyment of the home and improve your resale value without adding all the costs and hassle of moving.

Remodeling Compared to Moving

The truth is, moving is not easy. Moreover, buying an existing home usually will not meet all of your expectations, especially if you buy a cookie-cutter house that is so popular these days. Often, it is only after you've moved into the new house that you discover unexpected issues that can include major repairs or a longer commute.

If you need more square footage for your growing family, moving might achieve this goal, but it comes with a cost. First, you'll need to find a real estate agent, then search the local real estate market for possible homes - spending time researching a new school district and neighborhoods with good property value over time. Then you have closing costs, title insurance, real estate agent commissions, and the cost of a local move. While we completely understand why some families decide to move, often we find that homeowners move only because they aren't aware of the possibilities with their current house.

Even if it's a local move, consider other moving-related expenses, including the cost of renting a moving truck or hiring a moving company. Even smaller additional expenses, such as the cost of boxes and packing materials (and your time) should be accounted for.

Additions tend to be better for your long-term satisfaction because you already know your home and do not have to trade one set of issues for another. As long as your existing land will accommodate your design ideas, it often makes more sense to renovate your existing home without a move.

An Emotional Attachment to Your Home and Neighborhood

Whether you have lived in your house for a short time or it has been your home for decades, you likely feel an emotional attachment to your home and neighborhood. Maybe this was your first home after you got married, and there are memories attached to it. Perhaps your next-door neighbors are the greatest neighbors ever. Great school districts, proximity to shopping and other amenities, and closeness to relatives are all valid reasons many homeowners are attached to their homes or neighborhood.

A home addition can be as big as a room or as small as a "bump out;" it really is determined by the goals you have (wants vs. needs) and the design. If building out is a concern, you can consider adding a second-floor addition. If building up is a concern, consider a casita or an ADU

Your Renovation Return on Investment

Even if you are planning a renovation project entirely for your own enjoyment, you should still consider the return on your investment. In most cases, adding on to your home will lead to a notable increase in your home’s resale value. How much depends on the neighborhood. If you are adding on because you have one of the smaller houses on the street, you may notice more value is added once the renovation is complete. On the other hand, if you are trying to make your single-family home a great house to balance out a location that is not in demand, you may not be able to achieve the goal. Keeping your investment in mind will help you determine which route will get you what you want.

An Addition Can Provide More Space

For some people, space is a big factor in whether they add to their home or move to another. Maybe you have a lot of land, and you cannot find another property that provides you with both the indoor and outdoor space your family needs. Even though your home may need to be expanded in some areas, there are probably other rooms that are the perfect size. For example, you have the perfect master suite, or you love your large downstairs family room. If you are unlikely to be able to find these large spaces in another home, you may want to consider adding on to your home rather than moving.

Click here to learn more about space planning.

Land Limitations Don't Necessarily Mean No Remodel

On the opposite side, sometimes adding to your current home is impossible or impractical. Maybe your yard is already small, and a room addition would require sacrificing too much yard space. Maybe the rooms you want to expand are in the front of your home, and adding to the front of your house would take away from your driveway or place your house too close to the road.

Before you dismiss a home addition entirely, consult with an expert remodeling company. Professionals will do their best to make your ideas work within the constraints of the lot and the existing structures on the property. If it simply will not work, you can discuss alternatives. At the least, you will know early on that what you want may not be possible with the home and property you have.

Remodeling Your Existing Home Isn't Too Expensive

To answer the question, "How much does it cost" you need to look at the entire picture. It's not just about how much money it will cost to add on or remodel your home, when comparing remodeling to moving, you also need to factor in how much it will cost to buy a different home (don't forget those moving expenses noted above). Your remodeling company will help you determine a realistic budget for your home addition.

Living in a Construction Zone

There is definitely a cost of living in a construction zone for a few months, but your remodeling firm can help you find ways to navigate that. For starters, they will outline the process and provide you with a detailed schedule to help you understand what will happen each week of your project. They will also prepare you for the rollercoaster of emotions that you may experience throughout the remodeling project.

Remember that it is often the short-term sacrifice for long-term enjoyment that is the primary motivator for taking on a remodeling project.

If you are ready to tackle the home addition you've been dreaming of, drop us a line, and let's get the process started. Even if you are unsure about whether a home addition is right for you, we'd be happy to talk with you about possible challenges associated with a room addition vs. remodeling a new-to-you home.

Get in Touch with Scott Hochuli

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