This past year, we’ve all spent a little more time at home. Office, classroom, movie theatre, gym, yoga studio… our houses are filling more roles than ever before. And for many, there’s just not enough space for all those extra activities. But before you opt to trade your old home in for something bigger, consider whether it’s better to sell… or simply stay and remodel.
Move vs. Remodel: Which is Right for You?
The need-for-more is driving buyer demand in many real estate markets across the nation, and Raleigh is no exception. We’ve seen an unprecedented shortage in the inventory of homes for sale, which has made it increasingly difficult for would-be buyers to find a worthwhile upgrade. Instead, many homeowners are opting to stay in their current homes and remodel, instead of trying to sell and buy a new home.
Curious as to whether renovating might work for you? Here’s how to tell whether you should move or remodel.
Consider the cost of each
Both moving and remodeling will cost you money. When you move, you may have to do some minor repairs or touch-ups to your home. You’ll have to pay a real estate agent, as well as closing costs (on both your old home and new). You’ll also probably incur some moving fees, such as hiring a company or renting a truck. And of course, if you’re upgrading, your new home will likely cost more, too. It can be hard to determine just how much a move will cost before you get started.
Renovations, on the other hand, are often a bit more immediate and predictable. After talking with a few contractors about your project or projects, you should have a pretty good idea of how much you can expect to pay. Remember, though, that the cost of home improvements can quickly add up, especially for larger kitchen or bathroom renovations.
Think about the importance of your location
The decision to move or remodel is obviously not just a financial one. If you’ve lived in your current home for a while, you’ve probably made some attachments to your community or neighborhood. Maybe you have kids who go to school here. Friends down the street. A favorite local hangout or park nearby.
On the flip side, maybe you moved to your community because it was less expensive, but now you find the longer commute a drag. Perhaps you are tired of noise and would prefer a quieter country location. Or maybe you just don’t like your neighbors. Whether or not you love your location can be a big driving factor on whether you opt to stay or go.
Be realistic about how much you’ll need to remodel
Depending on the size of your home and what kind of extra amenities you need, you could be looking at a simple upgrade, or a major remodeling project. If you have the space but want to use it differently, that’s a remodeling project. Turn a spare bedroom into an office or a walk-in closet. Freshen up an outdated bathroom. Finish an attic or a basement for a game room or home theater. These are all doable improvements.
However, if you find yourself in need of more square footage, that could easily become a very expensive renovation that might not be worth the cost. Additions are time- and money-consuming projects that don’t often see a good return on investment. If you feel like you just don’t have the space in your home, then a move might be a better fit than a remodel.
Consider the importance of customizability
One of the biggest advantages to remodeling over moving is customizability. When you renovate, you control the design, the features, the amenities, the styles—everything. You tailor the project to your exact wants, needs, and specifications. Your new kitchen/bathroom/office/gym will be built for you.
If you opt to buy a new home, that won’t be the case, unless you’re designing your own home. You may have to compromise elsewhere to get the new feature you want. You may have to pay more for it. Or you may get it but realize it’s not quite what you want.
All in all, before deciding whether to move or remodel, ask yourself if you’re happy where you’re at, if you think your current home can be easily customized to better fit your needs, and how much you’re willing to spend to get where you need to be.
Still Not Sure? Ask an Expert!
If you’re still on the fence about whether to move or remodel, it might be worth talking to an expert about the scope of your project. A good contractor can help you determine what you’ll need to do to your current home to get it where you want it—and will give you a pricing estimate. Eager to learn more? Contact Raleigh Woodworks today, and let’s talk about what we can do for your home.