Every homeowner gets to a point in their life where they need to decide whether to renovate or move. This can be a daunting decision! You see, life changes and so does your living requirements. I have prepared this helpful checklist to help you to navigate through the important thoughts and key points to consider when deciding to remodel or start hunting. Remember, not all decisions are black and white. I am a firm believer that the decision which is most right for you is the way to go, even if it is only 70% right and 30% wrong! If you want to chat about this more in person feel free to pick up the phone and call me! I am always happy to chat. Here we go…

1. Identify what your living needs/wants are for the timeframe that you are considering.

  • Family planning including children and elderly.
  • Current work and future work opportunities and travel costs.
  • Entertainment plans.
  • Current and future pets.
  • Hobbies such as music, sports and art.

Does your current home have any major problems in terms of size, layout of location?

  • Do you have enough bedrooms? Can you create more by dividing large rooms or finishing unused or storage spaces? Is the overall layout workable and you are just wanting a nicer kitchen, bathrooms and interior décor?
  • Consider hiring an architect to discuss the options for adding an addition. It may cost you $10,000-$20,000 in design fees, but this may be your smartest move financially in the end if you can work with your existing home and property.
  • If your home does have major unsurmountable problems, then your choice is clear that you need to move.

If your home does not have any major problems, is your home worth the cost of renovations?

  • Sometimes de-cluttering and finishing a basement is all that is needed to pick up the extra space that is needed for a growing family.
  • Talk with your Realtor about appraisal values for your home in its current state and how much it would be worth after a renovation, you might be surprised with the potential value increase; your Realtor may suggest having a professional appraisal done to help with this analysis.
  • Do you love your neighbourhood and your location? This may be difficult to replace.
  • If you have kids are they enjoying their current schools and proximity to friends?

If moving is your preferred option, there are many things to consider in terms of the property that you are looking for and the costs of selling your current home and buying the new one.

  • Size and layout of new home you require.
  • Location of the new home will greatly impact the price and you can get a lot more house and land for your money if you move just a little bit outside of the urban centers.
  • Furniture changes that will be needed.
  • Real estate commissions, land transfer tax, legal fees, any minor or large changes needed for the new place such as painting, decorating or finishing a basement to create the added space.

There is a terrific website that I recommend you take a look at which can help you to get a better idea of the costs when deciding to renovate or move and it is located at www.remodelormove.com It is always best to be as thorough with your number crunching as possible. Renovations normally always cost 50-100% more than people budget for because of the mentality of “we have already gone this far, so why not”!