Renovate or Move – How to Solve the “We Need More Space” Challenge in Your Rochester Home

Dave Meir
Published on November 13, 2015

Renovate or Move – How to Solve the “We Need More Space” Challenge in Your Rochester Home

MoveUpHouse

If your house is getting too small for your family you have three options to choose from;

  1. Add on to your existing home.
  2. Move into a bigger home.
  3. Sell one or more children.

My guess is for most people (depending on the day) the third choice is out and your two remaining options both have their benefits and their drawbacks. Read on to find out what you may want to consider before making your decision.

Think About Your Needs

The Renovation Choice

Consider why you feel your home is too small and then decide what your specific needs are. If your current home could meet those needs with a more efficient layout, then a renovation might be the better choice for you.

Think about bedrooms, bathrooms, the kitchen, and shared areas. If you can add space by developing the basement or attic, then maybe you could make it work.

Renovating is a great idea if you really love your home’s location and your yard. If you don’t really care for your location – maybe you’d like to be closer to schools, or shopping or work – then you might want to think about moving.

Keep in mind if you do decide to renovate, zoning ordinances and the building code may limit what you can actually improve upon. Side or rear yard setback requirements may prevent you from building an addition.

And the building code could potentially restrict the type of renovations you do inside your home.

The Move Choice

If you decide to move to a new home, make a list of all the things you love about your current home and all the things you don’t love about it. Hopefully your new home search will enable you to find a home that has everything you loved about your old home – and more – and fewer of the things you didn’t.

Don’t Stress

Whether you decide to renovate or move, you’ll likely encounter stressful situations. Being well prepared and organized can help you avoid the potential pitfalls of the home buying or renovation process.

The Move Choice

If you decide to move, you’ll need to sell your current house and purchase a new one at the same time. Don’t lose focus on selling your existing home because you’re devoting too much time to finding a new one.

Make sure your home is staged appropriately and everything is well maintained so you it’s appealing to potential buyers. Don’t let the challenge of finding a new home impact your ability to sell your current one.

Ensuring your sale and closing dates are compatible is another difficulty you might encounter. If your home sells before your new home is available, you’ll have to find a short-term place to live, and you may need to put your belongings in storage. This shouldn’t be an issue if you foresee it as a possibility. Talk to friends and family to see if you’ll be able to crash in their basement for a couple (few??;-) weeks and find a well-located storage area just in case.

If you purchase a house before your old one sells, you may need to carry two mortgages at the same time. If this is part of your plan, be sure your bank is willing to offer you bridge financing before you make any firm decisions.

To avoid the potential of double mortgage payments just be sure you’re on top of your scheduling and keep an open line of communication with all parties involved to avoid any confusion.

The Renovation Choice

If you decide to renovate, you’re not exactly off the hook for obstacles. Yes you won’t be shacking up with your relatives, but living in a house while it’s being renovated means living in a mess.

You may have to deal with sheetrock dust in your cereal and – if you’re remodeling a kitchen – making dinner on a hotplate in your bedroom. To minimize the hassle discuss ideas for daily clean up with your contractor. Also remember that some days you may have to go without power or water if they need to shut down services to do work.

Finally consider unexpected expenses and potential delays in time. Projects almost always run over budget and over the estimated time frame. The numbers your contractor gives you are likely just an estimate, so plan accordingly.

Financially Speaking

The Renovation Choice

If you decide to renovate, decide how you’ll fund the work before you sign a contract. Again, remember any number your contractor gives you is really just an estimate – the job is almost guaranteed to cost more in the end.

You may not be able to resist picking out expensive fixtures when the time comes, or you might encounter unexpected surprises behind your walls that need repair. Make sure you can afford both the cost of the work plus a large contingency fund.

You’ll also want to consider the resale value of your newly renovated home. If you’re hoping to recoup even some of the cost of your renovation, ensure that you’re not over-improving your home when compared to the other homes in your neighborhood, or even on your street.

If your house has significantly more bedrooms or square footage than the others around it, you may not be able to sell it for significantly more than your neighbor’s homes. You have a lot of money invested in your home; if renovating won’t add to its resale value – enough to validate its resale – consider the move.

The Move Choice

If you decide to move, make sure you can afford the type of new home you want and that you have a realistic idea of what your current home will sell for. Also remember you’re going to need to be pre-approved by your bank for a mortgage before you put an offer in on a new home.

Another expense to consider when moving is the closing costs. Commissions paid to real estate agents, transfer taxes, lawyer’s fees (uncommon but possible), and title insurance are just some of the typical closing costs.

So . . . if you’re looking to increase your living space, remember both moving and renovating can be good options. While both can be stressful, knowing exactly what your requirements are, planning everything carefully and not trying to do more than you can handle, will make your upgrade go as smoothly as possible.

My Recommendation

If you do decide to go the renovation route I suggest you give Pat Eckert a call. I’ve know Pat for some time and he is an honest dependable guy and a great craftsman. And I get didly for referring you;-)

If you decide you want to sell and buy a bigger home . . . . . . . . . . . just look down the page for my contact info.;-)

 

Renovate or Move – How to Solve the “We Need More Space” Challenge in Your Rochester Home

Dave Meir
Published on November 13, 2015

Renovate or Move – How to Solve the “We Need More Space” Challenge in Your Rochester Home

MoveUpHouse

If your house is getting too small for your family you have three options to choose from;

  1. Add on to your existing home.
  2. Move into a bigger home.
  3. Sell one or more children.

My guess is for most people (depending on the day) the third choice is out and your two remaining options both have their benefits and their drawbacks. Read on to find out what you may want to consider before making your decision.

Think About Your Needs

The Renovation Choice

Consider why you feel your home is too small and then decide what your specific needs are. If your current home could meet those needs with a more efficient layout, then a renovation might be the better choice for you.

Think about bedrooms, bathrooms, the kitchen, and shared areas. If you can add space by developing the basement or attic, then maybe you could make it work.

Renovating is a great idea if you really love your home’s location and your yard. If you don’t really care for your location – maybe you’d like to be closer to schools, or shopping or work – then you might want to think about moving.

Keep in mind if you do decide to renovate, zoning ordinances and the building code may limit what you can actually improve upon. Side or rear yard setback requirements may prevent you from building an addition.

And the building code could potentially restrict the type of renovations you do inside your home.

The Move Choice

If you decide to move to a new home, make a list of all the things you love about your current home and all the things you don’t love about it. Hopefully your new home search will enable you to find a home that has everything you loved about your old home – and more – and fewer of the things you didn’t.

Don’t Stress

Whether you decide to renovate or move, you’ll likely encounter stressful situations. Being well prepared and organized can help you avoid the potential pitfalls of the home buying or renovation process.

The Move Choice

If you decide to move, you’ll need to sell your current house and purchase a new one at the same time. Don’t lose focus on selling your existing home because you’re devoting too much time to finding a new one.

Make sure your home is staged appropriately and everything is well maintained so you it’s appealing to potential buyers. Don’t let the challenge of finding a new home impact your ability to sell your current one.

Ensuring your sale and closing dates are compatible is another difficulty you might encounter. If your home sells before your new home is available, you’ll have to find a short-term place to live, and you may need to put your belongings in storage. This shouldn’t be an issue if you foresee it as a possibility. Talk to friends and family to see if you’ll be able to crash in their basement for a couple (few??;-) weeks and find a well-located storage area just in case.

If you purchase a house before your old one sells, you may need to carry two mortgages at the same time. If this is part of your plan, be sure your bank is willing to offer you bridge financing before you make any firm decisions.

To avoid the potential of double mortgage payments just be sure you’re on top of your scheduling and keep an open line of communication with all parties involved to avoid any confusion.

The Renovation Choice

If you decide to renovate, you’re not exactly off the hook for obstacles. Yes you won’t be shacking up with your relatives, but living in a house while it’s being renovated means living in a mess.

You may have to deal with sheetrock dust in your cereal and – if you’re remodeling a kitchen – making dinner on a hotplate in your bedroom. To minimize the hassle discuss ideas for daily clean up with your contractor. Also remember that some days you may have to go without power or water if they need to shut down services to do work.

Finally consider unexpected expenses and potential delays in time. Projects almost always run over budget and over the estimated time frame. The numbers your contractor gives you are likely just an estimate, so plan accordingly.

Financially Speaking

The Renovation Choice

If you decide to renovate, decide how you’ll fund the work before you sign a contract. Again, remember any number your contractor gives you is really just an estimate – the job is almost guaranteed to cost more in the end.

You may not be able to resist picking out expensive fixtures when the time comes, or you might encounter unexpected surprises behind your walls that need repair. Make sure you can afford both the cost of the work plus a large contingency fund.

You’ll also want to consider the resale value of your newly renovated home. If you’re hoping to recoup even some of the cost of your renovation, ensure that you’re not over-improving your home when compared to the other homes in your neighborhood, or even on your street.

If your house has significantly more bedrooms or square footage than the others around it, you may not be able to sell it for significantly more than your neighbor’s homes. You have a lot of money invested in your home; if renovating won’t add to its resale value – enough to validate its resale – consider the move.

The Move Choice

If you decide to move, make sure you can afford the type of new home you want and that you have a realistic idea of what your current home will sell for. Also remember you’re going to need to be pre-approved by your bank for a mortgage before you put an offer in on a new home.

Another expense to consider when moving is the closing costs. Commissions paid to real estate agents, transfer taxes, lawyer’s fees (uncommon but possible), and title insurance are just some of the typical closing costs.

So . . . if you’re looking to increase your living space, remember both moving and renovating can be good options. While both can be stressful, knowing exactly what your requirements are, planning everything carefully and not trying to do more than you can handle, will make your upgrade go as smoothly as possible.

My Recommendation

If you do decide to go the renovation route I suggest you give Pat Eckert a call. I’ve know Pat for some time and he is an honest dependable guy and a great craftsman. And I get didly for referring you;-)

If you decide you want to sell and buy a bigger home . . . . . . . . . . . just look down the page for my contact info.;-)