To Sell or To Remodel??

Ask a financial wizard whether to buy a new house or remodel your current dwelling and she might tell you one thing … ask a realtor and she might tell you another. This realtor went ahead and did what many mid-Peninsula homeowners are doing these days – adding 1,000 square feet to our home. And while I love the finished product, I have been asking myself over the course of the stressful process whether or not it would have been simpler to sell and buy new.

We chose to add two bedrooms and a bathroom to our one-story home and threw in a kitchen reconfiguration with new countertops, new floors throughout, interior and exterior painting along with new stucco, lighting, windows and more.

And it looks amazing! Our builders and architect were supreme, but any project this size definitely takes a toll on a family.  Here are some points to consider before you choose to draw plans and begin a lengthy home addition project.

Money: The financial stress alone is something to deliberate. No amount of planning could prepare us for the fees associated with the project… it seemed at the end of it, we were 10 percent to 20 percent above what we budgeted. And that’s just with the addition alone. Moving fees add up and a rental house around here is going to fetch on the low end $4,500 a month. Then came the need to pour more cement to steady the foundation, which padded the bill even more.

Quality of Life: They say the home is where the heart is, and that certainly rings true when you aren’t in your own. I felt that we were so vulnerable and privy to disaster. Our kids’ calendars were in flux, and we never got a handle on anything. A project like this destroys family organization and makes you feel behind the eight ball much of the time.

Neighborhood Peace: We were worried that the amount of construction debris and noise would upset our neighbors, given the length of construction time. Also, in December, our vacant house was broken into and the burglars stole nearly $20,000 worth of things.

Incompletion: Regardless of when you have your remodel complete, there are still things that linger – an unpainted beam here, a knick over there. It will all be completed at one point, but it’s a bit of a waiting game.

Lot Size: Are you happy with the size of your lot? A home upgrade will not change the footprint of the property in most cases. So be sure that once your dream home is built on your current lot that the size of that lot will continue to provide you with the same joy the inside of your remodeled home will.

Whether you choose to remodel or sell and buy, we can help you think outside of the box and see which one is right for you. Having been through it so recently, I know that Joyce and I can help you assess your needs and render the best decision for you and your family.