Remodel or move? Here’s the deal.

By: Allison Millar, Contributing Writer
In: Necessary home improvements
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If you’re thinking about a big remodeling project, the thought of moving probably crossed your mind. Is it better to move to a bigger house instead of putting $30,000 to $75,000 into a dream kitchen, a master bedroom suite or the family room and laundry room you need?

The old remodel or move question is tough to answer, but here are 5 things to consider when making this big remodeling decision:

  1. What are the major obstacles with your existing house–lack of space, a bad floor plan, a small yard–and what would it take to fix them? What remodeling projects are a must for you? Also, consider whether a room addition or other big remodeling project is a good investment in your home, says MSN.com. Will it provide a good payback compared with the value of other homes in your neighborhood?
  2. What will the remodeling cost–realistically–and will that solve 95 percent of your concerns with the house? Here’s a good baseline for estimating remodeling costs.
  3. How much will a different house cost–with the kitchen you want or the other features you don’t have now? Take a tour of some houses on the market to get a realistic picture. Remember to add in the moving costs, including the real estate commission for selling your house, moving and packing costs and any furniture or window treatments you might need in the new house.
  4. Do you love the neighborhood and schools? If so than it might be worth staying and creating your dream house. Just make sure the remodeling costs won’t leave you “underwater” in terms of what your house would sell for.
  5. How much disruption can you live with in your current house? If the remodeling projects will take 9 months and involve moving out for part of the time, can you deal with that stress?

The answers to these questions should help with your decision.

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  1. 2 Responses to “Remodel or move? Here’s the deal.”

  2. jamie
    Feb 28, 2011

    Another major factor is can you realistically sell your house right now? for how much and how quick? Market forces are greater than your desire to have a dream kitchen…

  3. Allison Millar
    Mar 1, 2011

    Agreed, although I am seeing houses sell a little more quickly than they have in the past year. Just depends on the market and price point.

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