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Knowing When to Move on and When to Renovate

tapping boxes

Every year, about 15 percent of Americans pick up all of their things and move.

In some cases, people do it because they get a new job in a new city. In others, they do it because they can afford to buy something nicer. They have all kinds of reasons for moving from one home to another.

But knowing when to move on from a home isn’t always as simple as getting a better job or putting away more money in your bank account. At times, you have to decide between moving to a new home to get what you want and renovating your old one to give yourself what you need.

Take a look at some of the questions you should ask yourself as you try to decide whether to stay or go.

Is My Current Home Large Enough for My Family?

One reason families choose to move is to get access to a larger home. For them, knowing when to move is as simple as doing the math and figuring out that they probably can’t fit three kids and two dogs into a home with just two bedrooms.

If your current home has become too small for your growing family, there are some ways to make it larger. For example, you could do a large-scale renovation job and put an addition on to your home.

However, even with that addition in place, it might not give your family the option to expand any further. In that case, picking up and moving to a new home might make the most sense.

Is It Situated in a Good Location?

Is your home situated in an ideal situation for you and your family?

Maybe it’s in the school district you want your kids to go to. Or maybe it’s in a part of town where property values are on the rise right now.

If the location of your home is just too good to pass up and you know you’re not going to be able to find another home like it in your area, then renovation might be your best choice.

Even if your home doesn’t have the big backyard you want or the third floor you desire, you can renovate it to work a little better for your family and accept the location of it as an invaluable tradeoff.

Can I Give Myself What I Want Through a Renovation?

When trying to decide whether to move or renovate, you should make a list of the things you wish your current home had. That list might look something like this:

  • Another bedroom
  • A larger kitchen
  • A master bathroom
  • A finished basement
  • More closet space

Then, you should go through each item on the list and see if it’s possible for you to give yourself what you want through a renovation project.

If the list starts to get to be too long and it’s clear you would have to spend tens of thousands of dollars renovating to give yourself your dream home, it might be one of the signs it’s time to move away.

Will a Renovation Make My Home More Valuable?

When you complete a renovation job on your home, you want it to increase the value of it right away. You don’t want to spend $50,000 only to find that your home is worth the same as it was before.

Prior to renovating, you should speak with a real estate agent in your area to see how the home improvements you’re planning on doing will affect your home’s value. Even if you plan on living in your home after you renovate, you still want the value to go up.

Consider how your renovations will affect the value. If they won’t have much of an effect at all, you might be better off moving to one of these listings instead.

Is My Family Prepared to Live Through a Renovation?

Going through a large renovation can really take its toll on a family.

So even if you’ve been assured that your renovations will improve the value of your home and give you everything you want, you should still think twice about putting your family through it.

You won’t be able to use certain areas of your home during a renovation. You also will have to live in tighter quarters and not be able to do the things you would normally be able to do.

Make sure you, your spouse, and your kids understand that before a renovation begins.

Are There Better Homes out There on the Market?

If you’re considering renovating your home, you should spend some time looking through real estate listings in your area to see what else is available.

You might find the perfect home that will make you reconsider renovating altogether. You also might find that you’re going to have no choice but to renovate if you want to give yourself the things you want in a home.

Either way, scouring the real estate market is a good way to get a better sense of what’s out there right now. It will get the wheels turning in your head and help you make your final decision.

Can I Afford to Renovate My Home?

At the end of the day, deciding to relocate or stay put might come down to a simple dollars and cents decision.


Renovating your home can be very expensive, and if you don’t have the time and money to do it, you might want to just start over in some place different.

You should really crunch the numbers to see where you stand financially at the moment and how a renovation could impact your bottom line. It could end up making the decision for you.

Knowing When to Move On Can Be Tough

While knowing when to move on is never easy, you’ll probably have to consider it at some point. Most people don’t spend their entire lives living in one home anymore. Instead, they choose to sell their current homes and move to a new one to give themselves and their family a better life.

Check out our blog to read more about renovating homes and buying new ones.