So Your House Needs Work: Should You Move Or Renovate First?

Today – Should You Move Or Renovate First?

In the UK the housing markets are near-enough frozen across the country as the political issues of the country cause many people to take a little more time thinking about any major life choices that relate directly to their finances. However, the fact of the matter is that if your home has become a place that is too small for your family, or it requires a lot of work then you likely have to take action soon, to better your quality of life.


Should You Move Or Renovate First?

The main choices are to stay put and do nothing, which is not something you can do if you have felt unhappy for a while and know that something needs to change. Or more realistically, to renovate or move house. It is definitely a tough choice that has huge implications so it does require lots of research before any decision is made.

We can’t make that decision for you, but we can give you some useful things to think about to help you make the right choice for you and your family.


So Your House Needs Work: Should You Move Or Renovate First?


What Are The The Benefits Of Renovation?

The thing with renovation is, that it is totally under your control how much it costs you. You could make some small changes, or some big changes, or some huge changes and make those changes work for your needs. The chances are that your renovation will cost you less than the cost of a new home. You can find an excellent break down of renovation costs in this useful Real Homes article.

As well as renovations there is also customisation which is something you near enough have free reign on if you choose to renovate. So this isn’t just a new boiler, rewiring and other more practical changes, but the gorgeous cork floor, new blinds for the conservatory, those stunning internal bifold doors you’ve always wanted. Let’s not forget about soft furnishings too, and a garden makeover. Renovations don’t always have to be the big changes, as the small changes can be just as transformative and you may not have made them yet because you were unsure if you were moving.

Lastly, you get to stay in an area you love and know, with no upheaval for the kids or the pets. No need to quit a job or change schools, which means a lot less stress than moving house.


What Are The Negative Aspects Of Renovating Your Home?

One of the biggest negative aspects of renovation is that the costs may not ‘add up’. So although it might cost you less to renovate, you may find buying a totally new property provides better value. For example, the cost of an extension on your current home to make it a three-bed plus your current homes value is more than the cost of a complete three-bed house elsewhere. Let’s not forget that renovating isn’t actually all that practical for some families.

Living without a kitchen or bathroom or with builders in and out of our house when you have a baby or young kids is nearly impossible compared to doing it when you are alone or in a couple and even then it’s a huge adjustment. With the biggest renovations, you may have to move out and rent for a while which can be very expensive and your budget might not allow it. You can find a really good builds calculator here, and a really good guide on budgeting for home renovations here.


What Are The Benefits Of Moving House?

Maybe you want a fresh start and you want a better neighbourhood, better schools and better prospects, things you can only get by moving to a new area. Maybe you would like a house that already has all the mod cons built in. Many new builds are set up for the modern world with some even including integrated intelligent technology, plus landscaping already done in the garden and improved energy efficiency, leading to lower bills. Moving into a house that is built to much higher standards can be a total breath of fresh air and much easier than trying to bring yours up to standard.


What Are The Negative Aspects Of Moving House?

With the political situation in the UK at the moment freezing the housing market, moving house might be more difficult than usual because of a lack of properties to buy and a lack of buyers for your home. You might have to take less on your house because it is not renovated and let’s not forget that the average cost of moving house as of figures from 2018 is over £10,000 pounds.


Can You Renovate And Move House?

Is it possible you can renovate to the point your house will sell for a good price, enabling you to move faster and get a property elsewhere that you love? Can you get the biggest issue fixed? For example, the kitchen is the most ‘valuable’ room in the house and is worth an average of £5,000 pounds as of 2018 figures. If you renovated the kitchen, then painted up and tiled everywhere else, would your house be sold for an acceptable figure?

If you aren’t renovating to stay you can probably put a much cheaper kitchen in which is more modern, a positive for new owners, but that doesn’t break the bank because you’re not trying to install your perfect kitchen. This kind of compromise could be the perfect option for you if you are very clever about how you budget and how you spend your money.


There is no decision that we can make that doesn’t come with some sort of balance or sacrifice. – Simon Sinek


Moving house, renovating your house, or both, can be an amazing thing to do for the future of your family. Both options can be scary, but both bring you a world of opportunity for a better quality of life. To minimise your fear of making the wrong choices, do your research and get to grips with the financial side of things. Get an honest estimation of everything. The more you know, the more of an informed decision you will make, which is much more likely to result in a really good outcome for the living situation of you and your family.

Should You Move Or Renovate First? is a feature post


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