Renovate or Move – How to Decide

By: Sylvia Smith

Renovate or Move – How to Decide


Should you move or renovate? At some point in our lives, we all struggle with making this decision. Quite often this is a challenging decision to make.

You may feel that up have outgrown your home or it is feeling outdated or it is looking tired. There are many things to consider when making this decision. Is it possible to add more living space, or do you have enough space but your home just feels outdated? Which is the better option renovate or move?

What are your goals? Move or Renovate

Home renovations, dream home, Vaughan homes

  This is a difficult question that can be quite easy to answer if your home is way too small or way too large. If there just isn’t enough space in your current home to add more living space or your backyard is small it may be an easy decision to move. Or if your children have all moved out and you are now empty nesters it may make more sense to downsize. However, if two scenarios aren’t your situation then you need to spend sometime thinking about what you want from your home and if you could possibly economically transform your current home. Spend some time thinking about your goals and what you want and need in a home.

Are you looking for a more modern functional kitchen or updated bathrooms or does your family need way more space because you have a growing family? Spend some time deciding if it makes more sense to renovate your existing home or if it is smatter to buy a new home and save the stress of going through renovations.

Move or Renovate – Here are Some Questions to Consider

1. Do you like where you now live?
Do you love your current neighbourhood. Is the location ideal for you and your family? Is there transportation new and how about the schools in the area for the kids? Are you good friends with the neighbours.

2. Does it make financial sense to renovate and can you afford it?

Renovations can be very expensive particularly now given the shortage of labour and material costs since the pandemic has gone through the roof. Get a few contracts to take a look at your home and give you a sense of what you can and can’t do. Of course, renovating a home you always run into some surprises and it is recommended that you have an extra 25% in your budget for surprises and any additional changes you may want to make during the construction period.

3. Does it make financial sense??

An investment in the form of a renovation can be a great investment down the road. Some small renovations can turn your home into that #dreamhome you always wanted and at the same time increase the desirability and value of your home when it comes to selling. It is a good idea to speak with a realtor to get an understanding of what renovations will positively impact your home's value.

However, be careful with spending too much and making your home the nicest home in your area as you may find you will not eventually get a return on your investment, It is critical to spend the time to gather as much information as you can to assist you in making the right decision for you and your family.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Moving and Renovating

Advantages of Moving:

• You don’t have to live on a construction site – renovations are messy and can be stressful when you are living in the home during the renovations. A major kitchen and bathroom renovation can leave you without a kitchen and bathroom for months.

• Renovating a home may seem like the ideal option but dealing with contractors and delays can get quite stressful as there are always surprises that come up and unexpected expenses that come up.

• You can find a home that is your dream home without having to deal with the months of living in a home that is under construction.

Disadvantages of Moving:

• You may have to leave your neighbourhood that you love in order to find that dream home.

• It may be challenging to find that perfect home. There may not be tons of options in your preferred neighbourhoods.

• Moving is a lot of work.

Advantages of Renovating:

• You can plan and select exactly what you want in your new kitchen or bathroom.

• If you and your kids love your neighbourhood – remodeling does not require adjusting to a new neighbourhood, schools, etc.

• You can avoid the expenses of selling a home and moving and place that money into renovating your home.

Disadvantages of Renovating:

• Renovating a home can be very stressful and a nuisance, particularly when you are still living in the home. Dealing with the mess, not having access to a kitchen or bathroom, delays, construction surprises, dealing with contractors, product and material selections, and of course construction delays. Depending on how large the remodel is you may either have to live in a construction zone or even have to move or live with family.

• You may be shocked at how expensive it is to renovate your home and given the shortages we experienced over the last 2 years there may be a long wait as contractors are quite backed up. The pandemic has dramatically increased the cost of construction materials and there currently is a huge shortage of construction trades.

Spending the time to think through whether to move or renovate is critical for you and your family. Making the right decision is something that shouldn’t be rushed and is very much a personal decision that needs to feel right for your and your specific family’s circumstances.

Wondering what is happening in your locate real estate market reach out to Sylvia Smith. Buy or sell your home, recreational, or investment property within the Greater Toronto Area, Parry Sound, and Muskoka. Sylvia Smith provides a seamless client experience and is committed to making your real estate dreams come true. Combining her passion for real estate, a tenacity for protecting your interests, and providing integrity and client service sets her apart. Reach out if you have any questions or are thinking of buying or selling.