To Move Or To Modify

Dated: 10/20/2017

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“To move, or to modify?”, that is the question. As families grow and evolve, homeowners might start to wonder if their current home continues to be the best option, or if there’s another house out there that might fit their needs better. That cute little bungalow that a couple bought when they first got together, may not be the best choice for a lifestyle a few years down the road with the birth of children, or the accumulation of possessions. Instead of cozy, and cute, it feels crowded and stressful. These homeowners might start to investigate what’s available through online searches, and contemplate whether a move may be in the future. For many would-be-sellers, what drove them to buy in the first place was the location of their home. Instead of a move, then, they opt to stay put and make some adjustments to their current home. Below, a few issues that might cause a family to move, and a solution to allow them to stay.

It’s often said that “the kitchen is the heart of the home”, where everyone congregates for holidays or house parties, or simply in their day-to-day life. A homeowner who bought their home prior to the 80s may feel as though the kitchen is cut off from the rest of the house, with walls separating it and the dining room and living room, making the kitchen feel small and isolated. Removing a wall between the kitchen and dining room or living room may be a way to create a more open feeling, and allow space for an island or peninsula, which would also mean more counters for work space, and cupboards for storage space.

Another complaint in some smaller homes are that there aren’t enough bathrooms, or that there is no bathroom on the first floor. Not only is it inconvenient to live in, it also makes a home difficult to sell when it comes time for resale. If there is a pantry, closet, or an under-stair space available, that may be the solution; this could be the place to incorporate an additional bathroom, and if it’s already close to existing plumbing, all-the-better.

If the number of bedrooms that you have is an issue, the first thought that a homeowner may have is to add-on, which can sometimes be a costly proposition that might tip the scales in favor of moving. Some might consider, instead, utilizing preexisting square footage in their attic. Whether you’ll need to include a staircase and additional windows in your new space would be part of the thought process, and the payoff could be well worth it.

Do you like where you live? Does your house have “good bones”? What are the zoning requirements in your area? Do renovations make good economic sense? These are questions to consider when faced with a move, or modify, decision. Many homeowners will find that like their changing family, a few changes to their current home is their best choice to meet their family’s evolving needs.

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Melissa and Todd Rolland

Melissa Rolland is a real estate salesperson, accredited home stager and has been a real estate investor for over a decade, helping hundreds of homeowners buy houses, sell houses, and invest in real e....

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