As you look around your house, you know there are improvements to be made. Maybe you’ve realized you want a kitchen that’s a bit more modern. Maybe you’re thinking about adding an addition to give you more space. Renovations can help turn your drab home into something you love.

However, it’s important to thoroughly research your options before you take the plunge. Renovations are often an expensive hassle. You may find that buying a new home is the better choice for your family.

You May Not Be Able to Make the Changes You Want

Before you pull out the sledgehammer, you need to speak with a licensed contractor to see if the changes you want to make are even possible. For instance, finishing the basement can be a great way to increase your home’s square footage, or help with your mortgage payment by turning it into a suite. However, many older homes won’t meet today’s building codes for a legal basement suite.

Additionally, the placement of load-bearing walls or beams in your current home may make it impossible to alter the floor plan. If you can’t make the changes you want in your home, you have to either learn to live with it or get something new.

You’ll Be Living In a Construction Zone

Most renovations take at least a few days to complete, and some might take a few weeks. And these are best-case scenario timelines. During this time, it can be difficult to live in your home. There will probably be drywall and/or sawdust everywhere: it’s not likely to be completely confined to the space you’re renovating. If you usually work from home or have small children around, you may need to make plans to be somewhere else while doing renovations. This is a big inconvenience.

You Might Be Surprised by the Costs

A fresh coat of paint or some new light fixtures can instantly change the feeling of the space, and they don’t generally cost a lot of money. However, if you’re taking on a big renovation project, you’re probably going to spend a lot more. The average cost of a kitchen remodel is around $25,000, but HGTV states that an upscale remodel can cost over $80,000. Adding that kind of money to your mortgage could put your loans at an amount that would be close to buying a new — and better overall — home.

You Probably Won’t Recoup Costs if You Sell

People often justify the costs of their renovations by assuming these changes will increase the value of the home. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case. In fact, the changes you make could actually make your house harder to sell if you make changes that are outside of the norm in your neighbourhood.

The other concern with recouping renovation costs is that the market in your neighbourhood may not be able to hold up to the work that’s been done. Basically, your house is worth more, but you’ve priced yourself out of your neighbourhood because the upgrades you’ve made are better than the other homes in your area.

If you’re going to stay in your home forever, this may not be a concern. It’s important to have a home that you love. If you’re thinking about selling in the future, though, you need to be more pragmatic. A real estate agent can help you understand whether the changes you want to make are a good choice or not.

You Can’t Change Your Home’s Location

There’s a lot you can change about the interior of your home, but the one thing that’s impossible to change is the home’s location. Often, this is what really makes a difference in a person’s happiness with their home. People want good schools for their kids, an easy commute, and convenient access to a variety of amenities. If your home doesn’t have those things, changing the way the inside looks isn’t going to make a huge difference. You’ll probably be better off buying a new home in a different location.

However, the flip side is also true. If your home is in the perfect location for your family, it’s better to do what you can to make the interior of your home fit your needs. You won’t be happy with the perfect home in a different location.

You Should Compare the Cost of Purchasing a New Home

Ultimately, it’s just smart to think about how much it will cost to renovate your home and whether that cost is a smart move in the grand scheme of things. Talk to a home builder to find out how much it would cost to build the home of your dreams in a great location. You may find that buying a new home is the better choice, especially if you’re able to get things like additional upgrades, a better commute, or energy savings for around the same cost.

Renovating a home is a smart move for those who want to make small changes to the appearance of their homes. However, anyone thinking about making major changes should consider whether the cost and hassle is really worth it. Buying a new home sometimes makes more sense.

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