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Remodel or Move? 5 Things Homeowners Should Ask

A beautiful living room that's been remodeledI’m asked all the time by homeowner’s whether they should remodel or move.
Here’s what experts believe are the 5 things homeowners should ask when making the important decision to stay put or move out.

  1. Is your home in your heart?
    You may be surprised to learn that 70% of homeowners in the remodel-or-sell quandary ultimately decide to stay where they are.
    “Think honestly about your relationship with your neighbors and how you feel about your location and the surrounding area,” says Fred Wilson, a principal with Morgante-Wilson Architects in Evanston, Illinois. “If you have a strong connection to the neighborhood and emotional ties to your home, remodeling may be the right answer.”
  1. More room or more rooms?
    Needing more space is one reason many homeowners consider selling. But just consider this: would a smarter layout add one more room without expanding your square footage? Lay out your floor plan with a designer and find out if a less disruptive reconfiguration would make sense for you.
  1. How long will a remodel take?
    A kitchen remodel may take up to six months if new countertops, cabinets, appliances, and floors are included. Longer if ductwork, plumbing or wiring has to be addressed. Remodeling a bathroom usually takes two or three months, while a room addition can take a month or two. If you think it’ll be too difficult to live in a home that’s being remodeled, it’s time to move.
  1. Will you earn back the upfront costs?
    Keep in mind, most home upgrades don’t pay for themselves when it comes to selling. Some remodels can recover up to 90% percent of their costs, but most barely cover half their expenses. Check out an earlier blog of mine that lists 7 remodels that pay homeowners back. Also remember, it usually takes about 7 years to earn back those upfront costs.
  1. Would you be ‘over-improving’?
    Consider if your remodeling plan would “over-improve” your home compared with others on the block. I’ve found that an over-improved home doesn’t sell for as much in its current location as it would in a neighborhood with similar houses. You don’t want to create a McMansion in a neighborhood with small houses. Make sure your remodels make sense in your location!

I hope this list of 5 things homeowners should ask when making the important decision to remodel or move helps you make an educated decision. If you do decide to move to Montecito, Hope Ranch or any of Santa Barbara’s upscale communities, please call me at 805.886.9378 or email me at Cristal@montecito-estate.com. I’ll happily list your home and find you a new place to live at the same time. I’ve been selling real estate in Santa Barbara for more than 25 years and would be delighted to help you with all your real estate needs.

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