Before buying a house, you would have spent endless hours looking for options, talking to agents, calculating and recalculating your finances, and trying to factor in your current and future needs. However, as years go by there is a possibility that your needs outgrow your home. Maybe you need a bigger house or one with a different architecture. This is the time when most homeowners are faced with a difficult choice – to remodel or relocate. In this article, we will help you ask yourself some pertinent questions which will make the decision-making process simpler.
Question #1. Am I emotionally attached to my house and its surroundings?
It may sound like an irrelevant question because people love their homes. However, think honestly about how you feel about your home, surrounding areas, neighbours, etc. If you have a strong emotional bond with your house or its surroundings, then chances are that you will miss them if you relocate making it very difficult for you to settle anywhere else. In such cases, it is better to remodel your house than moving.
Usually, the first home can hold a lot of emotional significance to people. Also, if you have lived there long enough or have some fond memories of your loved ones in the house, then moving might not be a great idea. In order to take care of your changing needs, you can talk to an architect or an interior designer who can offer ideas that you couldn’t think of.
Question #2. Can I budget efficiently and stick to it?
Emotions aside, remodelling a house is a cost-consuming process. Depending on the number of changes required, you might have to spend thousands to create a living space that meets your requirements. Therefore, it is important to be able to create a budget and stick to it.
Let’s say that you plan a remodelling of your house costing you around Dh 50,000 and the contractor agrees to it. As the work progresses, you decide to use better quality tiles or wood or some other material. This pushes your budget further up making the entire process heavy on your pocket.
Therefore, it is important to be efficient at budgeting and sticking with the plan. If you are not sure about it, get a family member to oversee the work or opt for relocation.
Also Read: The Pros and Cons of Buying Off-plan
Question #3. Do I need ‘more room’ or ‘more rooms’?
Two of the primary reasons behind people looking to remodel or relocate are:
- The need for more rooms in the house due to an increase in the number of people living in it
- The need for more space, probably for kids or elderly people.
If you need more space, then relocating is probably the best option. However, if you need more rooms but not more square feet and do not want to leave the house you love, then remodelling can help. Usually, smart reconfiguration can allow architects/designers to add another room to the house with efficient space management. This will ensure that you can accommodate the additional member in your house without having to go through the expensive and disruptive alternative of relocating.
Question #4. Is relocating the only choice I have?
Sometimes, the problems are beyond repair. For example, you might have troublesome neighbours or a bad neighbourhood for your growing kids or infrastructure that does not cater to your family’s requirements. In such cases, relocating is the only option.
Also, affordability of the mortgage or managing the costs associated with living in the neighbourhood might become too much to handle if you experience a drop in income levels. In such cases too, relocation is a good option.
Question #5. Am I ready to live in a house that is being remodelled?
Depending on the kind of changes planned, remodelling can take a really long time. To give you a simple example, if you plan to remodel your kitchen and get new flooring, countertops, cabinets, etc., then the process can take up to 6 months. During this period, you need to either set up a temporary kitchen elsewhere in the house or make alternate arrangements for food. This is not a very comfortable way of living.
Therefore, you need to think if you are ready to live in a house that is being remodelled. If you have just been promoted or recently married, then maybe you would prefer peaceful living and opt for relocation instead.
Also Read: Cheapest places to rent in Dubai
Question #6. Does remodeling make financial sense?
Remodelling and relocating involve costs. Therefore, it is important to evaluate the return on investment (ROI) before making the decision.
In case of remodelling, think about the ROI for the renovations planned by you. Let’s say that the current sale price of your house is Dh 500,000 and you plan to spend Dh 100,000 on it for renovations which will take around 6 months to complete. If you sell your house after one year, then will you be able to get a higher sale