Whether you have a growing family or you just need more room for your hobbies and interests, there will probably come a point in your life when you start to realise that your current property is too small. In a perfect world, this problem is easily rectified by selling up and buying a larger property, but is this necessarily the right move? Or would you be better expanding or renovating what you already own?
Sometimes the decision of whether to move to a bigger home or extend and improve your current residence is made for you. For example, if you live in a basement flat and you need an extra bedroom, there will be no room for any building work, so you will have no choice but to look for a larger home. On the other hand, if you are currently living in a three bedroom, detached home on a large plot, there will be plenty of scope to add an extension or do an attic conversion.
The State of the Property Market
To a certain degree, the state of the property market will affect your decision. If the market is depressed and house prices are stagnant, moving is probably a bad idea because you won’t be able to secure a decent price for your home. In this instance extending is a good idea, the reason being that your property will be worth more and you can build up a decent amount of equity as the market recovers, thus enabling you to look at condos in Montreal (or wherever else you fancy) at a future date.
The Pros and Cons of Extending an Existing Home
Extending a property is never a cheap option. Costs vary but you should expect to pay around £1500 per square metre, plus VAT. On top of the construction costs, there will also be architects fees, planning permission fees, and the cost of adding fixtures and fittings to your new extension. You are also not forced to be given planning permission, especially if your neighbours object.
The Pros and Cons of Moving to a New Home
Moving to a new home is very often better value for money if there is a limit to how much you can increase the value of your current home. There are costs involved in moving, however, including legal fees, estate agent fees, and the cost of buying a more expensive home. You may also struggle to find a suitable property you like, whereas an existing home might be perfect, apart from the fact it isn’t quite big enough.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure you weight up the pros and cons carefully. Always remember that unless you have a huge wad of cash sitting in a bank account, you will need to re-mortgage to release funds to finance the purchase of a new home, but cashing in on your equity in the form of a secured loan to pay for home improvements may be easier to secure.