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Is it time to look for a new place? Or should you stay where you are and remodel? It’s an age-old question. Some people are attached to a home where they’ve put down roots and feel a few renos would make their life easier, while others feel their money would be better spent looking for a newer home entirely. Here’s how to decide which option is right for you:

Compare costs. It’s a good idea to speak to a real estate agent and arrange for a home appraisal. This will give you an idea of what your home might fetch on the market. Calculate this against the costs of remodelling, including permits, material and labour.

Calculate the ROI of your renovations. Speak to a contractor to understand how much of your renovations will be reflected upon resale. If it’s not worth it, your efforts might be better spent trying to find a new home. You can, in fact, over-improve for the neighbourhood or building you live in—and that’s not something you want.

Think about what the renovation can solve. A new bathroom might make things easier for a family with young kids, but there are plenty of things that no renovation will solve. This includes bad neighbours, a commute that’s too long, and, in most cases, a house that’s just too small.

Consider what you are attached to in your current home. On the flip side, there are many reasons why it might make more sense to stay right where you are. Maybe you’re in a great school district or can walk to work. Maybe you rely on family that’s nearby, or other activities that are neighbourhood-based.

Think about your timeline. Get a feel for how long it takes homes in your area sell for by speaking with a local agent. This should be fairly straightforward to predict, but renovations are a bit trickier. An estimated reno timeline might end up looking very different depending on what problems you run into.

There’s rarely a right or wrong answer to the age-old move or renovate dilemma. But knowing your options, their potential ROI and what you prioritize in a home can help you make the decision that’s right for you. Speaking to a professional helps, too.

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