Did you just buy a new house? Are you thinking about remodelling the entire house?
Many buyers forego fixer uppers for move in ready homes. As a result, significant opportunities are left in prime locations.
In competitive markets or a sellers market, savvy consumers gravitate toward these homes that nobody else wants. Why? They can customize the home to their requirements and build equity along the way.
However, if you find yourself in a situation such as a fixer upper Ryan and I recommend that before you redo the whole house, you live in it for a while. However, if there are items such as plumbing, heating, etc that need to be fixed to make your home habitable, then by all means fix those.
Here are a few reasons to hold off on huge home renovations until you’ve had a minute to settle in.
1. The Lay Of The Land (In Your Fixer Upper) Might Change Your Mind
Sometimes, before people move in – they have grandiose visions about the home they would like to build. This may include changing everything. However, your priorities from the time you purchased from the few months you live in the home might change. It’s difficult to know how you and your family will use the house. The current layout might actually be perfect for you.
At the end of the day, it’s this day-to-day experience that will inform your home improvement decisions, instead of early notions of how you want your everyday experience to be.
2. Buying A House Is Hard. Take A Moment to Process
Buying a home is hard. Don’t kid yourself. After looking at homes. Putting in offers. Moving. And connecting + forwarding everything you need to the new home, you might want to take a moment to regroup.
Finances might be different after your new home purchase – this might also affect what you can do to the new house. This is also why we suggested your priorities might change (especially if your finances have).
A home renovation can be yet another big and stressful project, what with all the decisions to make and contractors to deal with. It is hard. It takes a toll on your patience as well as your finances.
Our recommendation: Take a break from the stress of buying your new home… before you jump into
3. Make A Concrete Plan. Set A Budget. Keep It.
No matter what you are renovating. No matter how small the project is – design with care and diligence. And most importantly, set a budget but plan for a 30% increase on the budget you set for miscellaneous fees, problems, etc.
When you are ready to begin start looking for designers, contractors, companies millworks, etc. Be clear on your wants and your needs upfront and be clear on the budget as to make sure everyone is on the same page.
An hour with a well-qualified contractor can uncover opportunities where you least expected them. For instance, even though it may be an added cost now, moving the laundry machines from the garage to the top floor during a larger renovation may save you time and money down the road. However, it may also be a large cost on the budget you were not expecting.
Keep an open mind when it comes to buying a house that needs some improvements. Try not to feel stressed about getting it all done at once. You don’t have to. Your home can be a work in progress…. As long as you keep progressing.
Attempt to live as-is for six months to a year. Take the home for a test drive and see how it runs. You may be surprised at how your perspective and priorities change once you settle in.
As always if you need help buying or selling a home, let us know.
Gregg Bamford and Ryan Bamford