Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Should You Sell or Renovate Your Home? {Our Decision}

This has been the topic of discussion more times than I can count in our home.  Have you had it, too? The whole idea of staying in one home and truly investing in it and making it our own versus starting new elsewhere can be seriously stressful to decided. And, I feel like we've lived in limbo for years wondering what to do.

We've recently made the ultimate decision to stay and renovate our 70+ year old, 1,800 square foot home in a city. Here's why...
Of course money would have to be at the top of the list! We were super young when we bought our home and have refinanced a couple of times along the way.  Our monthly payment is low, even with including a home equity loan to cover the costs of a reno. Selling this home and buying something in a more suburban town would seriously set us back financially.
We actually love our neighborhood and our neighbors. Our area is mostly residential, lined with sidewalks and people are always out walking. Plus, we are close to stores and the library. That is a huge plus, especially for me. I grew up in the country and it was always like a 45 minute drive to get places. I've experienced that and I'm totally done with it.
I bet you're wondering about this one. If you know me in real life, than you know my view on the local school system and it is not a good one. So, I have two children, I despise the school system, and we aren't moving? Completely. First of all, there is no guarantee that we would be thrilled with the schools if we moved elsewhere. Both my boys have been homeschooled for years (after a disastrous start in public schools) and this is our unconventional norm. Maybe we will consider a charter or private school once the boys approach high school, but having the ability to homeschool works for our family dynamic and the boys' learning styles.
So, where do we go from here? We are going to keep plugging away at our home. I've done tons of cosmetic changes; painting and decorating. Now, it's time to dig deeper. In a few weeks our bathroom will be completely gutted and  done over. It's in sad, sad shape right now. I will share tons of before pictures and progress pics along the way. For now, here is my inspiration board...
Following the bathroom, will be the kitchen. I painted our cabinets last year to refresh everything, but the reality is that they are in, structurally, horrible condition. The drawers are breaking left and right and are being temporarily held together with duct tape. It's so not pretty. I'm thinking something like this for the space (although I haven't made any definitive plans yet).
Have you ever been in the position to have to make this decision? Please share you experience with me!


  1. Staying in a place you already love has merit. Your inspiration photos are also really nice. Jo @ Let's Face the Music

  2. Oh, how nice. I wish we could do more updates on our bathroom, but hubby says no way. Can't wait to see yours.

  3. Exciting! We chose to stay in our home after seeing that we could have it paid for really quickly. I think there is something to be said for taking a home that isn't the dream home and turning it into your dream home. Love the ideas for the bath and kitchen. We are in the middle of of bath remodel right now and we are using a tile very similar to your hex one. Just love it! xo Kristin

  4. Our old house was feeling too small AND we weren't happy with the location (we spent way too much time in the car). If either the location or the size had been right, I think we would have stuck it out and made it work. Financially, it might have made sense to stay because the payments were low and we were close to having the house paid off. BUT we got a great deal on this one and have a ton of equity here already (which would be more exciting if we were ever planning to sell, but it's still nice to know). Anyway--in your situation, I think we'd definitely stay put: location, location, location and all! Excited to follow along with your renovations!

  5. I so love what you have already done in your home Angela I'm glad you decided to stay! Love your bath and kitchen inspiration!

  6. this will be so fun to follow along! i live in the country and have to say i love it though! but we are only 15 minutes from downtown frederick which is perfect city life for me- still small and charming but packed with great shops and restaurants!

  7. we are currently discussing that now....our children are grown and while we are not empty nesters yet, we will most likely be within the next five years. Our current home is 18 years old and the repairs and updates are creeping up. We have done some things but we have decided to look for a smaller home on all one floor. Looking ahead to the future when possibly we won't be able to "do the stairs" anymore - and while that, hopefully, will be a longtime from now - it will be the home we put our heart and soul into...the home that will take us into the future

    Cheryl @ The Creative Me and My McG

  8. I'm so with you. It's stressful to constantly talk about moving or not. I always wanted to move and then something came in the way.
    I truly can't wait to see all your renos

  9. We are currently having this debate...we built our home 17 years ago but now our family is raised and we have a large 2 story house with a large yard...what to do? It's very emotional to think about selling but we realize this house does not fit our next life stage so we are researching what to do next??? On a side note, we homeschooled our three children through high school...all 3 have graduated college...our youngest just this if you decide to keep them at home for school it will be fine.

  10. The feeling of not knowing if you're staying or moving is so unsettling. I actually have nightmares about having to move (we're military so it's always a possibility). I think just knowing you are staying put will bring you some peace : ]

  11. We had this debate 15 years ago before our youngest started school and my husband said NO. So I told him to get out his checkbook! We did but now our kids are in college and I grew up in the city and want to move back to where I can walk down to the grocery store for dinner stuff, etc. Now even though it's not 45 minutes, you must get in a car to go anywhere. I do like the peace and quiet here but we're both ready. We bought a 110 year old cottage in a small town and we plan to start the drawings and approval process this year to remodel. It's both exciting and sad to change our lives and leave where we raised our family.

  12. We have that debate on a very regular basis. I have move-itis... the rare disease where you just start to ITCH to move :) I love to move. What can I say. We have lived 5 years in our current home and it is the longest I have stayed put in one place during my married life.

    Didn't know you are a fellow homeschooler. Do you blog about what you do for homeschooling? I blog about it about once or twice a year. Would love to read about your experiences...


Thank you so much for stopping by Number Fifty-Three! I look forward to your comments.