Should You Renovate or Move?


Does this sound familiar? You’ve spent years living in your home, and through the changing seasons of life, you’ve begun to notice that your space no longer suits you. Perhaps you’ve added a family member or two, and storage is bursting at the seams. Maybe you’ve been living with the same finishes and decor for a decade (or more), and it’s leaving you uninspired and ready for something new.

Chances are you’ve already compiled a running list of items you’d like to change. But after staring down the reality of significant renovations, I can already hear you thinking, “Staci, wouldn’t it be sooo much easier to just move?” 

Before you rush to hammer that “For Sale” sign into your front yard, remember that renovating and relocating both require time, energy, and a significant investment in both time and money. And while answering the question “Should I stay or should I go?” is personal, here are some things to consider as you make this important decision…

1. Consider Your Current Location

There are certain things you can change about your home, and there are those you can’t.  Location falls into the latter category. Relocating to a new home may result in a larger and more functional space, but it can often come along with many sacrifices.

For example, do you love your neighbours? Or perhaps your children attend a fantastic local school around the corner, and moving would uproot them from friends? If you’re emotionally attached to your current location, staying is often the better choice, as it’s often hard to find a home you’ll love within the same neighbourhood.  

2. Consider Your Investment

Before deciding that your home is a lost cause, consider which option is the better investment for you. Sure, moving may initially seem more manageable and less expensive, but hidden costs add up quickly. If selling is on your mind, you’ll need to account for costs such as:

  • The cost of the new home
  • Realtor commissions
  • Harmonized sales tax
  • Staging costs for your current home
  • Updates needed before selling
  • Lawyer fees
  • Land transfer taxes
  • Moving expenses
  • New window treatments (if you have custom treatments in your existing home they will not fit into a new home)

Sound like a lot? It is. On the other hand, if you’re considering a renovation, your expenses will include professional services (like a designer and a contractor), permits, materials, shipping, furniture, labour, and of course taxes.

Also a large investment, but usually less expensive overall. Even better? Not only are you creating the home of your dreams (without having to move – I hate moving), but you’re massively increasing the value of your current home, so the money spent is typically a better investment than buying new. You can also enlist the help of an interior design professional (like me) to get a clearer picture of your investment and accurate quotes from potential contractors before you begin your renovation so that you know what you’re getting into. No surprises.

3. Consider Your Time

It goes without saying that renovations take time, but if you’re hunting for a home that checks off every item on your list, it can take just as much time – if not more if you’re list is very specific (that would be me)! Even when purchasing a brand-new home, style and function are rarely in alignment with your daily living experience. You may find a home with your dream kitchen, but there might not be a mudroom. Or the bedroom sizes are perfect, but the layout of the house is entirely closed off. 

In these situations, you could be moving and renovating a home. No thanks!

Meanwhile, renovating has often has endless possibilities to create a home with your family’s needs in mind — your life, your priorities, your style, and your daily routine should all be considered. Best of all, you can feel confident that the end result will be exactly what you envisioned…or even better! I can tell you from personal experience, that it feels incredible to have a home that is exactly as you want it.

How to Get a Professional Opinion

I am clearly Team Renovate, but that’s only because I’ve seen the power a renovation can have on even the most tired of spaces. (Need proof? Here’s an incredible Before & After in Mississauga.) However, I also know that one answer isn’t necessarily right for everyone. The best step you can take is to get a professional opinion. 

I highly recommend booking a Design Consultation with me. Together, we can assess your space, discuss your lifestyle, and prioritize your goals. I will be able to help you see the potential in your existing space, gauge the investment, and/or help you identify what to look for in a new home if that is what’s right for you! 

Already know that a renovation is in your future? I can help you there, too! Reach out to us here to discuss your project and see if we’re the right fit.  Oh, and be sure to grab our free guide – 5 Things To Ask Yourself Before Hiring An Interior Designer as well.  

Chat soon!


Staci Edwards and her team provide interior design and decorating services to help you create a home that you truly love. 

Founder of Staci Edwards Interior Design

Staci Edwards

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