Extend or Upsize?

Running out of space in your home and not sure whether to extend or upsize? Both building an extension and moving to a bigger home have their benefits and drawbacks. Here are just a few of the pros and cons to weigh up

The pros of extending

If you love your current home, an extension could allow you to stay put and enjoy what you’ve already got, while adding that extra necessary space. You can design and build the extension to your very own specs, potentially allowing you to sculpt your dream house. Even if you have plans to move some day in the future, an extension can serve as an investment by adding to the value of your home. This could be particularly the case if you choose to add a bedroom or bathroom.

The cons of extending

In order to extend, you need to have available land to build on. You’ll also need to apply for planning permission in most cases – if your planning proposal is rejected, you could find that an extension isn’t a possibility and that you have no choice but to upsize.

Also, while an extension can generally be cheaper than upsizing, the costs can add up if you’re not careful. The average extension costs 40,000 to 55,000 dollars. This doesn’t include architects’ fees, registration and taxes.

The pros of upsizing

Moving to a new house could be a new start. If you’re not keen on your current home for many reasons, then you may find it more beneficial to relocate to a bigger home that has all the features you want rather than investing in multiple renovation projects.

Upsizing could even be cheaper in some cases. If you live somewhere urban, you may find that you’re able to upsize to a bigger house at a cheaper price simply by moving to the suburbs or even relocating to a smaller town. There are lots of ways to reduce the costs of moving such as choosing the right moving company and shopping around for agents and conveyancers.  You may not even need a large mortgage if you’ve paid off most of the loan on your current home.

The cons of upsizing

While there are ways to make upsizing cheap, most people who are planning to move locally will end up spending more when relocating to a larger home. On top of the upfront costs, you could find that running costs such as energy bills and maintenance go up.

Moving home can also be a hassle. While building an extension equally creates a bit of upheaval, you can leave most of the work up to contractors. When moving, you have to do all the packing and sorting yourself. You’ve got to go through the whole buying process and then you’ve got to adjust to your new home. If you’ve already got a lot of stress in your life, you could find that an extension is easier.

The verdict

So, should you upsize or extend? It all boils down to whether you love your current home or not and whether you have the means to upsize or extend (i.e. Can you afford to move? Can you get planning permission to extend?).

 Image by Lorenzo Cafaro from Pixabay

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