Things change in a year. A whole lot more can change in two. But in ten years, your world can feel like an entirely different place.
Your world, and your home.
What may have started out as the perfect home for you and your family – however long ago – can increasingly feel a little tight at the seams as the years pass.
Families grow both in number and in size, careers change, and a handful of other life events can all lead you to the same conclusion: we’re running out of space.
If you’re like many of us, you either didn’t or weren’t able to buy enough home at the time you purchased it. And how could you have? Growth, as we can all attest to, often happens unexpectedly – and unexpectedly fast.
Luckily, outgrowing your home is a very common problem, with some obvious and some not-so-obvious solutions.
But before we get into the solutions – perhaps you’re still unsure if you’re outgrowing your home at all. If so, we’re going to start with a couple signs it might be time for an upsize. And then, we’ll get into the solutions, and share some tips on what to do next.
Sign #1 – More People Than Bedrooms
Think about the relationship between bedrooms and children as a spectrum. In the worst case, one or more children are sleeping in living areas, as rooms are already occupied to capacity. On the other end of the spectrum – in the best case – every child has a room of their own.
Now, it’s perfectly reasonable to disagree with that best case scenario. In some cases, it may be necessary or even preferable to have two children sharing a room. But for the worst case, probably all of us can agree that children sleeping in living rooms is far from ideal.
Fact is, many factors come into play here. The two most relevant are how many children you have, and how old they are. Again, there is a great argument in favor of room sharing, but it has an upper limit. While a five and seven year old may do just fine sharing a room, things are naturally more complicated for a twelve and fourteen year old.
So start by thinking about how many children you have, or how many you intend to have. Then, think about your current arrangement. Does each child at least have a room to share? If so, how soon do you suspect this may turn into a conflict? Depending on your answers to these questions, now or sometime soon might be the time to think about getting more space.
Sign #2 – Can’t Escape the Clutter
Homes that are being outgrown feel almost impossible to keep clean. Even with a lot of effort, it seems they fall from spotless back to messy and cluttered in no time.
This is probably a sign that you need more space. When you have room, you have room for storage. Seasonal, or rarely used items can be kept in the place where they belong: out of sight, and out toe-stubbing range.
If you’re home is feeling perpetually messy, it might not be due to a lack of cleaning. You may simply have more belongings than you have places to keep them.
What to Do Next
If you’re thinking it’s time for an upsize, here are a few things to consider.
In looking for a new home, budget is always a good first place to turn. As you can imagine, more home typically costs more money. So review your current loans, outstanding bills, and whatever financials are necessary, and determine a range for your budget. When you know how much house you can afford, you’re much more equipped to start looking.
Checking on Credit
Assuming you’ll need a mortgage for your upsize, credit is a big factor in establishing your rates, fees, and any additional charges. Before you apply, it’s smart to get an understanding of your credit, and learn what that might mean for your new home buy. At AnnualCreditReport.com, major credit bureaus will provide you a free annual credit report. Otherwise, you can find similar services elsewhere online.
Get With an Agent
With so many moving parts, it can be helpful to consult with a real estate agent for guidance. A good agent can save you a lot of time, stress, and protect you from misinformation and missteps along the way.