Go Big and Go Home: 6 Tips for Up-sizing

Buying

Sometimes bigger is better and up-sizing your space can solve a lot of problems for some families. Let's face it, even empty nester's may have adult children creeping back to the nest. Or maybe your parents have moved in with you and you are in need of more space.

According to a new article by Realtor.com, more than 19% of the U.S population lived with multiple generations under one roof.

Realtor.com wrote an article on 6 helpful tips for up-sizing your home with no regrets. You can read about them below:

Go Big and Go Home: 6 Tips for Up-sizing With No Regrets

1. Think critically about your goals

Yes, we get it: You want more space. But have you thought, specifically, about why? Before you look for a new home, make a list of must haves and plan out how you will use the space. This will help you to visualize what you actually need versus what you "want".

Will you use the new large kitchen, media room and additional bedrooms? How long will you need this larger home? In other words, have a plan and find a home that works into it.

2.) Determine whether bigger is truly better

Before beginning your search, consider not just the home's square footage, but also the layout, says Kim Trouten, a Realtor and designer with Allen Tate Realtors in Charlotte, NC.

“What people want and need isn’t necessarily what builders are producing," Trouten explains. "In this very hot market, they’re building the largest houses they can on the smallest possible lots in order to amortize the price, which doesn’t necessarily equal good rooms for families.”

You might think you're getting more space, but if that space isn't useable or feels tight, does it really help you in the long run? “Sometimes, the more bedrooms a home has, the smaller those bedrooms are," Trouten explains. "You don’t always need more rooms; sometimes you need more spacious rooms.”

3. Buy only the space you’ll use

Before you speed forward with your upsizing plan, you should make sure the rooms or features in the larger house will actually be used, Trouten cautions.

An example from the not-too-distant past: “When home theater rooms were all the rage, it was a status thing to have a room with a very expensive system and theater chairs,” she says. “But many of those expensive rooms were barely used. That's not the way most people live."

4. Crunch the numbers

Are you prepared for the real financial burden of upsizing? “It’s not just the sticker price on the house; it’s the long-term costs associated with it," Trouten says. "When you go up (in square footage), you get higher property taxes, higher utilities, and more maintenance.” And acquiring more rooms means shelling out for more furniture, too.

Make sure you can afford to move up without becoming "house poor." You can prevent this sad fate by using online affordability calculators to figure out how far you can stretch your dollar. Or talk with your lender to get the big picture on the costs of your move.

Pro tip: If you call the utility company, you can usually unearth historical data about the energy costs for a particular address year over year. “Really do your research," Mayes says. "You don’t live in the price of a home; you live in the monthly payment and all the associated costs.”

5. Consider the resale value

Upsizing now can mean a tidy profit later if you choose your home and location wisely.

Sure, you might think that once you've found the right size home, you'll stay forever. But you might find yourself downsizing a few years from now. As with any home purchase, look at your potential new place through the eyes of future buyers.

That means doing your research about what home buyers want. And right now, that's flexible space.  Keep the latest buying trends in mind as you scope out listings, and your new home could pay off down the road.

6. More space might mean buying in a different neighborhood

After you’ve predicted the future, don’t forget what you learned from the past: It’s all about the neighborhood.

Perhaps your starter home is in the perfect up-and-coming community—close to the city, public transportation, and your favorite craft brew pub. But having more room to spread out often means spreading farther away from the city center. So make the choice.

Are you willing to move to a different neighborhood—one that might be far from where you live now?

To read more about this and other helpful home tips, check out Realtor.com website.