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Buy, Add On, Or Build: What To Do When You Out-Grow Your Home

Build vs. Buy The Best Way to Make Room in Your Home

You've grown out of your home, but you're not sure what to do next. When you need a bigger home because you're lacking the space you need, such as more bedrooms, an in-law suite, or a larger kitchen, there are factors to consider. Should you add to your home, build a new custom home, or buy a home that's on the market?

If you're still on the fence about what to do, we can help you decide which option is best with a few insights and questions you can ask yourself to figure out the best option for you and your family. 

Move, Improve, or Build a Custom Home?

First, ask yourself if now is a good time to build a custom home. The answer will depend on if you have the availability to commit to the process of building a home. You'll need to be available for frequent communication, decision-making, and problem-solving for the next several months. The outcome could be well worth the time you'll need to commit if you simply can't find a home on the market that will check off your must-have list or if no amount of remodeling your current home will meet your needs. 


When It's Better to Remodel Rather Than Move

Everyone’s budget, style, life circumstances, and needs are unique. When it comes to deciding whether to remodel, buy, or build, there are a few things to consider as you decide.

Your Neighborhood

An important factor is your neighborhood. You may have become very invested in your community and enjoy the amenities your neighborhood provides. The relationships you and your family have built as well as your proximity to everyday conveniences could be reason enough to stay put. 

Your neighborhood may be within walking distance of your favorite restaurants, bars, grocery store, shops, or parks. Your home might already be in an ideal location for commuting to work and in a school district that you’re not willing to leave. If you love the area you live in or the people you are surrounded by, renovating your home to make more room may be your best option.

The Investment

How much of your home would you like to remodel or add? If you’d like to expand your kitchen, add an extra bathroom, or turn your master into a suite, a remodel is a great way to update your home and feel more comfortable. Maybe you’re dissatisfied with the layout overall and it fails to meet the needs of your daily routine. If this is the case, counting on a remodeling job to make your home work for you could be an unrealistic expectation due to the amount of time needed and the necessary budget to complete the project

Consult with a custom builder to best understand the process you should expect in order to reach your design goals. You’ll also want to consider how improvements will affect the value of your home. Your investment in a remodel could end up costing more time and money than custom building a home that fits your exact needs from the start. After your consultation, you’ll likely have enough information to make a decision. 

The Risk of "Over-Improving"

Even if a good return on investment (ROI) for your remodel project isn’t a high priority compared to the enjoyment you will receive from the extra space, it’s still worth calculating your home’s new value. Another issue to factor into your decision-making is the financial risk of over-improving. Some remodeling projects or additions offer a relatively low ROI, as low as 30%. However, in neighborhoods such as the Historic Heights, average home values are around $540,000 and it’s possible for a remodeled home with premium finishes to exceed $1,000,000. The possible ROI for your remodeling investment will differ depending on your zip code, so be sure to include this concern in your conversation with a custom home builder. 

Example of a Lovely Exterior We Remodeled

When Building a Custom Home Is Better Than Buying a Home

If the overall layout is the problem and you'd need to relocate the kitchen, or you'd prefer the primary, or master, suite to be on the opposite end of the home from the other bedrooms, remodeling may not be realistic.  The next decision with be to purchase land in the Houston area and build a new custom home or to find a house on the market that will suit your needs.

Buying a Home

First, let’s discuss why buying a home is the least ideal option of the three. The most obvious reason is that it wasn’t custom made to your needs. Even when purchasing a newly built home, it’s likely to require some changes. This could be anything from cosmetic, like tilework, flooring, and paint, to more structural changes, like opening up a wall and installing an archway to create an open floor plan or adding on another bedroom and bathroom. 

Buying an older home will require even more work, as many of the finishes will be outdated, the plumbing and wiring could be old and unsafe, or the foundation could be cracked or uneven. More imminent updates might be replacing the HVAC system or making repairs from insect or water damage. In short, buying a home, whether it’s new or older, will take a compromise or a larger investment than you anticipated. 

Building a Custom Home

Even in a city as large as Houston, it can still be difficult to find a home on the market that checks all of your boxes, such as the layout, amount of rooms, location, school zone, and square footage. Also, with a new home, you can be confident that the mechanical systems and appliances will be new and more energy efficient than in older homes or a home built by a developer. The appliances, fixtures, finishes, and layout will all meet your needs and taste. Through the custom home building process, you can choose every aspect of design and function to create the perfect home.


What to Expect When Building a Custom Home

Will You Need to Own Property Before Starting the Process?

With some builders, you won’t even have to own property yet to begin the consultation and design process. Some builders will have a network of real estate agents who are experienced in finding the best property for your future home as well as the perfect location for your family. 

What Is the First Step in Building a Custom Home?

Be sure to look into potential architects' and custom home builders’ online portfolios and design styles before setting up initial interviews. Whichever professional you hire first, ask them for recommendations on the other. An architect who has worked with certain home builders in the past will have an excellent working relationship with that team and your project will benefit from that relationship in saving you time and money. 

Southern Green Builders knows just how important early collaboration between the architect, the builder, and the homeowner is for a successful project. Whether you decide to remodel the home you love or to embark on a fresh start with a custom home, we are committed to delivering a home that fits your family just right, within budget, and on time. To schedule a consultation and discuss your options, contact Southern Green Builders today

Custom Home Guide 1