Most of us come to a point in our lives when we decide that our current home isn’t quite working.
Perhaps you’ve lived in the same house for ages, and the decor that was once bang on trend is now embarrassingly dated. Maybe your family has outgrown the space. Perhaps you’ve simply fallen out of love with the place you’ve called home for years, or you just love change.
Whatever the reason, if you’re not completely happy in your home, you might be wondering whether to revamp, renovate, or relocate.
Over the years, we’ve done all of the above, most recently moving out of London to build our forever home. Whichever suits you, here’s a handy guide to help you make the right decision for your family.
If your home isn’t quite the haven it once was, you might be thinking of moving or carrying out some renovation work. If you love your home, but it doesn’t work for you anymore, or the decor is drab or old-fashioned, revamping the house is a great idea. If, however, you’re open to change, and you don’t adore your home, relocating may be the answer.
Revamping your home
Human beings are programmed to change their minds, and it’s something I do all of the time!
If you redecorated your house or flat years ago, you don’t need to feel guilty about wishing that it looked shiny and new. Trends come and go, and what was fashionable a few years ago can quickly look tired.
If your decor is dated, or you’re just bored of it but you love everything else about your home, why not consider a mini makeover? It’s relatively easy to spruce up your interiors and create a different aesthetic without spending a fortune or committing every waking hour to painting or tiling.
One of the easiest ways to revamp your home or inject new personality is to alter the colour-ways.
Changing the colours of the walls, creating a statement wall or investing in different accessories to add interest to a neutral space can make all the difference. If you are thinking of switching colours or adding new tones or shades, try samples on the walls first, and think about how you plan to use the room. It’s important to see what paint colours look like in natural light, and to choose shades that set the right tone. In your bedroom, for example, you want to feel calm and relaxed, so opt for muted shades, neutral colours and tones that are proven to promote tranquility. Good examples include pastel blue, white, grey, and beige.
Another great way to freshen up your interiors is to replace old soft furnishings and decorative accessories.
Add rugs to floors, scatter cushions on sofas, armchairs, and beds, update curtains and bed linen, and invest in new plant pots, photo and wall art frames, vases, or storage pots. Simple touches can make a real difference, especially if you have plain walls. You can use accessories to introduce a new palette or theme, for example, graphic lines and greenery in an understated Scandinavian-style bedroom. Keep the walls simple with white paint, and add patterns and vibrancy with plants in printed pots and geometric cushions and throws.
Home renovations are a step up from refreshing the interiors and updating the decor.
Renovating is an excellent option if you love your home, but it’s not quite right on a practical level. If you need more space, for example, but don’t want to move, there may be an alternative. One option is to extend and add either a single-storey or double-storey extension to the side or the back of your house. If you have space available, and don’t mind losing a segment of the garden, this could work for you.
Another possibility is converting a loft or a cellar to create an additional living space. You could also consider modifying the layout of your home to make it work better for you. If you have a separate kitchen and dining room, for example, it may be possible to adjust the layout to create an open-plan kitchen-diner, which would give you more space.
If you are exploring the idea of renovating your home, it’s essential to get a number of quotes from building firms so that you make sure the work will be priced competitively. You’ll also need to check that the plans are viable in terms of planning rules and regulations, and to ensure that the project will add value to the house in the longer term.
Ask some local estate agents to give you an idea of how much value you could add by taking on a renovation project at home. You want to be able to stick to a budget that gives you what you want, but also ensures that you won’t end up out of pocket.
If you’ve run out of space, have fallen out of love with your current home, or need a change of scenery, it may be time to start looking for properties for sale.
Moving can be a time-consuming and stressful process, but it can also open doors and provide opportunities to discover new towns and cities, meet new people and find a home that you adore.
If you’re selling a home in order to buy another property, arrange for some agents to come and visit to give you a valuation and figure out how much you can afford to spend. Once you have a budget, and you know where you want to live, you can tailor your search. Get in touch with local agents to discuss your requirements and preferences, and keep an eye out for new additions to property websites. Be open-minded, and try not to dismiss properties that have potential just because the photographs aren’t brilliant. It’s worth remembering that most houses look very different in the flesh. That was certainly the case with our home!
Before you put your home on the market, get it ready for sale. Make sure every room is clean and tidy, maximise natural light, spruce up the garden and the driveway, and remove personal touches like family photos. Most buyers like to be able to see a property as a blank canvas. Avoid clutter, freshen up paintwork, and add plants and flowers to create a fresh, clean feel.