It may have been your dream home when you first got the keys, but there comes a point in every homeowner’s life when their once-perfect house or apartment starts to feel cramped or unsuitable. This could be because your family has grown, or your lifestyle has changed so that you now work from home, or you have simply accumulated more possessions than you have room for.
Before you start contacting real estate agents and putting your house on the market, though, you could consider some alternatives. After all, moving home can be stressful, disruptive, and costly, so it is not necessarily a process you should engage in if you don’t actually need to.
Here are some alternatives that you could consider if you don’t want to move home altogether.
1. Consider reorganizing or decluttering
It might be that your safe space no longer feels comfortable because of the clutter or the fact that you are now using the available space inefficiently. So, you should start the long and possibly painful process of decluttering and reorganizing each room to make it more fit for purpose.
You could donate the items that you do not need, or better still, sell them on a well-known online auction site and invest the resulting funds into new storage solutions. This can help you maximize your space and create a more functional layout, especially in children’s rooms or other areas where items just seem to accumulate.
2. Don’t forget to utilize outdoor spaces
If you are blessed with any sort of garden or yard area at all, then you can utilize this effectively. For example, if you live somewhere that enjoys plenty of good weather and sunshine, you could create an alfresco dining area to make the most of the daylight and fresh air. You could even opt for an outdoor kitchen as a sizable upgrade to your current BBQ, therefore moving a good part of your family life out of the house.
On the other hand, if you live in a slightly less forgiving climate, you could consider a covered area for outdoor dining. Part of the reason why you might feel cramped in your home might be that it now has to double as a workspace, but having a purpose-built office in the garden can remove that problem. Not only will it give you more space internally, but you will also have a space where you can work without many of the distractions that you currently have to put up with.
3. Opt for a home extension
Of course, one way of creating more space in your home is simply to make it larger. This can kill two birds with one stone as you get to keep the friends and neighbors you have had for the last few years and also get to create a new purpose-built space over one or two storeys. Provided you are in line with local building codes or building regulations, there is almost no end to what is possible if you have the space and the budget.
It could be a massive kitchen extension to include a family and dining area, a home gym, or additional bedrooms for the kids so they don’t have to share anymore. The whole process can seem daunting, so you should take professional advice from companies who specialize in house extensions in St Albans—or wherever it is that you happen to live.
4. Extend up or down
Not everybody, however, will have the space in their backyard to create the type of extension that will make a real difference to their living conditions. In cases like this, you should perhaps consider converting your entire loft space or—if you have one—your basement. These are both ambitious projects that need different plans to succeed.
For loft conversions, you have extra stairways, scaffolding, and work that might involve the removal of your roof to consider. With a basement conversation, you need to look at removing any issues regarding damp and making sure your new space gets enough light.
5. Other options to consider
If none of these plans fit the bill, then you do have some other options that are low-budget and reasonably quick fixes:
- Repurpose a room: you might not use your dining room since you have had kids as they eat in the kitchen under supervision or in front of the TV. You could repurpose this space that might be used twice a year as a playroom that gets used every day and removes a large number of toys from other areas of the house.
- Multiuse spaces: in a similar vein, you might have rooms that are empty most of the day but are full during the evening, such as your lounge. In this situation, you could use this space as a home office during working hours by creating a desk space that flips up when everybody gets home and family time needs to commence.
Both of these might not be ideal, but they could provide an excellent temporary solution that gives you the breathing space that you need to make more coherent long-term plans.