Renovating

Should you live in your house while you renovate?

It can be tempting to stay in your home when you’re renovating, rather than spending money on rent. But is it really a good idea? Consider the pros and cons before you make a decision.

Advantages of staying in your home
You’ll keep your creature comforts and sleep at the same address, but what are the real advantages of living in the middle of a renovation?

Save money
The expense of moving out of your home while you renovate can be significant. You may also need to rent another property or stay at a hotel. Living in your own house keeps more money in your bank account.

Monitor progress
Being in the middle of your renovation lets you keep a close eye on how it’s going. You can see where progress is being made and where it may be falling behind. This lets you address any issues with your contractor quickly.

Resolve problems
Unexpected issues can arise during a renovation. Perhaps the tiles you selected are no longer available or the painter wants you to double-check the shade for your walls. Being on hand makes it easier for decisions to be made without delays.

Disadvantages of staying in your home
While it’s handy to live in, there are also some disadvantages to staying home while you renovate.

Out goes the routine
It may be challenging to maintain a healthy diet when you can only cook in a microwave for a few months. Washing up in the bathtub may lose its novelty after a few weeks. Little interruptions and inconveniences can quickly add up to a big headache. And if you have a toddler who can’t maintain their usual sleep schedule through all the hammering, you’ll be wanting to check into a hotel before you know it.

Living in the danger zone
Building sites are dangerous, but it’s not always practical to wear a hard hat at home. You may need to take extra care to avoid exposed wires, dropped nails and any tools left lying around. If you have kids, they’ll probably need extra supervision.

The hazards for pets can also be quite serious. Most dogs are scared of loud noises, and may not cope when subjected to constant drilling. Cats on the other hand tend to hide or escape when they’re disturbed, which can make them impossible to find.

Stress and dust
Living in cramped quarters can challenge even the strongest relationships. Your life will be turned upside down, packed in boxes and hidden under a thick layer of dust. If your family is used to a lot of space, sharing a bathroom or bedroom may be stressful.

Adding to the stress is the lack of privacy. It can be difficult to keep calm when you’re constantly letting contractors in and out of your personal space.

Hidden costs
While you may save some money by living in your home, you could be hit with unexpected costs. Contractors sometimes charge a fee if their work schedule is changed. Bringing forward the bathroom reno for your convenience may be more expensive than you’d bargained for.

Renovating your home is exciting. However, whether you decide to live in or not, you may encounter unexpected problems. Contact your mortgage broker for advice on how to make your renovation as simple as possible.