Stay in house a few more years or move now?

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kevin99
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Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

I've been trying to figure out how I should approach my problem. I know my the answer to my question is very subjective but I am hoping some Bogleheads insights will help me come to a decision.

My family (wife, me, and two kids) recently moved to a new house (in Jan 2020) that we were expecting to be our forever home. We thought the house met nearly all of our requirements except for needing some repairs and updates that we were okay with as long as we stayed in the house long term.

Well, a few months after moving into the house my wife and I realized that this is definitely not our forever home. In fact, I've been looking for ways to move as soon as possible. We are both very frugal and take our time making financial decisions so we are hesitant to just get up and move with such high real estate transaction costs in NY. We also don't want to disrupt our kids schooling so if we move we'd like for it to be within the same district. We have a good deal on our current mortgage and real-estate is crazy in this area now so it seems like a bad financial move.

House background:
Age: 40
Purchase price: ~450K
Required home repairs: ~70K
Home updates in our original plan: ~50K
Mortgage: 390K @2.875%
Market Value of current home: ~550K
No other debt
Comparable homes in area with less repairs and no updates needed: ~$650K
Assets in retirement and other investment accounts: ~2.4M in 3 fund portfolio
Household Income: ~275K

My question is: Would you continue to stay in this home knowing you have no intention of staying long term? Staying would mean putting in over 70K in repairs and possibly 50K in updates over the next 3-5 years. What questions would you ask yourself before making a decision?
Olemiss540
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Olemiss540 »

Have you run the numbers regarding mortgage costs with either scenario? How much is your new forever home? Why has the house come from forever to need to get out of here ASAP?!

"Forever home" is a myth in my opinion and made to justify overreaching financially. Seems this house is well within your affordability but with rates increasing by double and inventory remaining low I would say it's the worst time to sell. Saveoney on your low cost mortgage and reassess in a couple years with a pocket full of extra money IMO.

Every house is going to look fantastic until you move in. Grass isn't always greener and the devil you know.......
Last edited by Olemiss540 on Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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MathWizard
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by MathWizard »

Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
Last edited by MathWizard on Tue May 10, 2022 2:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Apathizer
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Apathizer »

It might help if you explain why you don't want to stay? I don't like being a homeowner, but I'm single and child-free. I've been in my place about 5 yrs, have paid off most of my mortgage, and plan to sell next year, so it won't be a financial disaster.

To state the obvious, for you to sell so soon would probably be financially disastrous. Even if it's not your ideal home, if it serves most of your needs reasonably well it doesn't make sense to move. Remember, long-term doesn't mean forever. Can you live there a few more years then sell it?
Last edited by Apathizer on Tue May 10, 2022 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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KlingKlang
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by KlingKlang »

Is the only reason you want to move the fact that the required repairs are $20k more than you expected or did you find that you had a poltergeist? You say yourself that this is a bad financial move. On the other hand you have plenty of assets and income to do what you like.
We're wolves
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by We're wolves »

Why is this not your "forever home" anymore? Is it solely due to costs with repairs and updates? You indicate that "staying would mean putting in over 70K in repairs and possibly 50K in updates over the next 3-5 years." But adding that combined amount ($120k) to your original purchase price of $450k is still significantly less than the $650k you indicate comparable houses in the area which do not require such updating are going for. So, unless there are other reasons for wanting to leave, the financials suggest staying is the better decision.
hawkfan55
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by hawkfan55 »

Would you continue to stay in this home knowing you have no intention of staying long term? Staying would mean putting in over 70K in repairs and possibly 50K in updates over the next 3-5 years. What questions would you ask yourself before making a decision?
You purchased the home two years ago knowing that you would need to put $$ into the home to stay long term. What has changed your mind in that you feel you don't want to stay long term?

You have a great interest rate that will surely increase if you were to purchase a new home. You want to stay in the same school district so how do you know that a new home will satisfy your needs? Moving can be stressful for the family.

If you stayed and made the changes, would it increase your home's value so that you would not lose much and make the home more satisfactory for you?

If you do decide to move to a new home, you should be very careful about buying the "right" home for your family and know that it will cost you financially to make the move. With your income, you can do what you want and a decision to move will not be a huge financial hit.

Good luck.
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LittleMaggieMae
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by LittleMaggieMae »

Well, a few months after moving into the house my wife and I realized that this is definitely not our forever home. In fact, I've been looking for ways to move as soon as possible.

Got a Poltergiest or perhaps an unintrusive Ghost? :)
Sorry, I couldn't help myself. (My house came with an unintrusive Ghost. It worked out great. Not sure I could deal with a Poltergiest - although I do have cats (so use to bumps and clunks in the night))

I have nothing useful to add. :(
Topic Author
kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
You got it. The neighborhood isn't really ideal and not something we can change no matter how much we spend. I'm fine with the repairs or updates because in the end it's only money to fix thing up. The real problem is we didn't realize how much heavy traffic runs right buy our house. Trucks start rumbling by at 5am until 11pm. When we went to look at the house it was always in the middle of the day in winter when the traffic was low. We have a great looking back yard but it's extremely noisy and stressful to sit out in the backyard. And it's a bit risky to let our little kids run around in the backyard with such heavy traffic close by.

There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Last edited by kevin99 on Tue May 10, 2022 3:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by ResearchMed »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:14 pm My question is: Would you continue to stay in this home knowing you have no intention of staying long term? Staying would mean putting in over 70K in repairs and possibly 50K in updates over the next 3-5 years. What questions would you ask yourself before making a decision?
You want/need to move quickly? OR... you could do that sometime in the next 3-5+ years?

Many people do not get their "forever house" when they are relatively young, or with children.
Work transfers. Change in family size. Need for an X that just doesn't work in the current house. Etc.

If you are considering doing updates over then next 3-5 years, then is the house a "now-for-the-next-several-years-while-the-children-are-in-school" house, even if it isn't a "forever house"?

That would seem to be the real question.
Many things could happen in the next several years, such that you'd be moving anyway, and then there would have been two moves.

RM
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59Gibson
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by 59Gibson »

You can do what you want..you have over $2M, make 275k/yr and the house is worth more than you paid. I don't see a major problem here, things happen.
Topic Author
kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

LittleMaggieMae wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:43 pm
Well, a few months after moving into the house my wife and I realized that this is definitely not our forever home. In fact, I've been looking for ways to move as soon as possible.

Got a Poltergiest or perhaps an unintrusive Ghost? :)
Sorry, I couldn't help myself. (My house came with an unintrusive Ghost. It worked out great. Not sure I could deal with a Poltergiest - although I do have cats (so use to bumps and clunks in the night))

I have nothing useful to add. :(
No worries. I appreciate the humor :happy .
exodusNH
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by exodusNH »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm
MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Oh. That's unfortunate. They've done studies showing how much this can affect your mental well-being, not to mention the diesel particulates affecting air quality.

It sounds like you have a rational reason to move.
Apathizer
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Apathizer »

59Gibson wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:56 pm You can do what you want..you have over $2M, make 275k/yr and the house is worth more than you paid. I don't see a major problem here, things happen.
Yeah, that's a good point. They have enough money is or at least shouldn't be a major concern. The difference between the purchase and sale price exceeds sales costs, so it won't be a lose. There's no reason to live where you don't want if you have other options.
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Sandi_k
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Sandi_k »

I would move, given your savings and your income. You're not over-buying, and you seem prudent and good with money.

We delayed moving out of our starter home for many years. In retrospect, we should have moved sooner, but we didn't want to re-set our property tax basis. So we stayed in a house we were only "meh" about, to save ~ $4k annually.

We moved in 2011, and a decade later, still love the new home - even though it's dated and has way too much brown. ;)

Follow your heart on this one; having a home that you like and can be relaxed in is a boon. You won't regret it, I think.
Topic Author
kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

exodusNH wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:00 pm
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm
MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Oh. That's unfortunate. They've done studies showing how much this can affect your mental well-being, not to mention the diesel particulates affecting air quality.

It sounds like you have a rational reason to move.
Yup, I never realized how much the constant road noise is affecting my mental-health.
Topic Author
kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

Sandi_k wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:04 pm I would move, given your savings and your income. You're not over-buying, and you seem prudent and good with money.

We delayed moving out of our starter home for many years. In retrospect, we should have moved sooner, but we didn't want to re-set our property tax basis. So we stayed in a house we were only "meh" about, to save ~ $4k annually.

We moved in 2011, and a decade later, still love the new home - even though it's dated and has way too much brown. ;)

Follow your heart on this one; having a home that you like and can be relaxed in is a boon. You won't regret it, I think.
Thanks for the feedback. Exactly as you stated, "having a home that you like and can be relaxed in is a boon". I want to be able to live in a home where I'm comfortable.
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kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

Apathizer wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:24 pm It might help if you explain why you don't want to stay? I don't like being a homeowner, but I'm single and child-free. I've been in my place about 5 yrs, have paid off most of my mortgage, and plan to sell next year, so it won't be a financial disaster.

To state the obvious, for you to sell so soon would probably be financially disastrous. Even if it's not your ideal home, if it serves most of your needs reasonably well it doesn't make sense to move. Remember, long-term doesn't mean forever. Can you live there a few more years then sell it?
If moving wasn't so expensive and stressful we would have been out of the house already. But as you stated I'm also very conscious of the fact that interest rates have doubled since I purchased the house, and it's only been 2 years since we moved in. Maybe the best option is to stay a few more years and keep an eye out of for other houses in the area in the mean time.
runninginvestor
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by runninginvestor »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:09 pm Yup, I never realized how much the constant road noise is affecting my mental-health.
And don't discount the conscious or subconscious mental multi-tasking going on whenever the kids are outside, as you've mentioned that's a concern. That can quietly drain you whether you notice it or not. That kind of stuff is very difficult to get used to. You are fortunate to be in a position of flexibility with your income and assets. I see no harm in keeping your eyes and ears open for a more conducive environment.

As far as the renos/updates, maybe make a priority list. I'd prioritize things that a buyer could negotiate on from an inspection bc it may not be a seller's market if/when you guys decide to move.
mtn biker
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by mtn biker »

Speaking from experience, if you know, you know. Don't stay in a house just to save money, you have plenty of savings and plenty of income. You can make more money, but you can't get back time spent. If this change would hurt you significantly financially then my advice would be different, but you can make the change without a huge impact to your net worth or future prospects.

Also, a house isn't just living space, it's memories. Do you want to look back at the years you spent where you didn't want to be? Taking up head space and effort making repairs that you aren't going to enjoy?

Again, financially it's a bad move to move so soon, but is that move going to get significantly better in the coming years? We just don't know, and in the end you will be fine financially either way.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by ResearchMed »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:09 pm
exodusNH wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:00 pm
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm
MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Oh. That's unfortunate. They've done studies showing how much this can affect your mental well-being, not to mention the diesel particulates affecting air quality.

It sounds like you have a rational reason to move.
Yup, I never realized how much the constant road noise is affecting my mental-health.
Ah... this traffic wasn't mentioned earlier. That CAN be a real problem. It's not just your mental health (or the air quality, depending upon the traffic).

What about your sleep? A good night's sleep is often underrated. Some renovations could possibly fix that, such as if the main interior noise is through windows, etc.
And a good fence could help a lot in terms of child safety.

But it's now sounding like this really isn't working for the "next 3-5 years" after all. Nothing you do to/with the house is going to change the traffic situation, which is having a variety of negative effects on you and your family.

If you *can* make it work, that's one thing.
If you really cannot *and* you can afford to move, then perhaps start looking.
It will be a financial hit, but all of those are trade-offs. This is a big one, but so is the problem you are dealing with.

However, if you move, try not to demand of yourselves that it be to "a forever house", although it could be nice if that's what happens. Focus on the "now" and also on the next general stage of life. IF you can find something that has real possibilities for "forever", that's great (such as a main floor guest suite if one of you can't navigate stairs later, etc.), but if that is decades away, I wouldn't let that "lack" dissuade you from a "great for now and quite a few years", e.g., while the children are still at home. If you can find that, be happy about it. :happy
Not everyone can find/afford something "just right" for a significant time in the future.

RM
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runninginvestor
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by runninginvestor »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:59 pm
LittleMaggieMae wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:43 pm
Well, a few months after moving into the house my wife and I realized that this is definitely not our forever home. In fact, I've been looking for ways to move as soon as possible.

Got a Poltergiest or perhaps an unintrusive Ghost? :)
Sorry, I couldn't help myself. (My house came with an unintrusive Ghost. It worked out great. Not sure I could deal with a Poltergiest - although I do have cats (so use to bumps and clunks in the night))

I have nothing useful to add. :(
No worries. I appreciate the humor :happy .
Old schoolhouse (1800's) turned home came to the market here. They had black and white class photos of some of the years hanging up. We def skipped that one. We've seen enough horror movies to know how that story ends for the family.

Point is though: sometimes you can easily see if a home suits you, sometimes you have to live in it to notice things.
JPM
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by JPM »

Happy wife, happy life is usually so but unhappy wife, unhappy life is true even more often. If your DW wants to move, probably best to eat whatever loss moving costs involve.

There used to be books on what to look for and what to look out for when buying a home. Probably still are such books on Amazon or thru Barnes & Noble. When we were young and knew less than nothing when about to buy our first home, we found wise advice there. Study up on this subject so you can avoid remorse after your next purchase.

Good schools, low street crime, avoidance of flood-proneness with an elevated site, avoidance of fire-prone areas if possible, avoidance of locations on busy thoroughfares (unless operating a professional practice out of the home) are among the considerations I recall discussed. In contemporary US life, reliable electricity and the availability of natural gas are other considerations. If natural gas is unavailable, propane availability (reliability of local suppliers, prospective pipeline issues for example) and adequate storage are other considerations. In some areas, water availability is a big issue.

If you don't spend up on travel, cars, or hobbies then you home will receive the bulk of your discretionary spending.
exodusNH
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by exodusNH »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:09 pm
exodusNH wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:00 pm
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm
MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Oh. That's unfortunate. They've done studies showing how much this can affect your mental well-being, not to mention the diesel particulates affecting air quality.

It sounds like you have a rational reason to move.
Yup, I never realized how much the constant road noise is affecting my mental-health.
One thing you might try in the meantime is getting white noise machines -- like the type used at doctors' offices.

Many years ago, I was at a customer's site. I happened to be meeting the IT contacts at their customer call center. I remarked to one of the guys I was meeting how quiet the place seemed to be even though there were dozens of people on the phone constantly.

He pointed out a bunch of hanging speakers. They put out a constant white noise that wasn't consciously noticeable. He said before they put those in, it was impossible to think.

This doesn't help with the noise outdoors, but might take the edge off inside.

We have a moderately-sized airport "nearby". The jets fly over head a couple of times a day. It can be annoying, but it's not constant.

The jackasses with the motorcycles, though... I'm several blocks off of a main road feeding downtown. OMG. The one reason I hate nice weather in NH...
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JoeRetire
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by JoeRetire »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:14 pmWould you continue to stay in this home knowing you have no intention of staying long term?
Find a home in the same school district that meets your needs.
Look more closely this time so you don't make the same mistake as last time.

Don't stay in a home you don't like.
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bluebirdy
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by bluebirdy »

Sell and move now. You don't like living there. Don't prolong your misery.
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ray.james
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by ray.james »

In this scenario I will keep looking but would not move out.

As interest rates rise, homes that are NOT 100% new/remodeled will begin to stay longer on market. I have seen this in 2018 and 2007. I would keep open on my hunt for the home that optimizes the layout, location, community/schools and personal choices.
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nanciT
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by nanciT »

I had a similar situation 11 years ago, we decided to sell and actually lost a little on the deal because the market had turned but we look back and are very happy we did.
We are in Northern CA and had bought a brand new build with all the upgrades.....it was just the wrong location, road noise was an issue and although the home was beautiful we sold it.

We carefully picked the property and size of lot in our "dream" location but the house was a fixer. It has taken alot of work but the peace and quiet is priceless. It's taken us a long time to get the property to where we want it and we are here to stay.

Ours choice to move was the right one for us!
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kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

Wow, it looks like a lot of you have run into a similar situation and were much happier moving to a new home.
aghusker
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by aghusker »

Sell now.
Rent for 1 year to research and wait for recession/bubble/inflation to stabilize.
Reassess in 1 yr to rent or buy.
Repeat.
Topic Author
kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

JPM wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:33 pm Happy wife, happy life is usually so but unhappy wife, unhappy life is true even more often. If your DW wants to move, probably best to eat whatever loss moving costs involve.

There used to be books on what to look for and what to look out for when buying a home. Probably still are such books on Amazon or thru Barnes & Noble. When we were young and knew less than nothing when about to buy our first home, we found wise advice there. Study up on this subject so you can avoid remorse after your next purchase.

Good schools, low street crime, avoidance of flood-proneness with an elevated site, avoidance of fire-prone areas if possible, avoidance of locations on busy thoroughfares (unless operating a professional practice out of the home) are among the considerations I recall discussed. In contemporary US life, reliable electricity and the availability of natural gas are other considerations. If natural gas is unavailable, propane availability (reliability of local suppliers, prospective pipeline issues for example) and adequate storage are other considerations. In some areas, water availability is a big issue.

If you don't spend up on travel, cars, or hobbies then you home will receive the bulk of your discretionary spending.
Thanks for the pointers. We thought we had everything covered, even the good drainage and optimal house orientation for solar...etc, and we even talked about not living near a busy road, but somehow we overlooked living off a small farm road that connects two main commercial areas. I guess you live and learn.
Topic Author
kevin99
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by kevin99 »

exodusNH wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:36 pm
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:09 pm
exodusNH wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:00 pm
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm
MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Oh. That's unfortunate. They've done studies showing how much this can affect your mental well-being, not to mention the diesel particulates affecting air quality.

It sounds like you have a rational reason to move.
Yup, I never realized how much the constant road noise is affecting my mental-health.
One thing you might try in the meantime is getting white noise machines -- like the type used at doctors' offices.

Many years ago, I was at a customer's site. I happened to be meeting the IT contacts at their customer call center. I remarked to one of the guys I was meeting how quiet the place seemed to be even though there were dozens of people on the phone constantly.

He pointed out a bunch of hanging speakers. They put out a constant white noise that wasn't consciously noticeable. He said before they put those in, it was impossible to think.

This doesn't help with the noise outdoors, but might take the edge off inside.

We have a moderately-sized airport "nearby". The jets fly over head a couple of times a day. It can be annoying, but it's not constant.

The jackasses with the motorcycles, though... I'm several blocks off of a main road feeding downtown. OMG. The one reason I hate nice weather in NH...
Thanks for the tips. We have a white noise machines in all the bedrooms and they definitely help. I'm with you on the motorcycles too. I used to look forward to nice weather until I moved to this house.
makingmistakes
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by makingmistakes »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm
MathWizard wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm Can you say what changed in just 2 years?

Is it a neighborhood issue?
For $200K, you can do a lot of improvements, but you can't change the neighborhood.
Commute can be another problem that you did not think was going to be a problem,
with fully remote people being pulled back into the office.

Think about what you would do differently in buying the next house, so you don't
want to move from that house in 2 years.

I bought a fixer-upper and put about 40% above the purchase price into it, in addition
to a lot of sweat equity. I ought it because it was next to an elementary school, but the
kids are well out of college now. I still live in it, but we will likely need to move within
10 years due to mobility issues, and lots of stairs. (Why did they ever build house that
you need to climb half a flight of stairs to get into your house? :oops: )
30 years in a house is a pretty good stretch.
You got it. The neighborhood isn't really ideal and not something we can change no matter how much we spend. I'm fine with the repairs or updates because in the end it's only money to fix thing up. The real problem is we didn't realize how much heavy traffic runs right buy our house. Trucks start rumbling by at 5am until 11pm. When we went to look at the house it was always in the middle of the day in winter when the traffic was low. We have a great looking back yard but it's extremely noisy and stressful to sit out in the backyard. And it's a bit risky to let our little kids run around in the backyard with such heavy traffic close by.

There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
Been there. Moved (took a loss) and no regrets. Your sanity and peace of mind is worth it to move. For next place, check out howloud.com
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220volt
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by 220volt »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 3:17 pm
Apathizer wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:24 pm It might help if you explain why you don't want to stay? I don't like being a homeowner, but I'm single and child-free. I've been in my place about 5 yrs, have paid off most of my mortgage, and plan to sell next year, so it won't be a financial disaster.

To state the obvious, for you to sell so soon would probably be financially disastrous. Even if it's not your ideal home, if it serves most of your needs reasonably well it doesn't make sense to move. Remember, long-term doesn't mean forever. Can you live there a few more years then sell it?
If moving wasn't so expensive and stressful we would have been out of the house already. But as you stated I'm also very conscious of the fact that interest rates have doubled since I purchased the house, and it's only been 2 years since we moved in. Maybe the best option is to stay a few more years and keep an eye out of for other houses in the area in the mean time.
We were in the exact same situation, but 15 years later we are still in the same (paid off) house with lots of disposable income and ability to travel and go out a lot. I still hate our neighborhood or suburbs in general, but as many have said happy wife = happy life so I had to accommodate or I would have taken a loss at the beginning and would be out of there in a second.
So from a financial stand point moving would be a mess, especially knowing you will be paying a lot higher interest rate for a more expensive house for a looong time. But if both of you are 100% in, then I would move. No brainer. If one of you is not sure, then it's a different story.
"If I had only followed the advice of financial analysts in 2008, I'd have a million dollars today, provided I started with a hundred million dollars" - Jon Stewart
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Elsebet
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Elsebet »

kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:50 pm You got it. The neighborhood isn't really ideal and not something we can change no matter how much we spend. I'm fine with the repairs or updates because in the end it's only money to fix thing up. The real problem is we didn't realize how much heavy traffic runs right buy our house. Trucks start rumbling by at 5am until 11pm. When we went to look at the house it was always in the middle of the day in winter when the traffic was low. We have a great looking back yard but it's extremely noisy and stressful to sit out in the backyard. And it's a bit risky to let our little kids run around in the backyard with such heavy traffic close by.

There are also a few other issues we have with the layout of the house but they are minor compared to the traffic and noise.
I can empathize, our home in WA was on a noisy busy road with trucks coming up and down it all hours of the day. We were in a river valley so the sound started way up the road before our home and continued even after the vehicle had passed. It was dangerous to walk on the road due to the amount of 45mph traffic on it daily. We had no choice though, it was the only affordable home we could find back in 2013. Our current home in PA is on a quiet road with few other houses and it makes a huge difference in enjoyment of the home and property. We can walk on the roads around our home now due to very little (low speed) traffic. I hope to never live on a noisy road ever again.

The one thing I recall very distinctly is that the few times when the road was closed due to snow/accident/repairs, we'd actually notice how quiet it was and remark on how amazing that fleeting moment was and lament its passing.
"...the man who adapts himself to his slender means and makes himself wealthy on a little sum, is the truly rich man..." ~Seneca
Wenonah
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Wenonah »

I vote move somewhere with less traffic and a peaceful yard. You will love having a place where your kids can ride their bikes down the street or to school or walk to friend's houses. It's not horrible to move after two years--it just didn't work out and you have the means to do so, so as someone said earlier why prolong the agony?
Boulder92
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Boulder92 »

viewtopic.php?t=319787

This thread has some great suggestions on how to find a new place to live, I look at it often when I think about moving.
Ron
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Ron »

Olemiss540 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:21 pm"Forever home" is a myth in my opinion and made to justify overreaching financially.
I would agree.

We've lived in four different homes in the same area for more than 50 years, getting increasing square footage and cost/value along the way as we could afford it, along with the increasing value of the existing home we were currently living in which equity would be used for the upgrade.

Unless you are born rich (or have rich relatives that want to give you a step up) few could afford a home with all the features/conveniences from the get-go.

Just my opinion...

- Ron
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Watty
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Re: Stay in house a few more years or move now?

Post by Watty »

One huge advantage of moving now is that most real estate markets are still hot and there is a not a lot of house inventory. This means prospective buyers will not be as picky about a house that has "issues" and it sounds like in addition to the road noise and traffic the house needs both repairs and updates because it is dated.

In this market there is likely no need to do a lot of repairs before you put the house up for sale if you price it right but you should ask a real estate agent about that.

Trying to sell a house with those issues in a bad housing market could be very hard and take a very long time. Those issues also would likely make the house a bad choice to keep as a rental property.

If your area is growing then it is likely that the traffic on the road will only get worse as the area is built up.

One thing I have seen happen is that when traffic gets worse they may widen the roads so you may be forced to sell 10 feet of your front yard. It happened long before I moved here but in my subdivision there is one side where a road was widened and about 8 houses on that side had back yards that were on that street so they were forced to sell off about a third of their back yard and now they back up to a four lane road. I don't have a clue what the finances for that were like but those houses are very undesirable now.
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:14 pm Assets in retirement and other investment accounts: ~2.4M in 3 fund portfolio
Household Income: ~275K
If money was tight then moving might be harder to justify but moving to a better house would be pretty much a no-brainer choice for me if I was in your situation.

I would do that ASAP before the housing market cools off in your area. I do not have a crystal ball but my gut feel is that if interest rates keep going up that could happen a lot quicker than most people realize. It would be hard to do with a family but if I was in your situation I would try to have the house sold by the 4th of July even if that means that you need to move to some temporary housing until you can buy and move into your next house. You will likely have to pay a premium for your next house because of the housing market but you can afford that and 20 years from now that will not matter as long as it is a good house for you.
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:14 pm Comparable homes in area with less repairs and no updates needed: ~$650K
Since you can afford it be sure to have the repairs done as soon at you get the house and if possible before you move in if they are intrusive.

One of the mistakes you made with this house was not getting the repairs done right away when you bought the house.

Remodeling is a bit different since it is not urgent and you might want to live in the house for a while to figure out what you want before you remodel the house.
kevin99 wrote: Tue May 10, 2022 2:14 pm What questions would you ask yourself before making a decision?
One thing I have always done when house hunting was that when I found a house that I was interested in then I would go back to that neighborhood at different times of day and park my car and walk around the neighborhood. I would also talk to people that were out walking their dogs or working in their yard about the neighborhood and they will tell you all sorts of things that you might not think to ask.
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