In My Neighborhood in 94960>Question Details

Craig Thigpen, Home Buyer in San Anselmo, CA

We are in the process of determining whether to upgrade or move. It's a daunting task for 2 working parents!! Any advice appreciated.?

Asked by Craig Thigpen, San Anselmo, CA Thu Aug 1, 2013

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Denise Montalvo’s answer
Hi Craig;
I say if you are happy with your location you should either try to make it work or look for alternatives in your neighborhood. since you have tweens and teens they will appreciate the continuity. A lot depends on what you can afford and which solution is best in terms of costs, time and personal disruptions. I know excellent contractors/architects who could give you an idea of what can be done with your current home and I can also send you listings if I knew your general criteria. You might want to keep in mind that even if you trade up it may not have to be a much larger home due to the fact that your children will leave home (if all goes well) in the next 2-8 years and you may not need too much space. It really should come down to what causes the least amount of stress for all of you and what can be done, i.e., will your town allow an expansion. I'd be happy to help you figure some of this out. 415-640-1850.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 12, 2013
Hello Craig,
That is the big question always... with so many factors to consider. It depends on the goal- more space, simple updating, floor plan issues... The process in San Anselmo can be tough for extensive renovations.

Remodeling is a daunting process for working parents, especially if you have young children. Extensive renovations are not for the inexperienced. Moving could get you to the goal, but maybe not.

I'm happy to have a no obligation chat with you to assist in puzzling it out. Having sold over 500 homes in Marin over 24 years, you can bet the question has come up before. Feel free to call me 722-4842.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Aug 6, 2013

Over our many years as realtors in Marin, we have encountered many clients with that dilemma. There are a lot of factors to weigh. If you upgrade, what is the time frame and the expense? Will you be able to stay in the property while it is being done or will you need to move to a temporary place? What is the current value of your property? With the upgrades, what will the value be? Will you get a good return for the money that you spend plus the inconvenience? Will the upgrade over improve your property for your location/neighborhood? How much would a replacement property that had most of the features that you need cost?

The best thing to do is to gather as much information as possible, and then meet with experienced realtors who you trust will give you good advice. There have been situations where we have advised clients to go forward with their upgrade/remodel because it made sense from a value standpoint. In other situations, we've recommended that our clients do only part of the remodel/upgrade because we felt that the cost of certain parts of the project exceeded the value. There have also been situations where we have recommended that the remodel/upgrade not be done because it would over improve the property for the location/neighborhood.

Let us know if you'd like to meet with us to go over your ideas for your upgrade/remodel. We can then do a market analysis for your current value and another for the value of the iomproved property. We can also research potential replacement properties so that you have all of the facts that you need to make a knowledgeable decision.

Mary Kay & Kathy
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 2, 2013
Thanks for the response! Indeed a lot to think about and information to gather. Best advice is to consult a real estate pro before embarking on any work!
Flag Fri Aug 2, 2013
Hi Craig, Do you basically love your home? There are so many great properties on the market right now....go to some Sunday open houses and see if you find your dream home....interest rates are still at an all time low.....Major remodels can be very stressful for young families...So many pieces to your puzzle...I know some great properties on the market and coming in your neighborhood. Let me know if I can help...

Deborah Rodgers
Bradley Real Estate
cell:415-686-2073 search the web: http://www.Deborah
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 1, 2013
Thanks Deborah. We are starting to look at Open Houses in our area (want to stay in same school district so options are somewhat limited).
Flag Fri Aug 2, 2013
It's always a balancing act...If you move in the same town, typically your expenses will go up. If you move to a town further north, your expenses may go down, however there will be compromises in commutes, access to services you are now relying on, changes in schools, etc.
If you upgrade your existing home, you will increase expenses, and be inconvenienced for as long as it takes to do the build-out.
I think you have to ask yourself, what is best for my family, to stay and upgrade, or to go and move elsewhere.
I personally like the upgrade idea, because our family is very happy in our current location.
How about you? what works best for you?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 1, 2013
We, too, are happy with our location. We've just outgrown our home (one teenager and one tween) and need to figure out adding more space efficiently or moving up.
Flag Fri Aug 2, 2013
Do you like the location of where you live and your neighbors? These are the things you know. If you move you will be new to a neighborhood and can you get what you want in a great location?

Talk with a trusted agent and get an estimate on what you can net to sell and what it will cost to buy what you want to live in. Then talk with your contractor. Once you have the numbers you will be able to know if it makes financial sense.

Then you and your spouse will need to have a talk if you are prepared for the disruption and stress.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 1, 2013
Hi Craig,

Remodeling is a lengthy process. 6 months can turn into 10. Your house will be un a little bit of a disorder. That can cause tension after a long day of work. Home prices have risen and interest rates have dropped. So your house mosts likely worth more. The monthly payment on a home maybe be less than you think. The best way to decide is find out what you can sell your home for, what the new monthly payment would be on your ideal home and your choices of homes now. You may call me direct I can help assess your situation.

Warm regards,

Miguel A Paredes III
Frank Howard Allen Realtors
#1 Market Share Marin
Direct 415-233-3235
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 1, 2013
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