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Top reasons Charlotteans choose home remodeling over buying

When it comes to the choice between building a new home and remodeling an existing house to create the home of their dreams, an increasing number of Charlotteans are opting to undertake a home remodeling project. There are many reasons why that’s the case. Here we’ll look at just a few of the most popular reasons.

The Age of Charlotte Homes

A recent article in Pro Remodeler touched on some surprising statistics. According to the latest data from the American Community Survey, the median age of owner-occupied homes in the United State is 40 years. A little less than half of the owner-occupied homes were built before 1980, and about 35% were built before 1970. While there were nearly 8.3 million new homes built from 2010 to 2021, that number still accounted for just 10% of owner-occupied homes at the time of this report.

Here in Charlotte, the median age of homes is about 27 years old. That does factor in a higher-than-normal new construction rate – 22.6% of homes in the metro area were built since 2009 – as well as the presence of many gorgeous older homes in areas like Dilworth, Cotswold, SouthPark, Waxhaw and Weddington.

Charlotte’s Growth

It’s probably also no surprise to Charlotte residents that a large number of people moving into Charlotte aren’t from around here. An article on Fox News recently noted that Charlotte is a top moving destination. Factors like a lower cost of living than in other major cities, community-oriented atmosphere, safety, overall affordability, and newer age of homes all played into their calculus. In fact, a study by United Van Lines found that out of the top 50 largest metro areas in the country, Charlotte had the highest net in-migration, while a similar study from U-Haul ranked Charlotte 7th in its list of top growing cities.

That growth means that there are fewer new homes available for movers. That makes remodeling a home that is still far newer than one they could find in other areas of the country an affordable and attractive choice. Oftentimes, just a few upgrades such as a kitchen remodel and bathroom remodel can make an older home feel brand new.

Speed of Your Project

For those residents who already are living in an existing home, the competitive home buying market makes staying put make sense. Remodeling projects often have shorter turnaround times than the process of purchasing a new home. Particularly in this climate, buying a new property can involve a lengthy search, stressful negotiations and bidding wars, inspections, and closing procedures. Additionally, a new home may need renovations to meet your family’s needs in the near future. A home remodeling or a home addition project can be completed more efficiently, allowing homeowners to enjoy their upgraded space sooner. This is particularly advantageous for those who need additional space or improved functionality quickly.

Value for Your Charlotte Remodeling Dollars

One of the most prominent advantages of remodeling is its cost-effectiveness compared to buying a new home. When you move, you’ll have expenses as both a seller and buyer. A seller will pay for: home sale preparations and improvements; moving and packing costs; closing commissions, fees, and taxes; and any concessions to buyers. The buyer will, of course, pay for the purchase price of the home as well as lender fees and mortgage costs (generally 0.5% to 1% of the loan); inspection costs of at least $300-$500; appraisal costs of $300-$500; approximately $2,000 in Title services; and insurance, property taxes and HOA fees that can vary widely.

Remodeling allows homeowners to enhance their current living space without these hefty upfront costs associated with purchasing a new home and selling your existing dwelling. This can be particularly advantageous for those who love their current neighborhood and want to avoid the financial strain of relocating.

The Hidden Factor – Your Family

One of the main determinants of whether Charlotte residents are staying in and remodeling their existing homes is family. Carefully consider the impact that a move would have on each of your family members. First, look at the very practical issues that impact your daily quality of life. Determine whether a move would require a change in your children’s schools – and if that change would be positive or negative. Consider how a move would impact both you and your spouse’s commute to work, church and any important or frequently attended activities. Look at property taxes and, if applicable, Homeowners’ Association fees, in the neighborhood you’re considering.

Don’t neglect the importance of strong networks when weighing the pros and cons of a move. If the guys in the neighborhood get together for a much-loved poker game once a week, or the ladies enjoy their Wednesday afternoon socials by the pool, giving up a social structure that you are accustomed to can be stressful. Also think about the institutions that you frequent, such as your church, your gym, the bank you use and the accountant you trust. How would a move impact your ability to maintain these spiritual, social, and business relationships?

Bear in mind that your family’s ability to adapt to change will be different at different points in your life. If you are single or newly married and ready for your next adventure, a move may be an exciting option. If you have children in their early school years who have not yet established solid friendships or committed to extracurricular activities, moving now may be much easier and less demanding than attempting to move halfway through their junior year in high school. If you are nearing retirement, proximity to family and lifelong friends may play a key role both in your happiness and in planning for long-term support.

More Details

We’ve touched on just a few reasons why so many Charlotte residents are turning to remodeling to make their dreams for their home come true. If you would like more detailed information on whether a Charlotte remodeling project is the right choice for your family, consider reading our book, Remodeling and New Construction With No Regrets. It tackles a myriad of issues associated with the decision to undertake a Charlotte home remodel.

Need help determining if now is the right time to start you own Charlotte home remodeling project? Reach out to us at 704.544.0367, Ext. 101 to take the first step or visit for inspiration.

By Gary Palmer
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