When to Move

Amanda Harper


How do you know when to move? Here are some tips and points to consider:

Money Matters

Money is often at the forefront of any home decision for obvious reasons: it’s a big financial commitment! But money often plays a bigger part in deciding whether the time is right to make a move. Taking into account all of the costs associated with living and weighing them against your own needs, a move is sometimes what simply makes the most sense.

There are many costs to consider. Aside from a mortgage, you have to consider utilities, taxes, the cost of commuting, relative cost of living, future maintenance, HOAs and so on. On top of that, you’ll need to budget for emergency repairs, furniture, painting, moving fees, closing costs and so much more.

Sometimes, we need a very literal change of scenery to get ourselves out of a rut. Making a move can have a transformative effect on your whole outlook!


It’s Hard to Live In

For many homeowners, their “dream home” turns out to be less dreamy than they initially thought. If you find yourself complaining through everyday tasks, take notice of what’s bugging you. Often, the home’s layout is at fault. Having the washer and dryer down in the basement, for instance, may have seemed like a godsend when you were buying, but the reality of lugging laundry back upstairs may not seem so sweet.

Some complaints about a home are most easily remedied by a renovation. But some issues are dealbreakers. For instance, if you have bad knees, there’s little to be done with a house with countless stairs. And a neighborhood that doesn’t offer you what you want is obviously not something you can renovate your way around.


You Need a Change

Sometimes, we need a very literal change of scenery to get ourselves out of a rut. Making a move can have a transformative effect on your whole outlook! If you feel like you need a major change in your life – especially if you’ve already tried less drastic options to break out of your old routines – then moving may actually be the choice for you.



Having children can completely change the entire landscape of your life. Whether you need more space to accommodate your new additions or you’re looking at schools, parks, playdates and daycare, where you live plays a big role in what your life will look like with kids. And the factors you considered when the kids were wee tots may be wildly different than when they’re entering high school – or even when you’re Empty Nesters.



Interpersonal relationships can sometimes make a move necessary. Whether you’re taking a romantic relationship to the next level by moving in together or you find yourself in a position to care for an aging parent, the people we care for are a big factor in our living situations.


You Found The One

I’m not talking about your romantic partner; I’m talking about your Dream Home. If you’ve come across a house listing that has everything you’ve ever wanted, it’s worth at least considering going for it. 



Does your current home allow you the space and opportunity for growth? This is a more existential question than other considerations, but it’s an important point of reflection. Whether it’s a lack of nearby job opportunities or your home simply doesn’t afford you the space to pursue your passions, your living situation can become a limiting factor in your ability to grow as a person. And sometimes, choosing to stay right where you are is essentially turning down a chance to spread your wings a little.



Sometimes, spacious accommodations can feel like a burden. When you have “too much house” for your needs, all the extra space becomes a revolving door of chores and cost, with little return in satisfaction. If your physical ability or available time to keep up with all those chores has changed, all that extra room can quickly become a source of frustration, guilt and annoyance. It may be time to move into a house that’s better suited to your exact needs.

Downsizing can also save you money in the long run. While the mortgage may not even be much cheaper month-to-month, the costs associated with a smaller home tend to be lower. Homeowners who are deep in their retirement planning will see the potential perks of downsizing, especially when selling your current home could be a financial gain.



If you’re now better-off financially than you were when you bought or rented your current home, the prospect of upgrading your accommodations is no doubt tempting. It’s important that you consider all of the costs that will increase when you move.

When is it the right time to upgrade? For most families, it’s when you realize you’re feeling crowded within your walls. But it may be that your home and lifestyle are no longer in step; if you want to entertain more often, for instance, and your home simply doesn’t offer enough room. Sometimes, it can be more cost-effective to buy a home that meets your needs versus renovating your current living space.


Gut Feeling

Sometimes, you just know in your gut that it’s time to make a move. Listen to your inner voice! While trusting your own instincts can be a little scary, it’s important to believe in yourself.