Photo by Carol Mitchell

Update: Some people absolutely live for the weekends when they can visit the DIY store and stock up on equipment to make some home improvements, and many people love getting stuck in to a good home remodeling project. But there are plenty of people out there who simply don’t like the inconvenience and upheaval. It’s natural to want to walk into a house and have it already just the way you like it, so deciding to move house is a great way to find a home that suits your changing needs.

Since you are visiting this website, you are probably at least considering remodeling your home. Remodeling is not for everyone. No matter how it is accomplished, two factors are unavoidable: the inconvenience and the decision making. The inconvenience can be as little as not using your kitchen for a day while it is being painted or as much as moving out for six months while some major work is done. For some, any inconvenience is too much so a move may be the better option. Unless you turn your house over to an interior designer and an architect and give them total control, you will also have to make some decisions. The decisions are not simple ones. Unless you have reasonable spatial skills, deciding on what can be done with a room by moving walls, windows, and doors could prove to be a challenge. Even using pictures from magazines or books can help only so much, since changes will have to be made to accommodate your floor plan as well as to meet other requirements. If you don’t like making decisions — if even deciding whether to remodel or move is unpleasant for you — moving may be the better choice.

Also, consider how your family will react to the expense, stress, and inconvenience of a remodel project. All family members should, at a minimum, understand and accept the inconveniences. Remodeling can be a big strain on a marriage, especially if one spouse is heavily involved in the remodeling project and the other spouse hates it. Take time early on to set expectations about what will happen during the remodeling process, what involvement each spouse will have, and what the schedule will be.


One good solution for managing the remodel process as a family team is to allow family members to make decisions about specific aspects of the projects. With hundreds of decisions to be made, there are plenty to go around. Try letting children take the responsibility for deciding on how their rooms will be decorated and where the furniture will be placed. It could be a fun and educational research project for them. They can look at possibilities at the library, in store showrooms, and on the Internet. Perhaps one spouse could concentrate more on the decorating of the rooms while the other focuses on the floor plan design and works with the contractors. Sharing the responsibility with all members of the family can make the job easier for everyone as well as avoid making family members feel left out. Remember to respect the decision of whoever has spent the most time working on the solution or has been assigned the task of making the decision. While others in the family may not agree with the decision, making a family member feel involved and respected is usually more important than which shade of green a room is painted or whether a window is 3 or 4 feet wide.