Have you been scouring the market for your dream home only to be disappointed? As the market continues to tighten it’s not getting any easier, either.
There’s one thing you’re sure of — your current home isn’t it. It checked off most of the boxes when you bought it several years ago, but you weren’t looking for a “dream home” then. That would be your next house, after you’d been in the area for a little while, gotten familiar with the neighborhoods, made some friends and solidified your long-term goals.
You’ve reached that point now, but nothing you’ve looked at is quite what you have in mind. It might be time to take another look at the house you already have and see what can be done to make it your dream home or at least come close enough for you to want to stick around a little longer.
Just ask yourself a few questions.
DO WE REALLY NEED MORE SPACE? Nothing drives people onto the housing market quite as fast as a cluttered home. You’ve maxed out the closets and the collections you love to display for yourself, and others are starting to butt up against each other in the hallways or crowding you out of your bedroom. Your stuff is defying attempts to organize it and becoming a source of stress.
Ask yourself what you can let go of. Are all these possessions necessary, or are you trying to fill a void in your life with them? Would dispensing with some of them give you more room to find new interests or make new social connections? It’s a question worth exploring.
HOW DO WE WANT TO USE OUR HOME? This may be something you’ve never asked because the answer seems so obvious. But think about your daily activities and whether rearranging or refocusing a few things in your current residence might make it a more livable, joyful place for you. If your love of cooking is outgrowing the smallish kitchen where you are now, maybe there’s room to expand it. If you really want a home gym but don’t think there’s any room for one, start thinking creatively or ask a design consultant what might be possible.
CAN SMALL CHANGES MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE? You may not have done much with your current house because you knew you wouldn’t be there forever, or the things you did do were more about resale value than personal preference. What tweaks can you make to your living space to make it more appealing to you? Maybe updating the hardware on the cabinetry to something else just because you like it, or upgrading a couple of the light fixtures with dimmers so you have more control over their intensity? Or if you enter the house from the garage through a disheveled laundry room, try cleaning it up and disguising it the best you can and see how that affects your feelings toward the rest of the house. HOW DOES OUR HOME MAKE US FEEL? Does your house feel like your sanctuary? Would you like to see more of the colors that you really enjoy, or more reminders of your hobbies and interests? Can you put a few of the objects you love on display without creating too much clutter? How about installing a few “smart” appliances and features if you haven’t already so everything can be just how you want it the second you walk in the door? Think about every way you can adjust your home’s atmosphere to make you more comfortable in it.