The day you realise you’ve outgrown your family home is always guaranteed to be a little bittersweet. Your kids are growing up and may be asking for a little more space. And even if the young ones aren’t entirely connected to the walls of your first family home, it can be difficult for parents to wrap their heads around the thought of scrubbing growth charts off the walls or repainting their kids’ rooms to prepare the house for sale.
But upsizing is truthfully a fairly common milestone for many Aussie families, so it definitely pays to prepare yourself – especially if you’ve just introduced a new baby into the family home and now have more kids than you do bedrooms.
This guide is here to offer new parents a little support and direction when it comes to upsizing their family home with a newborn or a baby on the way. Read on to learn all you need to know about finding a new abode to fit your growing family.
Sort out your finances
Naturally, the first thing you’ll want to do is amend your household budget to accommodate a larger, more suitable home loan. Upsizing your family home will typically always mean preparing your family finances to make space for a larger and thus more expensive property. New parents can get ahead of the curve by sitting down with their mortgage broker in order to determine their borrowing power and get a good gauge on the types of properties that they should be looking for.
As you explore the journey of upsizing, remember to get a property appraisal to understand the true value of your current and potential new homes. An accurate appraisal ensures your financial decisions are well-informed, safeguarding your family’s future as it grows.
You may also decide to conduct your own independent research and look for any deals with home loan providers online. By doing so, you may be able to find a few home loans that fit your family and its budget to a tee. Be sure to discuss all of your shortlisted loan options with your mortgage broker or other relevant financial specialists and advisors. To navigate the complexities of home loans and find a deal that suits your family’s needs, consider consulting a mortgage broker in Sydney who can offer personalized advice and help you explore your options.
Outline your family’s needs
Once you’ve developed a strong understanding of your budget and borrowing capacity, the next thing you’ll want to do is determine exactly what features or selling points you’re looking for from your next family home.
How many bedrooms do you need? Do you need one bathroom or two? Are you after a single storey home or a home with two storeys? Do you want a big backyard for your kids? Asking yourself these questions now can help increase your chances of finding a suitable family home that’s within your budget once it is time to start looking.
It’s also a good idea to ask your older kids for input here, just to get them excited about moving home and to ensure that their own preferences are being acknowledged throughout the upsizing process. Whilst parents are aware that there is undeniably a difference between the ‘wants’ and ‘needs’ of your family, kids are less inclined to see this distinction. So reassuring them that their new family home ticks all their own boxes can help make your family’s moving process a lot simpler.
Look into locations
It’s no secret that location is the name of the game when it comes to dabbling in real estate. But for growing families, selecting the location of your family home is about so much more than just buying into a ‘nice neighbourhood’. The more daily schedules within your family unit, the more crucial it is to ensure that your new property is conveniently located for all members of your household.
School districts and zones should also be a topmost factor for young families when it comes to buying real estate. Be sure to read up on suburb demographics as well as any information you can find on local schools when preparing a shortlist of suburbs that you’d like to buy in. Having this shortlist ready can help you greatly finetune your property search processes.
And who knows? Your search for ideal locations to raise your family may even take you to other states entirely. There’s a reason why so many families are making the move from Sydney to the Sunshine Coast, for instance. Greater and more varied job opportunities, schooling options, and general lifestyle changes aside, you’ll also find that moving your family from the metropolitan Sydney region to the wider, open suburbs across southern Queensland should provide your kids with plenty to get excited about – just so long as they aren’t leaving too many friends behind! Of course, this won’t be an issue for families with toddlers or infants, which is all the more reason to make an interstate move now.
Is it possible to renovate?
Finally, although it is possible to move home with young kids in tow, it’s certainly not a straightforward process. And for families juggling life with a newborn as well, it can take a good few months before you actually do get to properly unpack and actually feel comfortable and at home in your new settings.
If you are feeling a little bit hesitant about the idea of moving home with younger children or infants, your first thought may be not to sell your existing family home, but perhaps to renovate it. So ask yourself if your family’s changing needs can actually be met through a home renovation project rather than by upsizing and starting afresh elsewhere.
Keep in mind too that renovations can be just as lengthy as moving home, and this option likely won’t be possible for families with a newborn. The last thing any new parent wants is construction work interfering with their efforts to get their newborn on a consistent daily schedule.
Renovating your existing family home may also fulfil your family’s changing needs in the immediate future rather than in the long term. For example, adding another bedroom may guarantee that all your kids have their own room, but there’s still every possibility that these spaces become too small for them as they start school or even high school.
If renovations are possible, however, then they could prove to be less expensive than buying a new property. Renovations could also boost the resale value of your existing family home, potentially providing your family with a stronger payday if or when you do sell the property. One again, however, this is a solution that should be decided upon through input with the whole family, including your older kids and even the grandparents too.
As you can see, there’s plenty to consider when it comes to upsizing your family home. And most of the factors you’ll be tossing between aren’t even related to the property itself a lot of the time. For new parents, making sure that your kids are being settled in an area that can provide them with a rich and bountiful childhood and education is usually a lot more important than finding a home with a pool, vaulted ceilings, or two extra bedrooms. In this sense, upsizing is just as much about securing an opportunity as it is about buying property. So long as you maintain that perspective, you should be able to find some superb new digs for your growing family to enjoy.