New Year…New Home? How to Know Whether to Stay or Go
A KlopasStratton team blog by: Bridget Chambers, Life Coach, Writer
In Chicago, the housing market has been on fire for the past 12 months – as hot as the summer sun in July, where everything that’s touched is turned to… sold! As the market slightly cools (just a bit) and the temperatures plummet alongside it this winter, we find ourselves looking toward next year. What does 2022 bring for us as professionals in our careers? How about for us as family members, friends, and individuals? How about us in our own neighborhoods, communities, and homes?
It could be said that 2020 swallowed each of us whole and spit us back out. Some of us needed the revelatory slap wide awake; some of us were already hanging on by a thread. In any case, we were forever changed.
And now, as we end 2021, it seems like many of us have spent the year stuck in neutral – picking up the pieces from a painful pandemic and trying to make up for lost time. Did the stroke of midnight on December 31st mark something new... or was it just an underwhelming, confetti-less reset to signify more of the same? I think it does us well to remember that while each of us has experienced the last 24 months in a unique way, we've all had to adapt.
So, what comes next? What needs to change? In terms of real estate, it might be the address at which you fetch your mail. The KlopasStratton team is tethered to the strong belief that life’s foundation begins at home. So, in other words, if thoughts of a move have lingered for a while, perhaps you’ve landed on the right blog. There is a universal process of transition — and the idea that as life changes form, the place you call “home” must change with it.
Struggling with your decision to buy, sell, or stay? Here are some questions to consider:
What do you need to know to make a great decision?
Building, buying, and selling is a process that flows with ever-changing needs. In order to know what your current housing desires are, you must build a timeline of what makes sense and work backwards. (For example, do you want to move to a different school district by the time your child turns five?
Notate that.) Make a list of questions you need answered before a homebuying – or home-selling – decision can be made.
What factors will make the most difference to you?
Are you a neighborly Nancy, or do you shut the door before your neighbors have the chance to say hello? Do you want a low-maintenance townhouse, or do you love the traditional feeling of a single-family home? Are you struggling to make your current space fit your growing family, or are you feeling overwhelmed by too much space? All these factors make a definitive difference in your 2022 home decisions. If you can come up with a list of things you have in your home now versus what your wish list includes, you’ll be better equipped to decide if now is the time to stay or go.
What is exciting about this potential new opportunity?
If buying and selling seems like one big, directionless mess, then it might be good to table a decision until you’re clearer on the motives behind a move. However, if there is something even slightly enticing or exciting about a prospective change, you might benefit to map out why. Write down a pros and cons list. If your pros weigh enough, the right time… could be right now.
You’ve invested a lot of thought in this decision so far. Step back for a moment and imagine that it would cost nothing (time, money, energy) to change your mind. Would that influence your decision?
This is a just a healthy way to look at any decision. Buying (and selling) a home is one of the most important decisions a person can make, so it is best to be made without the wrong motivating factors. Maybe you felt too foggy to think about a home transition in 2021. Perhaps you feel pressure to stay put because you didn’t jump when the market was at its best. Those kinds of thoughts can be paralyzing, so it’s best to start with today and right now. If you were starting this process at the very beginning, what would drive your best decision?
If you say “no” now, how likely is it that in a year you’ll wish you had said “yes”?
The simplest way to weigh a decision is by looking at both the short-term and long-term implications of making it. We can tend to get so tied up in one of those, that we can completely miss the other. A well-rounded choice is made when you can see very plainly how it will affect your life – both today and next year. Making a move means understanding what that move means for your future. Once you can assess how a decision will impact your lifestyle, you can feel more confident about making a move.
What makes this new opportunity worth pursuing?
Since we are a species who, on the whole, can be quite resistant to change, there is almost always value in asking “why not?” Chances are, if the idea of relocating pops into your head as you’re making New Year’s resolutions, you would do well to seriously consider it. In this case, your gut can be your guide.
Should I stay or Should I Go?
The KlopasStratton team prides themselves on assisting clients in times of critical change and home transition. Here, real estate clients are given a clear, refreshing approach to turning ideas into action - and action into foundation. Should you stay or go? Only you know that, so let those questions be your head start. In the meantime, do your due diligence, reflect where necessary, and make 2022 the year of making moves (or staying where you are, of course!
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