When renovating your home, is it better to move out or stay put?

When renovating your home, is it better to move out or stay put?

It is not unusual in New Zealand for homeowners considering a renovation–particularly a major renovation–to forget about the possible need to move to temporary accommodation. It probably doesn’t even cross the mind of many who take it for granted that they will live on the property during the renovation, but that isn’t necessarily a good choice.


Stay at home

If you choose to remain in your home during a renovation, you could save money you would spend on accommodation elsewhere, assuming that your presence does not hinder or slow the pace of work, which itself involves some cost. Not having the family in the house allows for more simultaneous work, potentially reducing the renovation timeframe.

As builders, your safety is our first priority, and we must ensure measures are in place to keep you and your family safe during renovations. If you have children, the health and safety risks warrant careful thought.

Another negative issue that may arise from living on the property is lack of privacy—you will have work crews in your space and your home, which can disrupt your routines. Dust and other debris can be uncomfortable for some, particularly people who have allergies or respiratory issues. Children and pets may be vulnerable, while the environment itself could begin to feel cluttered, cramped and noisy. Nail guns, saws and hammers are not known for being super quiet.

On the flip side, you do get to enjoy the visual progress in real-time. Continuing to live on the property means you get to remain in ‘your space’ with all the conveniences and comforts of home–well, most of them, anyway. For example, if your kitchen is under construction, you could face some challenges around cooking and access to food, snacks and so on; this may put you a bit outside your comfort zone. Still, you retain some semblance of normalcy and routine.


Temporary accommodation

The same can be said about moving to temporary accommodation. You may not necessarily have to change your routines, but change, as they say, is as good as a holiday. Naturally, accommodation will incur a cost, but this will vary on the location, household size and duration–you may literally have a menu of options and prices to choose from.

Moving out creates a safer environment for your family, but if you have family pets, you will need to arrange accommodation for the animals – this will no doubt be a source of stress and anxiety for the animals as well as the family. However, if you are carrying out a major renovation, you will likely need to make other arrangements for your pets anyway because they will not cope with your home becoming an industrial worksite.


Temporary accommodation on your property

A third alternative could be to move out to temporary accommodation on your property, for example, a caravan, repurposed shipping container, motorhome or garden cabin. This means you enjoy most of the convenience and comforts of home, with less of the disruption.

Ultimately, however, the absence of the family can expedite the renovation process because workers and other trades operate more freely without needing to accommodate the family’s daily routines.

Finally, for families choosing temporary accommodation, finding a balance between staying close enough to monitor the progress and far enough to escape the inconveniences of the renovation site is worth serious consideration. Additionally, regular communication with the renovation team can ensure that the project remains aligned with the family’s expectations.


If you’re interested in renovating, call us for a chat on 0800 224 628 or email enquiries@cainbuilt.co.nz, and one of our team will be in touch.