Stay put and pay off the mortgage, or move to a bigger house?(28 Posts)
We are in a very fortunate position of being able to pay off the mortgage within the first half of this year.
We live in a modest house, with a small back yard, larger than average front garden and one less bedroom than I'd ideally like - our youngest two DCs share a room. The kitchen is small, but what the house lacks in space, it more than makes up for in history, character and happy memories (I think!)
We've lived here since our DC3 was born, so two of our children have only ever lived here, and DC1 can't remember living anywhere else.
I work in a completely stress free job, which I love. It fits in around the school day, so we have no need for childcare, which on my income, we couldn't afford anyway!
DH is self-employed, and has a very stressful job, which he doesn't really enjoy. He shoulders all the financial responsibility, but is happy to do this, and for me to be doing the job I do.
I would love to stay here, and for DH to under less pressure, spend more time at home, have a day off in the week...go fishing, anything but be under even more pressure!
He's keen to move, so that each DC can have their own room, to a house with more land. Even when I've talked him round, and he agrees, he keeps going back to "Should we, shouldn't we?" scenario.
WWYD wise ones?
Just read back, forgot to add that we have 4DCs, and that family members are forever saying things like "I don't know how you manage with 6 of you in your house, with that kitchen!"
Dsis has openly said she feels claustrophobic in our house, but we don't, and there's nobody more claustrophobic than me!
Everyone in our families who we've asked has said "If I were you, I'd move to a bigger house and not pay the mortgage off!"
You sound really happy as you are so in one sense it's easy to say 'stay'.
FWIW we moved and absolutely love our bigger house. It's a real family home.
Do you think you'll still be happy when DCs are teens? If yes then I'd stay. If you're not sure I'd move because they you have longer to spread your repayments and get closer to paying the new mortgage off iyswim?
I like security so would pay off the mortgage. I have also been solely financially responsible for the family in a stressful job and it was absolutely no fun at all, never doing that again!
However if you need more space is there any way to extend, maybe create an attic room? My kids are older teens now and I'm beginning to imagine the house as too big once they move out! So you could spend a lot of money moving to a bigger house only to think of downsizing in a few years...
If he's stressed, he isn't building the same happy memories as you and so he's seeing the house differently. I don't have an anser really. I'd move to give the DCs their own room if I could. Not sure about having extra 'land' that can come with huge maintenence costs and all kinds of hidden problems, unless that's your business and you know the right people and can manage land well.
I would pay off the mortgage
DH would move
Is there any way you could stay put and do some kind of extension
If not I woukd be tempted to pay it off, stay put, see how dh does on a 4 day week and look at what the house market is doing
Are your children bothered about having their own rooms?
^^what figgy says
Especially if it's in a high house price area it's sensible to capitalise on its value.
Could you service a mortgage on your salary alone if DH took a break?
it isn't really security or move is it? If you move you still have security of a massive deposit and potentially more security if prices rise later.
but don't listen to family, them criticising your house is rude
We've stayed in a three bed semi rather than move to a bigger house. We have a tiny mortgage and I love having money to spend on other stuff. Kids get more expensive the older they get ime. I can buy dd the expensive boots she wants, the school ski trip, the new laptop, etc.
However we do only have one child. I do think that having their own bedroom is important for kids.
We are in the same position, paying off our mortgage this year. Our house is big enough. We did a loft conversion, so it's bigger upstairs iyswim, dcs have a double bedroom each. Smallish reception rooms, large conservatory, medium garden.
We have had a lot of people ask if we will move up the ladder.
Will we? Not a chance. We are happy with our lot, going on a holiday of a lifetime this summer, then squirrelling away money for the dcs college education. Plan is to then downsize and live by the sea
I think it also depends on how old you & your DP are and how long/much of a bigger mortgage you think you would need to move to a bigger house. Another 10 years of a not-so-big mortgage at age 35 is a different scenario to having another 10 years of massive mortgage at 55.
Also, as the financial responsibility of the mortgage sounds like it will covered mostly by DPs job - what's his preference?
If you're in a strong position to have quite a small mortgage if you do move of your able to pay off your current one?
Your loan to value rate will be low and you'll be able to access good mortgages. I would go and see a financial advisor and do an affordability study with you.
I think I would move!
We are in exactly the situation you describe, although we have three DC's.
We exchange next week . DH really wanted to move and in the end he talked me round. We are keeping out house to let out though, as I love it too much.
I should've said that our house is Grade II listed, and although we haven't yet sought professional advice, we don't think we could convert the loft space, as the eaves are in the top rooms, IYSWIM.
So, making what we have bigger, I don't think is an option.
Our eldest DC is already 18, so feasibly, in 6 years times, probably won't be living here, which would mean that DC3 could move into her room. DC3 would be 12 yrs then, by which time everyone would have their own room.
There are no guarantees that DC1 would move out by then, though, then again she might move out sooner (sob!).
I am 40, DH is 43. There is only one house that DH would move to - it's round the corner from here and we've viewed it. It needs a lot of work doing, but is live-inable as it stands. It's very expensive, so money would be
quite very tight.
Didn't intentionally drip feed, sorry, wrote the post in a hurry in the bustle of breakfast and getting ready for school, as once again, DH brought up the subject this morning!
Isabella how exciting - hope you love it!
Someone upthread mentioned about downsizing...I love the idea of staying put, and not having to downsize when the DCs have all grown up - it definitely won't be too big! Also, I'm a romantic, and love the idea of having grand children coming here and saying things like "Granny, someones' scribbled on the door!" and me saying
"Yes, that was your Auntie LittleMisFitless, when she was 2!" (We've decided to leave the scribble on and not sand it off.)
Also envisage them coming round and measuring them up against the place where their parents were measured and comparing!
I'm off to have a word with myself, about not being so sentimental!
We had the same options a couple of years ago. We paid off our mortgage which was a great feeling. A few months later we dedicate to start looking for somewhere bigger. We moved to our new house this time last year, it's worth still having a mortgage!
We didn't love our old house like you do so didn't have any sentimental feelings about leaving. I much prefer where we are now and would stay here if we were in the same position again.
I think this is always a difficult one to advise on.
If you were a RL friend and I advised you to move for your ideal house, then watched over the next few years as you were struggling with the work to be done on it, paying the mortgage, your Dh depressed at having to work harder to pay all the rising costs in a job he doesn't like....I would feel like a terrible friend!
On the other hand you may always regret not moving and taking the risk, which may be small, if your life runs smoothly.
So who knows what you should do <helpful>. The safe thing would be to stay and make the most of a house which you like living in.
Have you talked to the children about it?
Bowlersaem I've only mentioned it to DC1, when we were both saying "Yep, let's do it!" She would love the extra space.
I genuinely think DC4 would not be that keen. I think she'd be scared in a room on her own, but then she'd grow out of that, of course. Currently, she tries to get me to go to the loo with her (no downstairs loo here,) as she's not keen on being upstairs on her own.
DCs 2 & 3 would like it, but would also be happy here!
I'd stay if your eldest is 18 too. We moved rather than pay off the mortgage when DD was 1 and I was pregnant with DS. We will have benefit of the larger house their entire childhood.
I'd sooner have the spare cash if they were teens.
Stay. Be mortgage free. Build up your nest egg for the future and maybe be in a position to help out your kids or just go on a nice holiday.
Life is about experiences, not living in a big house. It sounds big enough to me. Sharing a bedroom is fine.
I agree, with you both Spag and nottheOP. I'm not sure the other house would ever feel like home, or cosy, either, even though it is quite spectacular and beautiful. We could have a wild flower meadow, an orchard, keep bees and yet still, I think we'd be just as happy, if not happier here.
I wonder what the point of all that would be, if we never saw DH, and even if we did he'd be really stressed and exhausted.
Stay and spend the money helping your DCs set up homes of their own when the time comes. Girls are usually mature enough to want to leave the family home by 21. Much as you might want them to stay!!!
We had to make the same decision. We stayed and are now getting our house extended. It's very affordable compared to moving to a bigger house. I don't know if it is the right decision but it means we don't have to worry about losing our home in case of redundancy, long term illness etc. And we can stay here for life. When the work is finished the DCs will have a bedroom each but the house won't be too big for us when they grow up and move out
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