For and Against : Moving or Improving.

It’s a classic conundrum for families that are getting too big for their home.  Do you improve the current property – perhaps by extending or creating a loft room – or do you move to a bigger house? There’s a cost involved in both, along with a great deal of time, planning and stress.

It’s also a question that could easily be imagined as a court room drama. Top QCs from London’s leading Chambers duking it out in front of  a wig adorned Judge for him to come to a ruling – one way or another – as to which is best. So, in an offbeat ABC Selfstore stylee, and with your permission, M’lud, we’ll commence proceedings in the case of Moving versus Improving…

All rise, the honourable Judge Good Deed presiding.

[Judge Good Deed] “Thank you, you may sit. Today we will be hearing from Mr Timothy Moving-House Queens Council, who will be making the case for Moving Home, and Mr Anthony Home-Improvements, who will be making the case for Home Improvements. If I may direct you both to please keep your submissions concise as this is an imaginary blog that’s here to help people make their own decisions based on the evidence presented. Mr Moving-House, please begin your evidence.”  

[Timothy Moving-House QC] “Thank you M’Lud. M’Lud, it is my contention that the case for moving home is clear and straightforward. I will make representation to present the facts as they stand and demonstrate that moving home is by far the better option for an expanding family. I will begin my evidence with the simple fact – and let’s assume a move to a larger property – that you will have more space.”

[Anthony Home-Improvements QC] “Objection!”

[Judge Good Deed] “It’s very early on in Mr Moving-Houses’ submission Mr Home-Improvements – what is your objection?”

[Anthony Home-Improvements QC] “M’Lud, Mr Moving-House makes the assumption that people will be moving to a larger property and therefore have more space. I think that is an assumption that should not be made.”

[Judge Good Deed] “Overruled Mr Home-Improvments. I think in the context in which we are hearing this case it is safe to assume that families are looking for capacity in which to expand. Mr Moving-Houses, please continue.”

[Timothy Moving-House QC] “As I was saying M’Lud, many families reach a point when they are bursting at the seams and have outgrown their existing premises. They require more space for the trappings of modern life. The most straightforward way to achieve this is to move house. Whilst acknowledging the considerable financial outlay, effort and upheaval involved the practical inconvenience is – relatively speaking – short lived.

“The average time is around 10 weeks, at the end of which is the exciting prospect of a larger property with more space and storage. Moving will bring the opportunity to expand with features that cannot be developed in the existing property – perhaps off-road parking or a garage, a garden as well as extra rooms such as bedrooms, dining room, possibly even a games room. I should also note M’Lud that property is an investment and in most cases homeowners fail to recoup costs of Home-Improvement when they sell.  M’Lud – the case for Moving-House is clear, I rest.”

[Judge Good Deed] “Thank you Mr Moving-House,  Mr Home-Improvements, the court is yours.” 

[Anthony Home-Improvements QC] “Thank you M’Lud. M’Lud whilst m’learned colleague makes a just and reasonable case for moving property, he has failed to appreciate some of the key strengths of Improving a Home. Whilst recognising that there will always be limitations as to what can be achieved within the confines of an existing property the possibilities are quite frankly broader than Mr Moving-House would have you believe.” Existing rooms can be adapted with innovative and specialist furniture enabling them to have multi-use. Seldom used objects or seasonal belongings – such as winter sports equipment – can be stored at a nearby self storage unit.”

“In addition M’Lud, new rules on Mortgages mean that getting funds from a lender are becoming all the more difficult, whilst the costs involved in moving home grow ever greater. Conversely, getting additional credit on an existing mortgage to invest in a property is potentially easier to achieve. The investment should at least add matched value to the property – at the very least it should make it more desirable and saleable at a later date. M’Lud, I think the case for Home-Improvement is more than a match for Moving-Home. M’Lud, I rest my case.” 

[Judge Good Deed]  Gentlemen thank you for your submissions. I have listened to the arguments and considered them at length. I find it extremely difficult to come to a judgement as so much of a decision will be down to individual circumstance. There may be additional reasons for moving house – a new job, a pay-rise – so on and so forth. Equally there may be constraints to stay in an existing property – affordability and proximity of a commute spring to mind. I therefore have no option but to dismiss the case and leave householders to make up their own minds. Case dismissed.” 

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