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The decision to renovate your home can be a costly one but, as with other financial decisions, should be based on the careful answers to several key questions.

What is your motivation? Perhaps your family has outgrown your present home, you plan on staying for years to come, or there is excessive wear and tear on floors, walls or carpeting. Any of these might be good reasons favoring renovations.

What is the cost? Brainstorm with your family what your ideal renovations would be, then get estimates from several reputable contractors. Do you have the cash in hand or will you need to secure a home improvement loan? The cost might be too much for your budget or you could selectively choose one or two specific areas for renovation. Also consider the type of renovations you do — some have a higher return on investment (kitchens and bathrooms) than others (sunrooms and pools).

What will be the effect on the marketability or asking price on a future home sale? Updating is a common way to boost a seller’s asking price, but you must consider what the average value in the neighborhood is and whether renovations could potentially price you out of the market.

Will renovating cost less than moving? Moving can be a substantial expense so it’s worth factoring into your decision.

The answers to these questions should help you make a more informed decision on whether to take the renovation plunge or stick with the status quo.

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