The 4 things homeowners and renters wish they had done differently
The No. 1 regret that Americans have about their homes? Its size. More than four in 10 homeowners and renters (41%) say they wish they’d chosen either a smaller or larger home, according to data released Thursday by Trulia.com. And most of those (33%) say they wish they’d opted for a bigger one.
While Trulia couldn’t say exactly why bigger is better to homeowners, it may speak to the fact that Americans want more space to put all the stuff they’re increasingly accumulating. Indeed, our spending has shot up significantly in recent years (median household expenditures grew by about 25% between 1996 and 2014, according to a 2016 Pew report — and at the same time, rents on self-storage units are climbing
4 things Americans regret about their homes
|Wish they had chosen a larger home||33%|
|Wish they had done more or less remodeling||16%|
|Wish they’d gathered more information before deciding on their home||15%|
|Wish they had chosen a smaller home||8%|
Whatever the reasons though, it’s far from the only regret — as anyone who’s been faced with high remodeling or repair costs will tell you. Just ask New Jersey resident resident Tim Manni, 34 — who bought a home in West Caldwell with his wife in 2014. He tells Moneyish that “the one thing I wish I did differently was not buy a home that needed so many repairs.”
“When my wife and I were shopping for our home our realtor told us, ‘If you get two out of three, you’re in good shape.’ He was referring to price, location and amenities.” They got a good price (it was lower than their max budget) and the right location (near shopping and transportation), but the home “needed a lot more expensive repairs than we expected.”
Indeed, after the inspection, the Mannis — who had originally saved enough money to make a 10% down payment on the home — found out that the cost of the home repairs including a new roof would mean they were only able to put down 6% of the down payment cost. That means higher monthly payments for the couple now. To offset that, “there were several things we had to give up once we became homeowners” including “some dinners, drinks, and contributions to our savings accounts,” Manni, who is a mortgage expert for Nerdwallet, tells Moneyish.
Interestingly, it’s millennials who have the most regrets about the home they live in. Fully 71% say they regret something about the home they chose or the process they went through to chose it, compared to 51% of the rest of us. David Weidner, the managing editor for housing and economic research at Trulia, says this may be, in large part, due to the financial constraints under which many millennials bought their homes.
Top real estate regrets by age
|Millennials (18-34)||All ages|
|Wish they had chosen a larger home||29% of the people who have regrets had this regret||17%|
|Wish they had done more remodeling||24%||12%|
|Wish they had been more financially secure before they decided on a home||17%||9%|
© 2017 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved