J.S. Brown and Co. offers tips to homeowners who are deciding whether to move to a new house or renovate their existing home.

In this inflated real estate market, where demand for both homes and remodeling is skyrocketing, the decision on how best to spend your hard-earned money can be confusing. To help bring a little clarity to the decision, here are a few things the folks at J.S. Brown and Co. say homeowners should consider before deciding whether to move to a new house or renovate their existing home.

COST

Moving

• What will a new house cost in the area you want?

• Will you be able to find a home that offers everything you're looking for, or will you need to remodel the new house?

• What are the costs associated with packing/moving?

• Is your home paid for?

• How will the new mortgage interest rate compare to your current one?

• Are property values in your area steady, rising or falling?

Improving

• What will the design cost?

• What will the project cost?

• Will you need to rent another living space while the home is being remodeled?

• What will be the extra costs, like eating out/higher utility bills during construction?

• How much value will the project add to your home?

• How does your home compare to others in your neighborhood in price?

• How much equity do you have in

your home?

TIMING

Moving

• Can you time the sale of your old home with the purchase of a new home?

• What is the best time of year to sell in your area?

• How quickly can you get financing?

• How quickly can you find/close/take possession on a new home?

• How quickly can you sell/close/move out on the current home?

• How long will it take to pack up the old house and settle in to the new one? Can you do it by yourself?

Improving

• How long will the design process take?

• How long will the permit/zoning/architectural review process take?

• How long will the construction take?

• How far in advance is your contractor scheduling work?

• Can you live through the remodel? Would it go faster if you move out?

• Will your project be affected by weather?

INTANGIBLES

Moving

• What part of town do you want to live in?

• What's the school system like in the new location? The proximity to work, to family, to recreation?

• Are you looking for a different lifestyle? Home to condo or vice versa? Rural vs. suburban vs. urban?

• Is there something about the home you don't like that can't be fixed, such as being located close to a busy road, etc.?

Improving

• Are there features of your home/neighborhood you would hate to leave, such as neighbors, landscaping, project(s) you've already completed, the school system and the neighborhood vibe?

• Would moving disrupt your family

too much?

• What's the sentimental value of your home?

• Is your home historic or unique?