This is about an interesting conversation I had with a close friend of mine recently. He was considering buying a bigger home, and I thought I might share it with you. He has a family and is trying to make the right decision for them, and wonders if upsizing is the right thing to do, and whether it is a necessary risk. Let’s just assume for yourself, it’s the only tax-free investment you have. There are actually some tax-free savings accounts options out there but in theory, this is the only investment where no one is coming at you with hat-in-hand, asking for a piece. It’s where you spend the most time. This family loves to entertain and have people over. They spend tons of time in their home, and don’t have the elbow room they want. I asked my friend if he had any other savings, and how he was building for his financial freedom down the road. What everyone should consider for their family is what they are doing to ensure a future where they are able to help out if their kids decide to go to university or want to start a business when they are older. For most, it’s not much. There is not enough preparation in the early stages of life to make sure that the building blocks are in place to build a higher net worth and some financial stability for the future. Generally, most have a tendency to make the investment in other areas of their life. People want a new car, new stereo, hardwood flooring, want to go on vacation and whatever the case may be, they make it work. But not enough do the same with their house, the most important and chances are, the most expensive asset they will ever own. Make that work first. You’ll find that everything else is easier. I always have a level of cautiousness when I work with buyers, but I always encourage them to think of the level of success of people in their lives, whether it was buying stock or gambling on a new business venture, and consider how those people who have invested in their houses are doing.
Should I buy more real estate? I think for most, it’s a good move. There is a limit obviously in what you should buy and how much you should buy, but for this particular family and for many others I work with, the question shouldn’t just be ‘Can I afford a little more?’ but sometimes it should be ‘Can I afford not to do this?’ I think it’s an important piece of where you’re going in life to make sure that you are investing the right amount into your principal residence.