We make a lot of decisions that add to our expenses and detract from our enjoyment derived from them. Buy new tires for the car, and trade it a week or month later. The short time enjoying the new tires cost you $5 to $20 or more a day, and the trade in value is substantially unaffected. Remodel the kitchen or bathroom just before you put the house on the market. The upgrades may affect the sale price, but you received almost no benefit from them other than return of some of the cash outlay. The same improvements made a couple years ago would likely have the same effect on sale price, along with your couple years of use and enjoyment.
The day of realization is often the day a home owner decides to put the house on the market. The objective analysis of the agent or the staging consultant may include a list of improvements that will help bring top dollar for the home. Carpeting, landscaping, updated fixtures, etc. all could have been completed a couple years ago and still bring top dollar for your home. What could have been a moderate lifestyle improvement a couple years ago is now nothing but a marketing expense.
Let's go one step further. Your home is not exactly what you would like it to be, and the ideal situation would be to trade it in. If you make the changes needed to bring top dollar, there will be an expense that will help improve sales price and little else. Home prices will either rise, fall, or remain the same over the next few years, and likewise for interest rates. There is little incentive for making a timely change, or is there?
Like the upgrades that most economically could have been made when they would yield the most in both personal enjoyment and market price yield, your lifestyle upgrade has an optimal execution date too. You could wait until a year before the kids start reaching move-out age to move to that larger, better home. The new place would still be enjoyable, but not enjoyable for as long as if you moved in five years ago. Maybe you're eighty years old and always wanted a nice place in the country or by the lake. Now is a better time to make the change than next year, but not as good as last year or ten years ago.
Eventually, you will cease to be the owner of your home. It may no longer suit your needs because the nest emptied out, or you may simply have reached the end of your life lease. The one thing for certain is that the best time to make a lifestyle upgrade is almost always today. Call me if you want to discuss improving your and your family's lifestyle. It won't cost anything but your time, and you can hang up at any time.