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Love Your House, but Hate its Location? Move It

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If your house is perfect for you but your neighborhood isn’t, you can have the whole home moved to a new place — but it’ll cost you.

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Take your house with you

Make sure your house meets building codes in your destination town before engaging a moving company. Image: Wolfe House and Building Movers

Love your house but hate your lot? If you have a whole-house moving company pick it up and move it, you won’t even have to pack up your stuff, suggests New York Times Blogger Jesse McKinley.

“For anyone who has ever suffered through the agony of a move (towers of boxes, miles of packing tape, untold numbers of annoyed friends), it seems like the ideal solution: just take the whole darn house, beds and all, and plop it in another location,” writes McKinley. “Little needs to be done to the building’s interior, and indeed, some homes remain completely furnished.”

House movers (as in companies that move the whole house) get called in to save historic properties, to raise homes in flood zones, and to put new foundations or basements under existing homes.

Moving an old home to a new location instead of tearing it down is the ultimate act of recycling — it keeps tons of building materials from going to the landfill.

Before you get too excited about not having to pack up your stuff when you move, consider the cons of a whole-house move:

  • Your house may have to meet building codes in the destination town.
  • You’ll pay to take down and put back up anything that has to be raised or moved along the route, like utility poles and overhead power lines.
  • It’s not cheap. Figure $14 to $16 per square foot, plus the cost of the new lot, new foundation, and reconnecting utilities. Home features like basements add to the cost.

Whole-house moving also works in the other direction, too. If you like your lot but want to add a second house, you can buy a surprisingly affordable moved house from companies like Cox House Moving Co. in the Carolinas.

Would you pay $20,000 to move your house to a new lot or to a new location on your current lot?

Dona-DeZube Dona DeZube

has been writing about real estate for more than two decades. She lives in a suburban Baltimore Midcentury modest home on a 3-acre lot shared with possums, raccoons, foxes, a herd of deer, and her blue-tick hound. Follow Dona on Google+.

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