Would You Rather: Have $10,000 For A Home Renovation Or For A Fabulous Vacation?

Did everyone recover from tax day? Got your extensions filed? Just kidding. Not really.

Taxes always make me think of money. And how nice it would be to have some. And then I fantasize about what I would do with it if I did have some.

My children are starting to get to the ages where I would really like to give them experiences rather than stuff. My house is full of stuff. I am tired of stuff, quite frankly.

What I would not be tired of would be a week in Hawaii lounging on the beach. Or a fantastic ski vacation where we end each day lounging by a roaring fire.

Except when I look around my house, I also see an outdated, gross linoleum floor in my kitchen. I see the blueberry wallpaper that was ugly and out of style before the glue even dried on it. Maybe I would love cooking if I was doing it in a beautiful, remodeled kitchen?

Probably not.

Still, though, having some extra money laying around to do some much needed home renovations would be really nice. $10,000 could go a long way to really sprucing this place up.


It could also buy an incredible, once-in-a-lifetime vacation for my family. We could make memories that would become the stories of family gatherings for years to come. Traveling with my kids is no longer the torturous event it used to be. Both girls can pull their own suitcases even. Think of the fun we could have!

I mean until we weren’t.

Seriously, though, what would I pick? If I had a hypothetical 10K laying around, would I rather do a home renovation or take a fabulous vacation with my family?

Decisions, decisions.

Lisa said she would DEFINITELY do a home renovation project, no question about it.

Everyone who has ever been in my home is praying that I will have the same answer, but honestly, y’all I think I would pick the trip.

What do our Dose Peeps think? Would you rather have $10,000 for a home renovation project or take a fabulous vacation with your family? And not in the future, but right now. You can’t spend the 10K paying off bills or saving it. It must be spent in one of these two ways.





Would You Rather: Have $10,000 For A Home Renovation Or For A Fabulous Vacation? — 110 Comments

  1. Easy peasy! I am the girl who has lived over 10 years without a master bedroom…bring on the VACATION!!! In all seriousness, I chose experiences over things any day.

  2. Hmmm. . . . .This is another tough one! We are actually getting ready to do a master bathroom renovation that we have been saving for. It would certainly be nice to have that $$ to cover it or do some other renovations around here. On the other hand, I also want to take my kids to lots of places and would love to use the cash on a European vacation. Definitely a hard choice. Is is cheating if I split it?? 5K toward the reno and 5K for an awesome summer vacay?????

    • No, you can’t split it! πŸ˜‰ That would make it too easy! One or the other! πŸ™‚ Good luck with the home reno…it will be so fantastic when it is finished! πŸ™‚

  3. Ohh! Lisa broke the rules and picked both!

    I’d pick the 10k, but only if I could use it on a down payment for a house. We rent and are dreaming of the day we can have a place of our own!

    • I know! I had to scold her! πŸ˜‰

      Your answer is really good…I think we could count a down payment as the ultimate renovation! πŸ™‚

  4. I’d take the trip! My whole extended family had a family reunion in Italy coming up on 4 years ago, this June 17th. Two weeks at a Tuscan villa…

    I’ll never forget the date because it was Lennon’s birthday, as in actual day of birth. We didn’t make it if course and I’ve always wanted to find a way to go.

    • Oh man, Robin…you obviously missed it for the BEST reason ever…but Tuscany! πŸ˜‰ Yeah, I would want to figure out how to get there, too!

  5. This is an easy one and I’d go for the vacation since I haven’t had one in over 2 years. Seriously, I took a few days off from blogging last week and that was the closest I got to time off in god knows how long and would love to live it up and take a grand vacation now anyway of the week. Oh to dreaming!! πŸ™‚

    • I have not had a real vacation in a few years either Janine, and I need one. We are getting one in July, thank goodness, so I am excited about that! πŸ™‚

  6. We don’t take many vactations, but I would still use the 10K for renovations at this point. I think I would enjoy the updates more over a longer period of time.
    I’d spend the *next* 10K on a vacation. (Since we’re dreaming here, right?) πŸ™‚

    • It really would be fantastic, right Nicole?! Although, I really do fear that my fantasy would not live up to the reality, but hey, life is like that! πŸ˜‰

  7. Vacation!!! We don’t even have a house for the moment, and $10K would only be a tiny drop in the bucket toward a mortgage so we’d go somewhere special.

  8. This is sooo hard! I’m debating over it like someone is really handing me a suitcase full of cash. Or maybe I am procrastinating because I’m supposed to be making a menu plan and grocery list. I would go with home renovation. I just don’t know what though! I like new things πŸ™‚ But, a trip to Hawaii without kids would be nice…

    • I totally did the same thing when I was thinking about it Michelle! And we appreciate this level of commitment from our readers to our hypothetical questions! πŸ™‚

  9. Nope renovation… I am a home body for the most part and I would prefer it be as nice as can be for me to laze around in.. A pool would be ideal.. you know covered and heated.. Oh I dropped ya’ll into a blog tour thingie over on my blog ahem pretty please with sugar on top

  10. I’d pick renovation because my toddler is not at an easy stage for traveling! Additionally, I’d make that renovation one that would bring lots of great memories – like a beautiful deck where we could host friends and family and eat outside.

    • What a great way to look at it Katie…I definitely think the ages of your children make a difference to answering this question! πŸ™‚

  11. The only way we’ve been able to swing vacations the past few years is with tax dollars but now we have to pass and use it on a new driveway. Or painting the house. Or removing the trees. Or fixing the crop circle in the backyard. I would MUCH rather it be on sunning my pasty skin in the Caribbean. Trust me.

    • We are in the same boat Kristen…I feel like every time we turn around there is something to be done on our home! UGH!

  12. I would hire an organizer and closet do-over person and save our home from all the crap spilling out of our garage, hall closet, and bedroom closets stat!

    (No need to visit my blog today in return, ladies. It was down over the weekend and I have nothing new for you to comment on. πŸ™‚ )

    • Oh NO! Having a blog down is SO annoying! UGH. And I am 100% with you on the need for some serious closet updating!

  13. Renovations! Our Disney trip was paid for, but we realized it would have been thousands of dollars if we had to pay for it ourselves. And..it would have taken years to save for it, and it would have all happened in the blink of an eye – a week.
    I’d rather have something lasting, and in the space we spend most of our time in. I want a whole new master bathroom with a spa tub! And I want it now.
    Then I’d pray that we’d somehow get another all expenses paid trip, as unlikely as that sounds!

    • Yeah, Disney is a total bank breaker! We still have not recovered from it and we went three years ago! πŸ˜‰ I do agree that something for the home does really stand the test of time!

  14. My daughter and I have been saving for what seems like centuries for a vacay to Europe, only stupid house stuff keeps popping up that I end up spending our savings on – so this is a no brainer for me – 10k will definitely go towards a vacay – even if we come back to an exploded septic tank!

    • Yeah, there is nothing worse than having to dip into the vacation fund for stupid house repairs…I am totally feeling your pain!

  15. When we first moved into our house I called the color of the walls “baby diarrhea” color. Three years later, still the same color and just no motivation to make changes. I’m used to it now. Or maybe my eyes are failing more and it’s harder to see. I’d go with the trip.

    • LOL Stacey! I know exactly what you mean…our walls were hideous when we moved in and yet it took at least eight years before we changed them! πŸ˜‰

  16. Three words: Vay-cay-shun! The happy memories will make up for the everyday icky surroundings. Plus Z’s still too young to renovate anything that wouldn’t be destroyed in minutes.

    • So true Liz! I feel like for me there is just so much to do around here that even changing one thing would not be enough!

  17. Hmmm. We vacation every June with our 5 grown children (4) spouses and 13 grandkids. My husband and I always need two vacations or at least several long weekends to recover from the week with the kids,
    but not this year. No Vacations.
    We have put off kitchen and bath renovations far too long. It’s becoming dangerous.
    I wish we could do both, I love the memories.
    We are working on some less expensive memory making for this summer like kid labor for our reno projects.

    • I think kid labor sounds like the perfect answer! They will learn some valuable life skills and you will get some quality time with them! Genius! πŸ™‚

  18. I need the home renovation. New carpets, doors and moulding and kitchen cabinet refacing. I think that might cost more than $10K, though.

    • That is my fear with my house as well…that really 10K would be a drop in the bucket for what it really needs!

  19. Ok Seriously. I am in knots over this one. Thanks guys. However, you are hard task masters and if I MUST just stick to one or the other I choose … Home reno. Whole I have been without a dishwasher for 24 years (AHEM! YEP!) I am in need of a new garage. Current one leaks worse than Niagara Falls. It could one day fall on my car which would mean no driving which would certainly put the kibosh on any travel let alone a long distance trip because I couldn’t drive anywhere and that would put me in a mad, mad panic as I simply cannot wash all of my dishes by hand every single day I need to get out and go to friends, family and/or a restaurant at least once in a while. SO! Huge pause for a breath… I pick reno. Done. Thank you.

    • I LOVE how seriously you are taking this Kelly! It really makes all the work on these questions worth it! πŸ™‚ And seriously, 24 years??!! HOW? WHY? HOW?!

  20. Hands down, home renovation. I don’t even have to debate it. Just the thought of what I could do with $10k has me smiling…and a bit sad that this is not a real situation!!!

    • You go for it Parri…here is hoping that you travel the world before the motorized cart days set in! πŸ˜‰

  21. HARD! Obviously the renovations last longer but we did a bunch of renovations when we moved in and now? I wish I’d kept the money, waited another year to buy, and gotten something that didn’t need the work. So for today, I’ll choose vacation.

    • I know exactly what you mean…we did a bunch of stuff to our house when we moved in, and I wish we had gotten a different house.

  22. Vacation!!! And, with $10,000 I could just stay a bit extra because it would definitely include the beach and would probably be in Hawaii!!!

    • Sure Patti…you can put it towards a down payment…that is like the biggest renovation of them all! πŸ™‚

    • HA HA HA! Great way to look at it…kids need something productive to do after a vacation, right?! πŸ˜‰

  23. This is one of your tougher questions (for me, at least). I’ve been reading everyone’s comments to see if anyone could sway me. I see the renovations as having a long-term value, but I probably won’t be in this house for another 12 years so it won’t be to my long-term benefit. The vacation would be amazing and the kids are old enough to remember it so I think I would take the vacation. My frugal hubby would object to no end, and my practical side is saying “no way” but a trip to Italy or Hawaii would be amazing. And we’d never spend the money that way otherwise.

    • I know exactly what you mean Stephanie…I feel like we would never do it unless it was a situation like this, too!

    • You are so right Kris! Y’all would definitely make a lifetime of memories with your boys at this age! πŸ™‚

  24. VACATION! The boys are getting to be the perfect age to travel and yes, we’re going to Spain but I have to work my butt off for the first part of that trip! I want to lounge on a beach in Hawaii for at least 2 weeks.

  25. hmmmm…. as nice as a vacay sounds, I think I’d go with the renovations. My kitchen and bathroom desperately need some work! And since that’s where I spend most of my time, I think that would make me happier in the long run.

  26. I’d have to say a vacation because we rent and there is no way I am dropping 10k into a house that’s not my own! I would take the 10k and definitely do a cruise, either Hawaii or Europe.

  27. Ooh, I don’t even have to think about this. I would go around the world, sometimes staying in hotels but other times staying with locals just so I don’t blow the whole budget πŸ˜‰ I would love to add more continents to my Visited list- like Australia! And Africa! And..okay, everywhere.

  28. I couldn’t scroll down fast enough. No doubt about it. Home renovation. We are ALMOST done. We have the kitchen and the dining room left, plus the pool door and the sliding glass doors to the patio and we are Done. Done. Done. It’s been a long 15 years but we did it. We bout the house without a front door and a great room floor and a dining room. We’ve come a long way. It took three months to make it livable. And in those first three months the underground sewer went out on us and we had to get it pumped out and had to have a new drain field put in. Fun, eh? There went our 10K for the kitchen. So, if you’re handing out 10K, I’ll take it please, for my kitchen.

  29. I was going to say I would split it 50/50 but then I realized that’s not an option in this fun hypothetical.

    Hmm… despite the fact that I share a 1-BR apartment with a bf and a 60-lb boxer mix AND I work from home… I’d still have to go with the experience of a vacation away. See “work from home” part πŸ™‚ It’s good to get away.

  30. There is no doubt that the wise thing to do would be to spend it on home improvement. I need a ton of improvements. But I would totally spend it on the vacation. No question.

  31. If $10k was enough to do the home renovations I want, I would totally pick that. But I’d really need an extra zero on the end to make it work. So I’d take the money and run to Disney World…just making sure that we also used some of that money for bringing along some kind of help with us.

  32. TOTALLY WOULD DO A RENOVATION!!! Oh how I dare to dream!!! Vacation sounds nice- but the renovation would be appreciated every darn day… we have one bathroom that has stood completely GUTTED- waiting for funding to be rebuilt. We have a basement that flooded…floors all pulled out leaving the lovely paint chipped cement for the kids to roll around on…

    Those two things are probably on our priority list!! lol

  33. One question. Are you giving away $10K? You seem to have some serious rules so I’m thinking if I pick the right answer I might win. (P.S. Loved the video of the tantruming toddler).

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