In the third part of the renovations and remodeling to boost home price series, we’ll talk about adding a bedroom and converting your loft.
Adding a Bedroom
There are really only two ways you can go when adding a bedroom—either adding a home extension or converting an unused area of your house.
Expanding the actual size of the property is the best way to add value. Extensions may go upward or outward, depending on the space that you have available. However, if adding an extension is not doable for space or money reasons, you can still convert any sufficient space in the basement, the roof space, or convert a home study or office (often this is as simple as removing the office equipment and installing a wardrobe, a bed and few drawers) into an extra bedroom. You will need to make sure that the area that you are planning to convert will meet all of the local requirements for space and safety.
Be aware of the “ceiling value” of the home’s location. If a four-bedroom house is on a street of mainly two and three-bedroom houses, you might find it hard to recoup the cost of adding a fifth or sixth bedroom.
Turning a three-bedroom house into a four-bedroom house using a loft conversion/extension can cost $30,000-$40,000, but can add double that in market value, depending on the location. Loft conversion allows you to utilize potential space. Instead of building an outside extension for the house (which will inevitably consume outside living space), loft conversions can be a very profitable and worthwhile home addition to create usable living space.
This is made easier and more efficient if you work with a professional architect to help you draw up plans that will make the best use of both the available space and the budget that you have allotted to your project. There are many rules, restrictions, and building code issues that need to be followed when considering a loft conversion; the hired architect can help with these. He can also provide answers to problems such as adding windows, strengthening the floors, or increasing the air quality.
Many lofts contain structural features that cannot be changed, such as chimney stacks or heating, ventilation and air-conditioning installations. By drawing up a plan that includes these features, rather than trying to hide them, the end result should be far more functional and attractive.
Make sure you design your loft in a flexible way so that the potential buyer can easily envision using that space in their own way.