When it comes to home renovations, adding space to your residence is often a good idea. It not only gives you more square footage to live in, but it also is one of the best things you can do to add value to your property.
Room additions are an opportunity not only to add space but to add function. For this reason, a renovation is a major decision, one with inevitable financial and personal implications. There are so many things to think about when deciding on a home addition that it can be difficult to know where to start.
The information below covers nine of the most popular room additions you can make to your home, going over the advantages of each, as well as any drawbacks to consider. It will give you some ideas on how to optimize the space in your home so that you can enjoy it and reap the financial benefits.
Renovation Assessment Basics
Only you can ultimately decide which home renovation projects are best for your lifestyle and circumstances. But there are a few things to consider.
One is whether a particular space is being used or already needs work. For instance, turning an unused nook in your home into a small dining or lounge area is doubly advantageous. It eliminates space that is otherwise wasted and makes it usable.
Likewise, if there is a space in your home that needs repairs or upgrades, it may be worth thinking outside the box to consider the best uses for it. For example, if your attic needs repairs and you have been considering adding a room to your home, it will be more cost-effective to tackle the project in one fell swoop.
This is not a post about personal finances, but one thing to think about is whether the renovation is a sound financial move for you. Across the board, room additions are a good investment, but you should be comfortable undertaking them, especially a major one. In short, you do not want to adversely affect your personal finances only for the sake of the return on investment down the road.
Beyond your budget, the other financial consideration is your local real estate market. If you are doing a renovation purely for investment purposes, it is worth taking some time to assess whether the market supports the type of room additions you are considering.
There are two main options for adding a bedroom to your home: converting space or building onto your existing home. Many people are surprised to learn that, in most situations, the foundation and roof of a home can be extended to accommodate a “bumped-out” bedroom.
Hiring the right contractor will ensure that the room addition conforms to the rest of the house. They will make it look natural from the exterior of the home.
One of the obvious advantages of this option is that it adds square footage to your home. A disadvantage is that you can expect it to cost more than most renovations that do not involve building onto the home. (Although, the extra square footage can easily offset this difference in resale value).
Adding a bedroom to your home will almost certainly increase its value. How much depends on where you live and your local real estate market.
Besides sheer value, it also helps you appeal to a wider prospective buyer audience if you plan to sell your home. Going from a two- to three-bedroom or a three- to four-bedroom home will make it more attractive to larger families or anyone needing more space.
2. Home Office
Doing work from a kitchen table or sofa is fine for a temporary situation––for a few days or even weeks––or for paying bills from time to time. In the long term, having a dedicated workspace can increase productivity and positively impact your personal life by adding balance and structure (i.e., when you are in the office, you are working).
Even if no one in your family works from home, an office can be a natural respite for reading, studying, or paying bills. It also becomes a space where you can store books, stationery, or work-related materials. Otherwise, these often get strewn in other spaces in your home.
There has never been a better time when having an office gives you a huge advantage in terms of reselling your home. Now more than ever people work from home, either in fully remote positions or hybrid ones, due in part to the COVID pandemic. Having a dedicated space to do so has become a major selling point for homes.
This goes for schoolwork as well. Having an area for children to do homework or remote learning can afford the same benefits to them as someone working from home.
Bathroom and kitchen improvements are renowned for being the most expensive renovations you can do to a home. There’s a flip side to this though: they also offer the most return on investment. You can expect to recoup more than 90 of whatever you put into a bathroom remodel if you sell your home.
Note that not getting 100 percent of what you put into a renovation back does not mean you will not recoup the investment in other ways. For instance, an additional bathroom may help attract buyers that you otherwise may not have.
Having an extra bathroom also is a huge plus if you have a growing family, do. a lot of hosting, or have regular out-of-town visitors. It ensures guests have enough privacy and are comfortable.
4. Living Room
Adding a large living area to your home has many advantages. A dedicated living space can be essential for entertaining or relaxing at home on your own. A lot of older homes have a small den, but not a larger living area designed to accommodate more than a handful of people.
Beyond providing more space to spend with guests, a living room also provides separation. For instance, it can be a safe area for kids to play or watch television while adults visit outside or in another room.
For daily living, it offers an area for reading or relaxing, even if other members of your family are engaged in other activities throughout the house. A second living area might double as a playroom that you can also use to keep toys and crafts for young children.
5. Dining Room
Compared to some other items on this list, you may think that a dining room ranks pretty low. There are some good reasons you should reconsider this perspective.
Even if you have a small breakfast table or counter where your family eats most of its meals, these areas tend to get used for other activities. For this reason, they can easily become cluttered.
Sitting down for a meal together can be meaningful, even sacred (think about how central sharing a meal is to most religious holidays). But you don’t have to be religious to realize the benefits of sharing conversation and bonding. This can be particularly refreshing after a long day at work or school.
Having a dedicated dining space has other health benefits as well. Eating while distracted (for instance, by work or while watching television) can lead to overeating. Conversely, eating dinner in a screen-free room allows you to focus on––and enjoy––the food as well as the company and conversation.
Adding a dedicated dining room to your home adds value to it as well. It is something almost any prospective homebuyer would value, and some would consider essential.
6. Sun Room or Porch
With the advent of the COVID pandemic, outdoor living spaces became essential and remain one of the most popular renovations today. They also are often some of the easiest add-on renovations to a home, since they demand minimal disruption to the existing home.
For the same reason, sunrooms or porches are one of the simplest and most economical ways to add square footage to your home. A screened-in porch, for instance, does not need HVAC modifications.
Sunrooms and porches also are a great way to add an outdoor aesthetic to your home. They are perfect for plants that would otherwise struggle indoors, as well as other greenery or even small fountains. This can create a tranquil space for entertaining almost year-round while still being protected from the sun and weather.
7. Powder Room
Powder rooms are a fantastic option for adding comfort and convenience to your home. They are often located adjacent to entertaining areas, although you can add them almost anywhere you like.
The concept of a powder room is that family or guests do not have to trek across the house to use the restroom. Beyond convenience, this has the added benefit of keeping guests out of your other bathrooms, where personal items are stored.
Unlike full bathroom renovations, powder rooms also tend to be relatively inexpensive. This also means a good “bang for your buck,” if you happen to sell your home. The advantages of an extra “half bath” alone can go a long way to attracting a wider range of potential buyers.
Whenever people think of renovations, they think “What is most glamorous?” Sometimes it is best to prioritize the functional over flair. Mudrooms fall into this category
There are several reasons to consider adding a mudroom to your home. The most typical definition of one is a space where you and your family members can remove footwear and garments like hats, coats, or sports gear. They are great for pets that go outside and for keeping leashing and other supplies.
This becomes particularly useful on rainy or snowy days, for kids or pets who have been playing outside, or for anyone who has been playing sports. In short, it helps keep the rest of your home clean and organized by consolidating dirty clothes (and indivdituals) to a particular place.
This brings up another advantage of mudrooms: storage. Foyers or living spaces at the entrance to a home are not ideal places to store belongings or to place outdoor garments. Converting a portion of them to a mudroom solves this problem. This can extend to other items as well, like cleaning supplies, vacuums, mops, and brooms.
9. Finished Basement
Basements are some of the most underused, or misused, spaces in homes. That is because they are often unfinished and not suitable for much else beyond storage.
A basement renovation is a great option for a guest bedroom, entertainment room, or workspace. They also are a popular option for putting in an exercise room.
Finishing a basement also may be more economical than you think. Structural modifications will probably be minimal, and the rest of your home will likely be unaffected by the project. Also, it is often very easy to add HVAC and electrical to these spaces, as they are often in locations near the main components.
It also increases the square footage of your home, since an unfinished basement does not count towards total livable space. An added benefit of finishing your basement is that it will eliminate problems common with these areas. These include mold and pests that can creep in and cause serious problems for your home.
Get Expert Advice on Room Additions
Now that you have an idea of room additions that will add value to your home, you can decide which one is best for you. The important thing is to weigh all the advantages––both personal and financial. For this reason, it is important to hire a reputable contractor who can advise you on all options for designing the home you want.
At Michael James Remodeling, we want you to be closely involved––and enjoy––the entire remodeling process. From planning and design to the final construction, we will help you accomplish your remodeling goals. Reach out to us today for a free consultation.
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