It's possible that the garage isn't the first room that comes to mind when you think about upgrading your home, whether you're planning to sell your house in the near future or you're looking to add value over the long term. The garage serves as a place for many homeowners to store items and work on projects, so aesthetics are typically not a priority in this space. A finished garage, on the other hand, is one of the potential tools you have at your disposal if you are looking for a novel approach to impress prospective buyers. But when it comes to selling your home, does having a finished garage really add value? The response to this question is dependent on the goals you wish to achieve as well as the type of customer you want to bring in.
If you are in the market to buy or sell a home, you are aware of the significance of the finishings and furnishings that can transform a potential buyer who is hesitant into a client who is willing to sign on the dotted line. Did you know that a finished garage can also add to the resale value of your home? Some of the rooms in your home, such as bathrooms and kitchens, that have been updated, as well as new paint jobs and perfect staging, can attract attention and generate excitement.
Everyone anticipates that the other rooms will be up to par, but the added surprise of a finished garage that can be used as a workable space is a delightful surprise for everyone as soon as they open the door and discover that they are getting something in addition to what they expected. In point of fact, according to one of the most prominent home builders in Ontario, a finished garage can bring in the same amount of additional financial benefit as an additional bedroom located inside the main structure of the home.
The key to successfully creating that additional space is to make it feel cosy and inviting, like a space that can actually be used, by equipping it with lighting, finished flooring, weatherproofing, and storage that can actually be used. You need to get the gears turning in their heads so that when they leave, they think, "That garage could work well as a rec room, playroom, gym, or any number of other things."
Take a look at the variety of garage makeovers we offer here.
What is a "finished garage" exactly?
Depending on the architectural style of your house, "finishing" a garage could mean one of several different things. We are going to make use of a definition that is fairly general in nature and will be applicable to the vast majority of recently constructed homes.
When it's all said and done, the finished garage needs to have the same fundamental qualities as the other rooms in the house.
This indicates that there should be no visible ductwork, electrical components, studs, or beams anywhere in the house. If you have drywall installed throughout the rest of your home, you should also instal it in the garage. It's possible that you'll need to instal insulation, heating and cooling systems, or both in the garage, depending on where you live. Tile, epoxy, or even exposed concrete can be used for the floor, but it should be sealed to prevent water damage and leaks.
Lighting and ventilation are also very important factors to consider. A room that is well-lit and has a fan that is strategically placed can go a long way towards creating an atmosphere that is more comfortable and inviting.
Beams and ductwork should be included in the design of your home if it has a rustic cabin aesthetic or an industrial design motif, respectively. You can technically consider your garage "finished" once you've given it the same level of attention to detail as the rest of the house.
What does a finished garage do to the home appraisal?
This is the point at which the proverbial rubber meets the road.
I contacted several real estate appraisers working in some of the most active real estate markets in the country to enquire as to whether or not they factored in the presence of a finished garage when determining the value of a home and whether or not this made a difference.
It turns out that doing so does make a difference, albeit not nearly as much as you would have hoped.
When you factor in the cost of drywall, paint, flooring, and garage storage, a standard garage renovation can easily run several thousand dollars.
The cost of the storage cabinets is going to make up a significant portion of that total, but including their value in the appraisal is pointless. An appraisal of real estate only looks at the things that are included in the house itself. The majority of storage solutions for garages will not qualify because they are portable and can be taken with you when you move.
The only remaining components are the drywall and the flooring. In most cases, the increase in value of the house is less than fifty percent of the amount that you paid for it. In general, you can expect an increase of approximately one thousand dollars in the value of your home.
Beyond the numbers: adding "curb appeal."
It seems that having a finished garage has very little to no effect on the value of your home. However, there is a possibility that you can improve the aesthetic appeal of the outside of your home. It's possible that that's just as good.
What exactly is the "kerb appeal"? The term "kerb appeal" refers to anything about your house that makes it stand out from other houses in the neighbourhood that have similar characteristics (these houses are referred to as "comps").
My mother worked as a real estate agent in Pennsylvania when I was growing up there. I've been hearing a lot about preparing homes for sale to prospective buyers.
She would spend countless hours guiding her clients through the myriad of minute nuances that would make the most favourable first impression on prospective house purchasers.
More people would be interested in purchasing a house if they thought it made a good first impression. The home was sold in less time and for a price that was more in line with the asking price.
What exactly does this have to do with the garage that you have?
People anticipate that the garage will be cluttered and unfinished. If you don't believe me, try taking a drive through your neighbourhood on a Saturday afternoon. You might be surprised at what you see. Because their garages are usually cluttered with old things, most people have no choice but to park their cars in the driveway.
When it comes to making your home stand out from the crowd, having a garage that is finished, clean, and organised goes a long way.
What about converting your garage to a gym or an additional bedroom?
This is where things start to get complicated. There are a lot more steps that need to be taken if you want to transform your garage into something other than a place to park your vehicle.
Nest.com estimates that the value of a home with even a single-car garage can increase by as much as $5,000. If you decide to convert your garage into another room, it is reasonable to assume that you will suffer a loss of at least that amount of money.
Many prospective homeowners, including myself, won't even consider purchasing a house if it doesn't have a garage.
In the event that you intend to transform an area that is not currently suitable for human habitation into one that is, you will be required to obtain permits from the city government in your area. They are concerned about the workers' safety as well as the quality of the work that is being done.
When you decide to sell the house, they have to take into consideration not only the safety of your family but also the safety of the new owner. It is possible that the value of your home will decrease significantly if the conversion you undertake does not adhere to the relevant building codes.
If you are considering converting your garage into another space, such as a gym or workshop, my advice is to make the conversion in a way that will allow you to easily reverse it in the future, when you are ready to sell the house. I recommend hiring professionals for garage renovations of a more permanent nature, such as converting the space into an additional bedroom, rather than attempting the project on your own.
The range of garage renovations in Melbourne offered by Hitch Property Constructions is the most comprehensive. Take a look at it over here.
Finished vs. converted garage: How each impacts your home's value
It is important for you to understand right off the bat that turning your garage into additional living space (which would mean removing the door to the garage) is never a good idea if you intend to sell your home in the near future. A home that does not have a garage that is in working order will have a lower value and be more difficult to sell.
"My recent experience in a garage that had been converted into living space taught me that doing so can lower the value of the home.
"The garage had been converted into a sizable bonus room by the seller; however, it did not have a bathroom that was attached to it, and its location within the house was awkward. It was necessary for him to restore the space to its previous use as a functional garage before he could sell the house."
Your home's value won't suffer if you finish your garage, but it also isn't likely to rise as a result of the addition of this improvement.
Whether or not a finished garage adds value to a house is a question that can only be answered on a case-by-case basis. One of my customers might not give a hoot about it at all, while to another, it might mean everything in the world.
How much does it cost to finish the garage?
Finished garages typically feature additional bells and whistles in addition to textured and painted drywall, such as resurfaced flooring and built-in storage, amongst other luxuries.
Once you begin adding all of those extras onto the project, the total cost to complete your garage will be approximately $9,970 or more, depending on how many extras you add. Spending ten grand on a room that is primarily utilised for parking cars is an excessive amount of money to spend.
The conclusion is that it is not a good use of money to complete the garage renovations just before selling the house.
The garage is one area that most homeowners need to spend some time and effort cleaning and organising before selling their home. Rather than spending money on finishing the garage, one would be much better off investing it in home improvement projects that offer a high return on investment.
Having said that, there are certain circumstances in which a finished garage is a requirement. For example, if you are selling a luxury home for $1.5 million or if you live in an area where all of your neighbours have finished garages, you absolutely need to have one.
Get professional advice before you make any moves.
On the basis of their knowledge and experience with buyer trends and popular home renovations for your area and price point, a top local real estate agent will be able to tell you with absolute certainty whether or not finishing a garage will result in an increase in a home's value in your neighbourhood.
For instance, if your home already has a finished garage but is located in an area where such structures are neither common nor highly valued, this feature may still be considered an asset. In addition, prospective buyers will appreciate it if you highlight the fact that the garage has been finished in your marketing materials. Extras like that could be the deciding factor for potential buyers to choose your home over others on the market instead of those of your competitors.
There is a market for finished garages, even though it is relatively small even for a market that can be considered a niche. It's possible that you'll find a buyer who is willing to pay more for a finished garage, such as a hobbyist who plans to use it as a workshop or a gearhead mechanic who wants a polished place for his classic cars. In either case, this buyer will be a rare find.
On the other hand, a seasoned real estate agent in your area may advise you not to bother, in which case you will have saved several thousand dollars.
How a Finished Garage Impacts Appraisal Value
If increasing the property's appraised value is the only reason for your home improvement project, then finishing the garage might not be the best use of your money when compared to other types of renovations. Even though it may have an ominous atmosphere, that only tells a small part of the story. Even if it does not add a significant amount to the home's market value by itself, having a finished garage can be a significant factor in convincing potential buyers that your property is the best option for meeting their requirements. This is true even if the home's market value does not increase as a direct result of having the finished garage.
The "Wow Factor" of a Finished Garage
Even though a finished garage might not add to the appraised value of a home, it can certainly be a factor in persuading a potential buyer that the home is the best option for them. It has the potential to set your home apart from the competition and has a significant appeal for prospective buyers who are enthusiastic about DIY home improvement projects. It is ultimately here that the value of finishing your garage will be realised; however, given that it is subjective, it will only add value for the appropriate buyer.
Considering the Cost of a Finished Garage
Putting the finishing touches on the garage won't break the bank, but it will cost more than some of the other remodelling projects in the house. The preliminary investment is substantial given that the typical cost of completing a garage comes in at around $10,000. The purchaser, as well as the observer, is the best person to judge whether or not the expenditure was worthwhile.
Why Finishing Is Better Than Converting
If you intend to renovate your garage, you should finish the space first rather than turn it into something else entirely by removing the garage door. In the end, a converted garage is nothing more than another room, whereas a finished garage keeps the same personality and functionality as a standard garage.
A Middle Ground for Your Garage
There is a happy medium to be found if you want to increase the allure of your garage without detracting from its value when you go to sell your house. You can give your garage a new, appealing look without making the financial investment that would be required to finish the room by giving it a thorough cleaning, organising it neatly, and fixing any obvious maintenance issues.
Even though finishing your garage might not add to the property's resale value in a specific way, it can be a significant objective factor in the process of attracting the ideal buyer. A finished garage may be very appealing to the right buyer, but that does not mean that all buyers will be interested in it. Your real estate agent is in the best position to advise you regarding whether you should complete the garage or whether it would be more prudent to invest those funds in another room.
How a Finished Garage Can Increase Your Home's Resale Value
Cover the Concrete
One improvement that will pay for itself in the long run is flooring. Concrete floors are not only unattractive but also uncomfortable, so you should consider covering them with a surface that is more suited to the atmosphere you want to achieve in the room. For those who do not intend to bring their vehicles inside, the flooring options are the same as they are throughout the rest of the house and include laminates, wood, tiles, and even carpeting. An investment in a coating such as Rhino Floortex Coating is the best course of action for those who want to ensure that their flooring remains durable and accessible to vehicles. The surface of the cracked and dusty concrete is covered with a coating that is clean, long-lasting, and aesthetically pleasing.
Wrap the Walls
Your garage, which has exposed insulation and wooden beams, does not appear to be an appropriate place for storing golf clubs, much less a large-screen television or guests in the event that you decide to convert it into a living space. Altering the walls in your space can help you make it feel more inviting; for example, you should use the appropriate insulation, drywall, and a wall covering such as paint or paper.
Ample storage space is one feature that many buyers are already looking for when they make a purchase. Installing space-saving storage cabinets, floating shelving, and hooks to help get items organised better than labelled boxes on the floor is a great way to assist them in crossing off a few items on their list.
Designate the Space
Assist potential buyers in visualising what their garage could become by helping them create spaces that are both functional and appealing. Create a workspace by designating a portion of one wall or a corner. Put in a workbench, rig up a pegboard to hold your various tools, and stage the area so that it can be used. Take the guesswork out of where your handyman should work to complete household or occupational tasks. Many people want this, so don't leave it up to chance. Don't overlook the importance of providing plenty of ambient lighting, either!
Map out an Entertainment Zone
A buyer will probably be interested in a usable entertainment space if it is available, just like they might be in a workbench. You can stage it with seating (an old couch and table will do the trick), or you can go all out by installing a television, surround sound, and seating for the game! Use your imagination, and make sure that it is both usable and convertible, as well as appealing to a wide audience.
Are you looking for garage renovations in Melbourne? No need to look any further. You have nothing to worry about when you hire Hitch Property Constructions.
So does a finished or converted garage affect the value of your home?
It might seem like a good idea to convert your garage into additional living space by removing the garage door, but doing so could make it more difficult to sell your home in the future. In order to sell their home, some homeowners have been forced to remodel the space so that it can once again serve as a practical garage; alternatively, the home must remain on the market for significantly longer. It's safe to say that finishing a garage won't decrease the value of a home, but it's also likely that it won't increase the value. It is subjective, which means that a finished garage could be exactly what the buyer is looking for, causing your home to stand out among the others that are for sale, or it could be just a "nice to have," with the buyer focusing on other aspects of the home as the primary selling point. Either way, your home could benefit from having a finished garage.
FAQs About Garage Renovation
Your home's value won't suffer if you finish your garage, but it also isn't likely to rise as a result of the addition of this improvement.
The value of your home could increase by as much as $5,000 if you instal a garage large enough for one car. A garage with space for two cars is even more desirable. If you decide to convert your garage into another room, you will lose at least that amount of money in the process.
If you have an attached garage that is adequately insulated, it can act as a buffer zone for your house, protecting the climate that is found inside the home and increasing the level of comfort in all of the rooms that are adjacent to the garage. Your home will lose more of both its heated and cooled air if it does not have insulation.
Your home's value can be increased without a significant increase in your expenses by applying a coating to the garage floor. This is due to the fact that using an epoxy coating to transform an otherwise uninteresting concrete garage floor into something more visually appealing does not require a significant financial investment.
A garage is considered finished when it has drywall covering the beams and gaps in the space. Insulation and electrical work might be present or they might not be. When a garage has been finished off, we sometimes call it a "converted" garage.