Some home buyers never consider resale value when they buy, and they make the mistake of focusing solely on whether the home suits their needs. You should not make this mistake. If you buy a home with a good resale value, it should be fairly easy to sell if and when that time comes. You should keep the following factors in mind, as they can affect the value.
- Consider resale value as well as your current needs when you buy a home.
- The most important factor in good resale value is location, so choose a home in a desirable location to increase your pool of future buyers.
- Other factors in resale value include number of bedrooms and bathrooms, family space, walk-in closets, and an open floor plan.
Number One Rule of Home Resale Value: Location
You often hear real estate agents repeat the phrase: location, location, location. If you choose a home in a desirable location, chances are that the location will stay desirable, and in turn, will attract a large pool of home buyers later down the road. Alternatively, if the location is less than desirable, it is possible that the future sales price of your home will be less than the prices of other homes in locations that are more desirable. This would likely attract a smaller pool of home buyers.
When it comes to location, you cannot always anticipate changes that will impact your home's resale value, but you can try and you should educate yourself about anything that is already in the works.
Basic Indicators of Good Resale Value
There are some indicators of a home with good resale value regardless of its location. These are the features that buyers will look for in a home.
More than two bedrooms: If almost every home in your neighborhood has only two bedrooms, owning a home with fewer than three bedrooms is not necessarily a drawback. But, it is a drawback if you are trying to attract more buyers since many will prefer to have more rooms. A home with three bedrooms or more is often a better choice to ensure future resale value.
More than one bathroom (including a master bathroom): Buyers will still buy a one-bath home but at a much lower price than expected. When given the choice between a two-bath home and a one-bath home, first-time home buyers will almost always opt for the two-bath home, even if the cost to install a second bath is much less than the price difference between the two homes. Moreover, it is not enough to simply have two or more baths. A home without a master bath may also suffer from a lower resale value.
Family space: A family space is any space in which a group of people can congregate. Whether to entertain friends or host a neighborhood gathering, buyers want an extra room that is spacious and informal. The days of the formal living room and parlors are over.
Ample storage spaces and closets: People today collect too much stuff, and they have to store it somewhere. Walk-in closets are considered almost essential. Homes with small closets are hard to sell.
One level: Even if the sacrifice is yard space, most buyers prefer a one-story home or at least a home with a first-floor master bedroom. But, you should be mindful of your neighborhood.
In neighborhoods with a mix of two-story and one-story homes, you should not buy a single-level home surrounded by multiple-story homes.
Garage: Unless you live in an urban area where most occupants rely mostly on public transportation, you need a place to park your car. Two parking spots are preferable, and if the garage is in a covered, enclosed area, all the better. In some suburban locations, you may encounter resistance to homes with fewer than three parking spots in the garage.
Good flow and open floor plan: Few buyers want a chopped-up, closed-in space. Homebuyers prefer natural light and open spaces, with a common-sense flow that is interconnected without satellite rooms. A wing is acceptable; however, many families with young children do not want the master suite separated from the other bedrooms.
Updated and remodeled: Simple, do-it-yourself home improvements can greatly enhance a home's resale value. The two best rooms to remodel are the kitchen and bathroom. Homebuyers prefer central heat and air, and some loans (such as the energy-efficient mortgage) will provide funds for such updates upon purchase.