Does Converting A Garage Add Value To A Home?

I was looking at potential “fixer uppers” to flip.  There was one home that had a lot of “potential” – meaning it needed a lot of work.  It looked like someone had already been fixing up this particular home but ran out of money and decided to list it.  One of the “upgrades” this person had done was to convert the garage into another bedroom.  It was originally a 3 bedroom house with the bedrooms being on the second floor.  The listing showed this home now a 4 bedroom house.

Home owners want a garage for storage and to park their car

Home owners want a garage to park their car or for storage or for both.  If homeowners are looking for a 4 bedroom home, they want a 4 bedroom home.  Not a 3 bedroom + garage/bedroom/office/den or whatever the case may be.

Converting a garage into another room actually devalues a home.  It does NOT add value.

garage turned lounge, found on homedit
Photo: Found on HomeDIT.com This homeowner has successfully converted their garage into another living space which can easily be converted back to its original use.

 Does that mean you should never convert a garage to another room?

Not if you can help it. But there are some situations, where family needs may dictate a garage conversion.  For example, an elderly parent has moved in unexpectedly and you need a ground floor bedroom, or you need that space for an office/studio or a family room.

But if you do need to convert a garage into another room for family needs, just know that when you sell your home, you will drastically reduce the number of people that may consider purchasing your home.  Most people do not want a converted garage.  But you say it only take “one” person to buy your home.  True enough, but it may take longer to find that “one” person who wants a converted garage.

Also, if you are converting your garage into another living space, try to convert it so that you can easily convert it back to a garage when you sell.  The photo above shows a successful garage conversion which can easily be converted back for selling purposes.

I’ve seen some garage conversions that have been tastefully & successful and have sold within the price range they were asking for.  It’s not impossible to do this BUT you’re definitely narrowing the market on who wants to buy a house without a garage. It may take longer for the house to sell, especially in a slower real estate market.

And for that fixer upper that we were looking to flip?  We walked away from it.  There were too many issues that needed attention (including reconverting the “4th bedroom” back into the garage) that would not make the flip profitable.

Debi Collinson is a Designer. Stager.  Renovator.  Blogger.  She has been helping clients make their home stunning while adding value to their home when they’re ready to sell.

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