It’s always a good thing to know how much your house is worth in the real estate market. Although pricing quotations will change from person to person, a general idea of the worth of a house helps the homeowner assess the viability of future renovations.
Balconies are just one of the many features that can help boost the value of a house. Adding value to a house is advantageous because it entails that your house can support more activities and provide more amenities.
Balconies, if built correctly, do add value to a house. Balconies normally add additional floor space to a house along with an aesthetically pleasing look. Balconies can also function as both an indoor and outdoor space, thereby increasing the space’s functionality.
Many factors add value to real estate, ranging from the location all the way to the amenities that the structure offers. Real estate value can be used as a basis for determining how well your house can provide for its users.
In this article, we’ll be going into how houses are valued, how you can add value to your home, and how spaces like balconies actually affect the value of a house. Read on if you plan on either purchasing, selling, or increasing the value of a home.
What are balconies?
Balconies are often a cantilevered space, not supported by columns, and present on the upper floors. They usually offer a view or serve as an extension of indoor space by adding an outdoor element to the overall upper floor plans.
Balconies work for almost every design, as long as there’s an appropriate amount of space for you to enjoy the view of something. This additional space can serve as both a way for people to look into your house and, at the same time, may affect the privacy of their neighbors.
Aside from the additional space that they provide, balconies also provide some extra utility to a house:
- In terms of structure, the force from the weight of a balcony can be a cantilever that can help the columns carry the weight above as long as the floor and columns below can support it.
- In terms of improving the quality of space, balconies can provide extra shade for the areas below them, while also providing space for light fixtures. The opening to the balcony from the inside can also help promote air flow within the house. A well-ventilated space will always be a good thing to have.
Adding additional spaces to your house
It’s quite possible to add additional spaces to your current house as long as your home can handle the additional loads that it entails.
For example, if you want to add a rooftop area to your house, the structural design of the house would need to be able to handle the additional loads required to have a functioning rooftop space. Most structural designs for roofs only consider the weight of the roof and the forces of the elements, so this type of renovation will cost you extra.
Adding additional spaces to your house can also be seen as an investment and, at the same time, as a luxury. This can range from developing some free outdoor space to redesigning the entire floor plan to accommodate more activity. The needs and programming of houses are always changing; the architect designed for a family of 3 would not work well for a family of 6.
It isn’t uncommon for some buyers to buy a cheaper house and decide to renovate it. A poorly conditioned house in a great location could easily be fixed up and repurposed into something more in line with the new owners’ needs.
Do you need to hire an architect for adding a balcony to your house?
Yes, although hiring an architect does not automatically mean that it would cost a lot of money. The point of hiring an architect is to ensure that the house is safe to live in and is designed to be enjoyable.
A balcony may seem so simple because it’s literally just an elevated rectangle attached to a house. However, remember that nothing is quite as simple when related to buildings.
In most cases, you would need an architect to add a balcony to your house. Since the balcony will most probably be cantilevered with no columns underneath to support it, the architect will have to plan accordingly with the engineers to ensure that the already built house can handle the balcony’s dimensions and length.
Not to mention, for this type of renovation, you will also need a building permit. This is to ensure that the additional space added will not infringe on the current compliance of your house with the building laws of your area. There may be some ordinances that do not allow balconies within a certain distance of another house.
How is a balcony constructed?
Since balconies are relatively small with limited space and won’t be furnished or occupied by many people, you can more or less use any material you want for this type of renovation. Remember that the material you use will determine the structural design, as some materials are better at controlling the forces that a balcony applies compared to others.
Once the local building official has permitted the balcony renovation, the construction can now begin. Most likely, for a month, the room that’s having a balcony added to it, as well as the area below, will become inaccessible.
Also, expect construction workers to be going in and outside your house, bring materials, and access the construction area. A suitable and fixed work schedule and proper house programming can alleviate some of the privacy concerns and lifestyle disruptions that come with a renovation.
A big mistake that many homeowners make is not planning out their living arrangements during a renovation. They don’t anticipate that some house areas are inaccessible and adjust as soon as it’s already happening. As a room gets removed or becomes unusable, the programming of the entire floor will have to change to accommodate the needs of the users during this period of time.
What is the value of a house?
The value of a house is a price set by the real estate market, in which multiple factors are assessed to come up with a reasonable conclusion as to how much the house is really worth.
Even if you do not intend on selling your house any time, this can be useful in determining what areas of your house you can improve upon. Most of the time, renovations usually come from a need. However, it isn’t uncommon for people to not know what they need. Most homeowners adjust their lifestyles following what their space provides. Given the proper funding and the right planning, your house can be tailored to your lifestyle and even support it.
You can turn to a real-estate consultant and see what makes your house valuable and also the things that lower its value. For example, you might have a really well-built house that will last for a long, relatively long time, but your garage can only fit in one car.
Remember that all renovations can be considered an investment and added functionality that you will eventually use. Some renovations can even end up saving you money in the long run. If you pay for a storage locker, you can easily get the same job done with a garage renovation, for example, and if you no longer need it for storage, you can easily convert it into parking.
Feel free to check out our step by step guide on how to extend a garage for more on that.
In terms of aesthetics, the design of a house cannot be quantified into an accurate number. The saying that “beauty is in the eyes of the beholder” rings true here.
Unless a famous architect designs your house, it’s best not to rely on your house’s aesthetic design when determining its value. Most buyers are practical today and prioritize more on how space actually functions rather than how it looks.
How do balconies increase the value of a house?
Many factors contribute to the value of the house. Some of these may not be in the homeowner’s control, while others are. Listed below are the factors that will affect how much your house is worth and how an added balcony could help add to that value.
Balconies add to the design of the house
How well the house is designed plays a big role in how much a house is worth. In fact, some designs are made with a small budget but are worth a lot considering how aesthetically pleasing and functional space actually is. A well-designed house that feels good to be in will definitely increase the house’s value, and a balcony will definitely add value if it’s designed well and esthetically pleasing.
Balconies add to the amenities of the house
The amenities of the house include extra things that aren’t really necessary but elevate the users’ quality of life. This can range anywhere from extra garage space for parking or to a swimming pool. Amenities are classified based on the additional opportunities for activity and use that come with the house; balconies are also included in this category. It adds additional space and functionality.
Balconies add to the size of the house
The size of the house entails that there’s more indoor space to do more things. House size is used as a marker to determine how much room for activity there is. Although a bigger house does not entail that a house is better by any means, it’s a quantifiable positive trait that can also be used to bump up the value of a house. Balconies do, however, add additional space to a house.
Balconies can highlight the location of the house by adding a “view”
Arguably one of the biggest factors determining real estate value, location really affects how much your house is worth. The rationale behind this is that a good location gives easier access to places where people need to be. Different factors for choosing a location could be either work, school, neighborhood, etc.
People move around for different reasons, and where they choose to settle is important. The number one question that people always ask is, “where do you live” rather than “what’s your house like.” The location is the macro-scale of living, it’s often treated as an extension, and the quality of the nearby environment definitely affects how people there live.
If you live in a nice area with an esthetically pleasing surrounding, then a balcony can highlight the surrounding area by adding a backdrop or “view” to the balcony space and your house.
Lot size of the house
Lot size can be used to determine the potential of a house for future renovations and opportunities for outdoor recreation. Many people don’t really notice, but the condition of the outdoor environment also heavily affects how the entire house looks from the outside. Generally, a bigger lot size will also automatically entail that you paid more; thus, the bigger the lot means, the bigger the value will be for your house.
Balconies can improve the condition of the house
Houses aren’t built to last forever. Just like everything else, houses are also susceptible to deterioration. The type of deterioration your house is experiencing will determine much it will lower the value of your home. Something as simple as a dilapidated living room wall can easily be fixed, but something more serious like a rotting foundation could cost you a lot of money and scare away many buyers. A new balcony can help to improve the condition of the house.
Balconies can improve the presentability of the house
Maintaining your house and making sure that it’s kept in good shape will increase the value of your house by a significant margin. Even a simple clean-up and repaint of the house can increase the value by a lot. When people buy products, they always want something that looks brand new and well kept, or in other words, mint-condition.
Land value around the house
Funny enough, over time, the value of your house tends to depreciate if left unmaintained, but the value of the land tends to rise at all times. Although this does not directly correlate with the value of the house, the land and the type of soil is also another factor that can be considered when valuing a house.
At the end of the day, there is no real set-in-stone value for any house and lot. This is because every individual value some aspect more than others. Although they are tangible and set in stone for valuing certain aspects, the rest really depends on their tastes and interests.
What about the sentimental value of a house?
Although real estate value is always an important thing and something that a homeowner should consider, the sentimental value of a house can never be bought or made. In architecture, even if a building is designed perfectly and looks beautiful, there is no guarantee that human beings will form an intimate relationship with the said space. The home is like no other building; it’s an abode in which people go for rest.
There is a concept in architecture called the spirit of a place. The spirit of a given area is given and determined by the relationship of the people with it. An example of this phenomenon is your high school building, which might have some meaning to you considering all the memories you made growing up.
Adding space to a house will increase its value, no matter what the additional space may be. The additional amenities and opportunities that extra space provides will surely be of value. The necessary steps for these types of renovations may be costly and will be quite an annoyance for the time being, but it must be worked for to be obtained with all good things.
House value should always be considered, but the sentimental value and the spirit of the place should also not be taken for granted. What may seem just like an adjustment to parents for more economic reasons might be saddening to children who grew up in the place.