Should I add a half bath to my home?

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The number of bathrooms in a home is a major selling point for buyers. Most house hunters hope for at least two full bathrooms, but toilets are a big plus because they’re convenient for guests and won’t compromise homeowners’ privacy.

If you are a current homeowner without a toilet, you may be wondering if adding one could improve the functionality of your home and potentially add more value to it. Let’s examine this project in a little more detail.

What is a half bath?

A half bath, also known as a powder room or guest bathroom, has only two of the four main components of the bathroom – usually a toilet and sink.

Today they are standard in many households, providing guests with a place to freshen up, while we can hide our dirty laundry, prescription bottles, toiletries, etc. in our private bathrooms.

“Many homeowners add half baths to their basements,” said Beth Graham of the Beth Graham Appraisals. “With so many people now working from home, we see a lot of offices, home gyms, playgrounds, etc. in the basement. If you can squeeze in a small half bath it offers great convenience and potential value. “

How much added value does a half bath bring?

The National Association of Home Builders reports that adding a half bath increases the value of an average home by 10%.

“As with any renovation, you may not get a dollar-for-dollar return on investment, but a bathroom is one of those places where you always see value,” said Graham. “And if you don’t go overboard with your design or finish, you will likely get a decent return on investment.”

As with any large project, REALTORS® suggests that you first determine the current value of your property and compare its properties to other homes in your area.

“If many of the homes in your neighborhood have full baths, adding to your home could not only add value but also improve your marketability to sell,” said Graham.

What are some things to watch out for?

Aside from watching neighborhood comparisons, there are a few other things to consider when making the decision to add a half bath. One consideration is the location of your pipes.

So before planning a demo day, it’s a good idea to consult a professional building contractor and / or plumber to make sure your plans are feasible and everything is being done correctly. As with any remodeling project, check with your community to make sure you are following the correct building codes.

Graham also says it’s important to analyze your floor plan and think about whether a toilet makes sense for your home.

“If it takes up significant usable space or doesn’t blend in seamlessly with your layout, it may not be the right project for your home,” she said. “For example, many people don’t like toilets that lead directly to the kitchen. So if this is the only place you can put one, it might not be worth the cost. If converting a closet into a toilet means you have limited storage space on the ground floor, that could be a deterrent for future buyers as well. “

For more home improvement tips and information, follow the Greater Lansing Association of REALTORS® on Facebook.

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