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View Full Version : Home and Auto How much does it cost to finish a basement?


BWillie
03-24-2009, 09:33 PM
I know it depends alot of square feet and other factors, but what is a general rule of thumb? I'm looking at houses right now and basically, I will not buy a house without a finished basement. I've noticed that alot of houses are significantly cheaper that I like, but the only thing that gets me away from them is not having a finished basement. I'm kinda in a time crunch, because my FHA 4.7% interest rate only lasts for so long. Hell of a time to buy a house right now.

I don't want to put a room down there or anything. Don't really need a bathroom either. Just a wet bar, some good chiefs memorabilia, and make it a nice rec room. BTW, I am not handy at all. Unless it's something I can learn in a weekend, I ain't doin' it. Any good reputable companies around here that specialize in that kind of thing?

luv
03-24-2009, 09:37 PM
I don't know the answer to your question, but I do know that you will probably pay less for a house with an unfinished basement and finishing it yourself than you will for a house with a finished basement. You're also smart to have someone else do it, especially if you're not handy. You try to do it yourelf, and you'll have the cost of doing it AND having it redone.

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-24-2009, 09:43 PM
$10K on up to whatever you're willing to spend.

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 09:44 PM
How much does a car cost?


How much does food cost?


How much does a Christmas present cost?

how big is a breasticle?

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 09:44 PM
I wouldn't let an unfinished basement be the deal breaker, dude.

That's pretty damn low on the hierarchy of what's really important.

luv
03-24-2009, 09:46 PM
Are you sure you don't want a bathroom near the wet bar? Stairs can be tricky when you're drunk off your ass.

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-24-2009, 09:50 PM
Are you sure you don't want a bathroom near the wet bar? Stairs can be tricky when you're drunk off your ass.
All men need is a floor drain, and every basement has one.

RJ
03-24-2009, 09:50 PM
Carpet doesn't cost very much.

Do you want a basement refrigerator?

Assuming the basement doesn't have a bathroom, how far do you have to go to take a piss?

How finished is finished?

KcMizzou
03-24-2009, 09:51 PM
All men need is a floor drain, and every basement has one.LMAO

Exactly.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 09:51 PM
I wouldn't let an unfinished basement be the deal breaker, dude.

That's pretty damn low on the hierarchy of what's really important.

Yeah, I have strange priorities. I don't even care if my house has a garage. WTF am I gonna do with a garage. As long as I don't live on a busy street. I'm thinking my car will be alright.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 09:53 PM
Carpet doesn't cost very much.

Do you want a basement refrigerator?

Assuming the basement doesn't have a bathroom, how far do you have to go to take a piss?

How finished is finished?

I already have enough refrigerators. I don't need a bathroom in the basement, mainly because that will skyrocket the price of how much it would cost. In a perfect world, it would be nice. But I'm not planning on making it rain. Just want a nice area where I can put a wet bar. Pool table, big screen, and ping pong table. Not for beer pong, but for Ping Pong. Best sport in the world. I love non-cardiovascular sports.

luv
03-24-2009, 09:54 PM
Yeah, I have strange priorities. I don't even care if my house has a garage. WTF am I gonna do with a garage. As long as I don't live on a busy street. I'm thinking my car will be alright.

You get a house, you're gonna need storage.

luv
03-24-2009, 09:55 PM
I already have enough refrigerators. I don't need a bathroom in the basement, mainly because that will skyrocket the price of how much it would cost. In a perfect world, it would be nice. But I'm not planning on making it rain. Just want a nice area where I can put a wet bar. Pool table, big screen, and ping pong table. Not for beer pong, but for Ping Pong. Best sport in the world. I love non-cardiovascular sports.

If you could spend $5K to put a bathroom down there, it would definitely help jack up the price come time to sell. Just sayin'. Even if it's just a half bath.

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 09:56 PM
Yeah, I have strange priorities. I don't even care if my house has a garage. WTF am I gonna do with a garage. As long as I don't live on a busy street. I'm thinking my car will be alright.

This this is going to be your first house, you should be thinking primarily about resale because this definitely won't be your last home purchase.

Get in the investment mindset. Location. Lot. Stuff like this that will be important, not necessarily to you, but the next guy.

The problem with sinking money into basements is that, unless it's a walkout, it doesn't count toward your overall square footage. In other words, it might make the place more desirable, but you might not necessarily make any money off the investment (or even get all the money you put in back).

KcMizzou
03-24-2009, 09:56 PM
You get a house, you're gonna need storage.Yeah. For all the shit you think you might use someday, but never do...

I've got tons of it.

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 09:56 PM
If you could spend $5K to put a bathroom down there, it would definitely help jack up the price come time to sell. Just sayin'. Even i it's just a half bath.

Not necessarily.

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-24-2009, 09:56 PM
I already have enough refrigerators. I don't need a bathroom in the basement, mainly because that will skyrocket the price of how much it would cost. In a perfect world, it would be nice. But I'm not planning on making it rain. Just want a nice area where I can put a wet bar. Pool table, big screen, and ping pong table. Not for beer pong, but for Ping Pong. Best sport in the world. I love non-cardiovascular sports.
The most expensive part of putting in a bathroom is the plumbing, and your wet bar would probably require more of it than a bathroom would.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 09:59 PM
The most expensive part of putting in a bathroom is the plumbing, and your wet bar would probably require more of it than a bathroom would.

Ah well, I'll just get a cheap free standing bar then. It'll work. Just put a mini-fridge in it. As far as investment property, yeah, I'm trying to find a house that in a good market is going to go 20K more than it does right now in five years. But then again, most people don't think the market is going to recovery fully in 5 years I don't think

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 10:03 PM
Don't care about a garage, the condition of the wiring....but as long as its got a bar in the basement.


Yeah....you're ready.

RJ
03-24-2009, 10:05 PM
Well, let's take it a piece at a time.

An area 24x 24 would cost about $1200 - $1800 to carpet.

Next....

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 10:07 PM
Why a garage? Oh.....I don't know, how about something most home owners refer to as "resale value".

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-24-2009, 10:09 PM
Garages are nice to have in the winter time too.

luv
03-24-2009, 10:10 PM
Why a garage? Oh.....I don't know, how about something most home owners refer to as "resale value".

And you maximize your profits if you put a little cash and elbow grease into doing some imporvements/upgrades.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 10:10 PM
Why a garage? Oh.....I don't know, how about something most home owners refer to as "resale value".

I personally don't care about having a garage. But I'm going to buy a house with a garage, unless it's just an unbelievable deal. Just because of resale value. I really could care less if I parked my car in a garage, but I'm not a car guy. Can just get a shed for 400 bucks, put all your lawn and garden stuff in it.

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 10:12 PM
Sounds like you've already got all of the answers. /thread

DaneMcCloud
03-24-2009, 10:14 PM
I personally don't care about having a garage.

I didn't realize that you lived in SoCal where we only get about 24 days of rain all year.

No snow, no ice, no hail, no thunderstorms, no lightening, no rust, no tornadoes and no one EVER breaks into cars on the driveway.

Welcome!

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 10:15 PM
A garage can also double as a man-cave.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 10:17 PM
I didn't realize that you lived in SoCal where we only get about 24 days of rain all year.

No snow, no ice, no hail, no thunderstorms, no lightening, no rust, no tornadoes and no one EVER breaks into cars on the driveway.

Welcome!

I've parked my car outside since I was 16 years old, haven't had any problems. Comp ded of $120 pretty much puts me at ease with anything that could happen outside. The places I'm planning on living will be in suburban areas on quiet streets, so not real worried about it. Plus I don't keep anything valuable in my car anyway.

I should of known Iowaclown and McCloud would be in here making fun of me just for personal preferences. ROFL

DaneMcCloud
03-24-2009, 10:21 PM
A garage can also double as a man-cave.

Mine's detached from my house.

And full of everything that doesn't fit in the house, including all of our Costco items and "stock surplus" so that I don't have to go to Costo every week.

For what it's worth, to put in the shelving in my garage, I broke two hammer drills while drilling more than 300 holes for shelving.

And you fucking guys think I'm Lord of the Manor.

:p

DaneMcCloud
03-24-2009, 10:22 PM
I've parked my car outside since I was 16 years old, haven't had any problems. Comp ded of $120 pretty much puts me at ease with anything that could happen outside. The places I'm planning on living will be in suburban areas on quiet streets, so not real worried about it. Plus I don't keep anything valuable in my car anyway.

I should of known Iowaclown and McCloud would be in here making fun of me just for personal preferences. ROFL

No, Dude, congratulations!

I just wanted to make sure (DaneMcCloud-style) that you were taking everything into account when eschewing a garage.

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 10:24 PM
I'm not making fun of you. I think buying a home instead of renting, assuming you can afford it is a responsible financial decision. I think thats great.


My potential to mock comes from the "I don't like this tone of beige in the den, I prefer oyster...this house will just not do" tone I'm reading from your post.

I encourage you to look at more important things like structurally sound home, good roof, square walls, solid foundation, quality of neighborhood, school district, taxes, wiring , plumbing, overall condition....things that need fixed/updated/remodeled and have some idea of cost(add 40% to whatever number you come up with to get the truth). If the basement is sound and dry....spend time and money as you get extra to improve the basement for both use and resale.....or don't since you know all.

My first house was a turd without a garage, and I never thought I needed one. I bought a shed, remodeled the house and got by until I sold it for a profit and upgraded after 3 years of working on it. The 2nd house was bigger, nicer and had a 1 1/2 car detatched garage.....It was awesome to have a place to park a car to save ice scraping....change oil....stain wood, cut boards on a rainy day for inside projects(like finishing a basement room)....keeping a lawn mower, tools, extra storage etc.

My current home has a 2 car garage....and I wish it were 3, or supplimented by an additional shop. I got by alot of years without a garage, but once I had one, I'll never go without.


Take it as informed opinion, or don't.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 10:25 PM
No, Dude, congratulations!

I just wanted to make sure (DaneMcCloud-style) that you were taking everything into account when eschewing a garage.

Very good. I had to look that word up. I'll have to add it to my limited vocab arsenal. I pretty much only use the words the, a, at, you, your mom, and f*ck. For everybody that didn't know

Eschew - verb avoid, give up, abandon, have nothing to do with, shun, elude, renounce, refrain from, forgo, abstain from, fight shy of, forswear, abjure, kick (informal) swear off, give a wide berth to, keep or steer clear of

I like it.

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 10:27 PM
Very good. I had to look that word up. I'll have to add it to my limited vocab arsenal. For everybody that didn't know

Eschew - verb avoid, give up, abandon, have nothing to do with, shun, elude, renounce, refrain from, forgo, abstain from, fight shy of, forswear, abjure, kick (informal) swear off, give a wide berth to, keep or steer clear of

I like it.

Actually, Dane just misspelled "cashew," but no worries.

KcKing
03-24-2009, 10:27 PM
Not sure on the exact cost, or even a ball-park cost... But I do know it's a hell of a lot cheaper to do it yourself...

http://www.diynetwork.com/diy/hi_basement/0,2036,DIY_13902,00.html

Iowanian
03-24-2009, 10:28 PM
I just had a vision of Rocky Balboa and Adrian looking at the first home.....thats how I vision willi.

"yo adrian, this is some nice wood."

"the home is about 10 years old and there is a minor problem with the foundation" [/realtor]


Look at this here, I'll put my bean bag chair in this corner

BWillie
03-24-2009, 10:28 PM
Not sure on the exact cost, or even a ball-park cost... But I do know it's a hell of a lot cheaper to do it yourself...

http://www.diynetwork.com/diy/hi_basement/0,2036,DIY_13902,00.html

thanks, lot of info in there.

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 10:29 PM
Mine's detached from my house.

And full of everything that doesn't fit in the house, including all of our Costco items and "stock surplus" so that I don't have to go to Costo every week.

For what it's worth, to put in the shelving in my garage, I broke two hammer drills while drilling more than 300 holes for shelving.

And you ****ing guys think I'm Lord of the Manor.

:p

Garages are must-have items.

I have my weight bench, tools, etc. At one point I had my beer fridge out there. Great catch-alls.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 10:30 PM
I just had a vision of Rocky Balboa and Adrian looking at the first home.....thats how I vision willi.

"yo adrian, this is some nice wood."

"the home is about 10 years old and there is a minor problem with the foundation" [/realtor]


Look at this here, I'll put my bean bag chair in this corner

ha, nah. I actually didn't buy two houses because they had put piers? up in the corners and they had mold covered up by carpet in the basement. I'm not smart enough to know if those issues were taken care of, and even if they were. I wouldn't think people aren't going to want to buy when I would go to sell it knowing those issues once existed.

DeezNutz
03-24-2009, 10:31 PM
Get hooked up with a good realtor, man. Preferably a hot one.

She'll show you the ropes.

BWillie
03-24-2009, 10:33 PM
Get hooked up with a good realtor, man. Preferably a hot one.

She'll show you the ropes.

Think I gotta good one. Cept he's an old dude. Seems like he knows a thing or two. I dropped the ball on that one though. Alot of houses I've seen, when we are waiting for the house to get done being shown, a hot ass 30 something blonde realtor comes out. :banghead::banghead::banghead::banghead:

Phobia
03-24-2009, 10:41 PM
I've charged anywhere from $30 per square foot on up to $60. It depends on what you want and what is already there. It depends on existing plumbing, electrical, and mechanicals. There are a number of variables.

But if you just want sheetrock, walls, insulation, electicity, and some vents then you're on the low end of that price range.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-25-2009, 07:20 AM
I know it depends alot of square feet and other factors, but what is a general rule of thumb? I'm looking at houses right now and basically, I will not buy a house without a finished basement. I've noticed that alot of houses are significantly cheaper that I like, but the only thing that gets me away from them is not having a finished basement. I'm kinda in a time crunch, because my FHA 4.7% interest rate only lasts for so long. Hell of a time to buy a house right now.

I don't want to put a room down there or anything. Don't really need a bathroom either. Just a wet bar, some good chiefs memorabilia, and make it a nice rec room. BTW, I am not handy at all. Unless it's something I can learn in a weekend, I ain't doin' it. Any good reputable companies around here that specialize in that kind of thing?


I come from this a little differently than most. I have four years of construction experience. I have 12 years of real estate experience and I hav bought and sold over a dozen houses in recent years.

Someone mentioned that you would certainly pay less for buying a home and then finishing the basement. This is wrong at least 80% of the time. A home with a finished basement won't sell for that much more than one without. (In comparison to what it will cost you to finish the basement to a similar finish quality)

A lot of different things go into the cost. First, if it is a newer home, it probably has higher basement ceilings, as well as a bath plumbed in the basement already.

The higher the ceilings, the cheaper it is to finish because the contractors don't have to be as 'creative' when it comes to mechanical systems.

Now, mechanical systems: The current HVAC is rated for the finished area. If it is a two story house with two systems and they are zoned already, you can probably get away with tapping into your first floor system.

When you finish the basement, you will want heat and A/C. If not for temperature comfort, just for the air quality. The A/C will act as a dehumidifier, and the system will filter the air. You can look at about 2K for the HVAC considerations. This may be low. You may elect to have things set up radically different from what you currently have after the HVAC guy comes out.... or it may be a little high, if you can tap into an existing system without overworking it. (If the previous owner put in a new system that was much larger than he needed)

Okay, so then the wet bar. If the basement is plumbed for a bath, most of the time, the wet bar can be placed in such a way as to take advantage of the existing roughed out plumbing (basically, just on the other side of the bathroom sink wall). If not, you are looking at breaking the concrete floor to install the drain and the draing pipe. Just this, will run you about $1500.00 depending on how much concrete they have to break up.

Okay, a bath will run you about $3000.00 after the roughed in plumbing. This is a plane jane, no frills bathroom. Standard tub, toilet, cheap sink, cheap fixtures, etc.

Now, to just finish a room in the basement, you are probably looking at about $15.00 per square foot. This is with a dropped ceiling, base carpet, cheap lighting, 3.5" baseboards, etc.

You can usually find basements that are already finished and it will cost you less than if you buy the same house and finish it yourself.

But, right now, frankly, it is all about the 'deal'. It is a great time to buy. You can find ridiculous deals. And, you may find one with a finished basement or without. If it has one, great. If not, don't shy away just because of that.

Obviously, size matters when estimating this. But, if you are hiring a contractor, and are looking to finish 1000sf, with a wetbar and a bathroom, you are looking at around 20K pretty easy, probably more.

Remember, once you start a project, it is real easy to think "I should go ahead and do this... it only costs a little extra'... and you do that a few times and suddenly, that 20K basement is a 40K basement.

One positive, right now, contractors are struggling with finding work. IF you have the cash, you can probably get this done a little cheaper by haggling and getting a lot of quotes. But, the key will be having the cash to offer them a job 'right now'... not getting bids for something to have done in the future.

Oh, and it will cost you more to hire a general contractor that will handle everything. It would cost less to hire each subcontractor yourself.



Anyways, good luck with it all.

Brock
03-25-2009, 07:23 AM
It looks like drywall slabs have come down in price recently. I remember a couple of years ago I was paying like 16 dollars a sheet and it looks like they're down to about 8 now. Probably a good time to get started.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-25-2009, 07:25 AM
Garages are must-have items.

I have my weight bench, tools, etc. At one point I had my beer fridge out there. Great catch-alls.

I am in Real Estate, and as you can imagine, things are .... um... slow right now. I had a 3600sf house on the Golf Course in one of the premier subdivisions down here, but we had to move. It was nice, it had a Master Bathroom that was as big as the Master Bedroom in our current house. (not exagerating) It had dual staircases. Every room had a private bathroom. Hardwood floors, extensive trimwork.... just a gorgeous house.

The thing I miss most? My three car, two story garage. The garage was 24 feet tall, 22 feet deep and 38 feet long. I had room for all my cars, all my tools, all the kids outdoor toys, and when I was doing well, I fantasized about putting in a lift and getting an old car to restore.

It is just funny how, of all the nice things that I liked about that house, the garage is the one thing that I really wish we had here.

tooge
03-25-2009, 07:27 AM
Mine's detached from my house.

And full of everything that doesn't fit in the house, including all of our Costco items and "stock surplus" so that I don't have to go to Costo every week.

For what it's worth, to put in the shelving in my garage, I broke two hammer drills while drilling more than 300 holes for shelving.

And you ****ing guys think I'm Lord of the Manor.

:p

Detatched? Detatched? What rich guy has a detatched garage? You must have someone that holds an umbrella for you to walk to it when it is raining no?

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-25-2009, 07:33 AM
Detatched? Detatched? What rich guy has a detatched garage? You must have someone that holds an umbrella for you to walk to it when it is raining no?
LOL, he's in SoCal. When it rains there everyone runs to their basements and hides.

DeezNutz
03-25-2009, 07:59 AM
I am in Real Estate, and as you can imagine, things are .... um... slow right now. I had a 3600sf house on the Golf Course in one of the premier subdivisions down here, but we had to move. It was nice, it had a Master Bathroom that was as big as the Master Bedroom in our current house. (not exagerating) It had dual staircases. Every room had a private bathroom. Hardwood floors, extensive trimwork.... just a gorgeous house.

The thing I miss most? My three car, two story garage. The garage was 24 feet tall, 22 feet deep and 38 feet long. I had room for all my cars, all my tools, all the kids outdoor toys, and when I was doing well, I fantasized about putting in a lift and getting an old car to restore.

It is just funny how, of all the nice things that I liked about that house, the garage is the one thing that I really wish we had here.

Sounds like you clearly had yourself one hell of a house, with a garage fit for a man's man. :thumb:

luv
03-25-2009, 08:07 AM
I come from this a little differently than most. I have four years of construction experience. I have 12 years of real estate experience and I hav bought and sold over a dozen houses in recent years.

Someone mentioned that you would certainly pay less for buying a home and then finishing the basement. This is wrong at least 80% of the time. A home with a finished basement won't sell for that much more than one without. (In comparison to what it will cost you to finish the basement to a similar finish quality)

A lot of different things go into the cost. First, if it is a newer home, it probably has higher basement ceilings, as well as a bath plumbed in the basement already.

The higher the ceilings, the cheaper it is to finish because the contractors don't have to be as 'creative' when it comes to mechanical systems.

Now, mechanical systems: The current HVAC is rated for the finished area. If it is a two story house with two systems and they are zoned already, you can probably get away with tapping into your first floor system.

When you finish the basement, you will want heat and A/C. If not for temperature comfort, just for the air quality. The A/C will act as a dehumidifier, and the system will filter the air. You can look at about 2K for the HVAC considerations. This may be low. You may elect to have things set up radically different from what you currently have after the HVAC guy comes out.... or it may be a little high, if you can tap into an existing system without overworking it. (If the previous owner put in a new system that was much larger than he needed)

Okay, so then the wet bar. If the basement is plumbed for a bath, most of the time, the wet bar can be placed in such a way as to take advantage of the existing roughed out plumbing (basically, just on the other side of the bathroom sink wall). If not, you are looking at breaking the concrete floor to install the drain and the draing pipe. Just this, will run you about $1500.00 depending on how much concrete they have to break up.

Okay, a bath will run you about $3000.00 after the roughed in plumbing. This is a plane jane, no frills bathroom. Standard tub, toilet, cheap sink, cheap fixtures, etc.

Now, to just finish a room in the basement, you are probably looking at about $15.00 per square foot. This is with a dropped ceiling, base carpet, cheap lighting, 3.5" baseboards, etc.

You can usually find basements that are already finished and it will cost you less than if you buy the same house and finish it yourself.

But, right now, frankly, it is all about the 'deal'. It is a great time to buy. You can find ridiculous deals. And, you may find one with a finished basement or without. If it has one, great. If not, don't shy away just because of that.

Obviously, size matters when estimating this. But, if you are hiring a contractor, and are looking to finish 1000sf, with a wetbar and a bathroom, you are looking at around 20K pretty easy, probably more.

Remember, once you start a project, it is real easy to think "I should go ahead and do this... it only costs a little extra'... and you do that a few times and suddenly, that 20K basement is a 40K basement.

One positive, right now, contractors are struggling with finding work. IF you have the cash, you can probably get this done a little cheaper by haggling and getting a lot of quotes. But, the key will be having the cash to offer them a job 'right now'... not getting bids for something to have done in the future.

Oh, and it will cost you more to hire a general contractor that will handle everything. It would cost less to hire each subcontractor yourself.



Anyways, good luck with it all.

So, why do I always hear that so much spent in upgrades brings back so much more at resale? Well, with the exception of bathrooms. I think the highest return I've seen on bathrooms is like 80-90%. Would a finished basement not be an upgrade? Especially if he tries to put minimal cost into it? And how much of a return do you think he'd see on putting a $3000 bathroom in the basement?

DaFace
03-25-2009, 08:14 AM
Not that an appraisals are 100% accurate, but the finished basement for the house we're buying only added $5,800 to the appraised value of our place at 765'. Just FYI. That doesn't include a bathroom, though.

Katipan
03-25-2009, 08:15 AM
LOL, he's in SoCal. When it rains there everyone runs to their basements and hides.

There aren't any basements in SoCal.

DeezNutz
03-25-2009, 08:16 AM
So, why do I always hear that so much spent in upgrades brings back so much more at resale? Well, with the exception of bathrooms. I think the highest return I've seen on bathrooms is like 80-90%. Would a finished basement not be an upgrade? Especially if he tries to put minimal cost into it? And how much of a return do you think he'd see on putting a $3000 bathroom in the basement?

Because basements, if they're not walkouts, aren't figured into the overall square footage of the home.

Some upgrades net great returns, bathrooms and kitchens in particular. Some upgrades, like putting a pool in the backyard and finishing a pit basement, are buyer beware.

Finishing the basement might make the house more appealing, but he might not get all of his money back from his investment, let alone make money on the deal.

Demonpenz
03-25-2009, 08:41 AM
LOL, he's in SoCal. When it rains there everyone runs to their basements and hides.

I had two friends that moved to socal after college and that is exactly what they did lol I nicknamed it "the bunker" Rofl

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-25-2009, 08:47 AM
So, why do I always hear that so much spent in upgrades brings back so much more at resale? Well, with the exception of bathrooms. I think the highest return I've seen on bathrooms is like 80-90%. Would a finished basement not be an upgrade? Especially if he tries to put minimal cost into it? And how much of a return do you think he'd see on putting a $3000 bathroom in the basement?
It will add some value, it just won't be a dollar-for-dollar return. Bathrooms and kitchens are about the only thing that can net you a positive gain.

In my personal opinion, if you're buying a house strictly on the hopes that it will gain value, you're buying it for the wrong reason. You'll never see that gain anyway because as housing prices go up you'll just spend what you gained on the next one. About the only way one can get ahead is if they can do the work themselves and he said that's not really an option.

Stewie
03-25-2009, 09:33 AM
I bought my house in '93. The first thing I did was gut the finished basement due to its 1968 decor (when the house was built). The finished space is about 900 sq. ft and while I left the walls in place and painted them, the rest was torn out and replaced. I added a wet bar, upgraded the electrical including additional recessed lighting, vinyl flooring and carpet. I did everything but the flooring myself and spent about $3000 total (in 1994 dollars). The wet bar is built of stock cabinets and countertops that I bought from Builder's Square, so it was pretty inexpensive but turned out nice.

DaKCMan AP
03-25-2009, 09:50 AM
What's a basement? ;)

Groves
03-25-2009, 09:56 AM
So, why do I always hear that so much spent in upgrades brings back so much more at resale?

Well, realtors, though many are nice, don't really care either way from a financial standpoint.

You can't fault contractors for hoping that upgrades to bring back more at resale because it makes their clients feel better about spending the money.

There's few people collecting the data, and the people that could really benefit the data are the ones contemplating buying a house, not people that already own.

If you've already bought the house, it's not very palatable to hear.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-26-2009, 06:48 AM
Sounds like you clearly had yourself one hell of a house, with a garage fit for a man's man. :thumb:

It was nice for the 3 years I lived there. Now, I am renting it out. I picked up a foreclosure in the same school district that is not nearly as nice, but the payment is 1/3 of what I used to pay. The only bad part is that I still have to cover $800.00 a month just to keep the old place, and I can't sell it without taking it in the shorts.

Hopefully, this damned economy will turn around and I can sell some houses. Then, I want to buy some land and build a 2500sf ranch with a finished basement and a four car garage, with a lift and a pit.

Okay, probably NEVER going to happen.... but I gotta dream.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-26-2009, 06:53 AM
So, why do I always hear that so much spent in upgrades brings back so much more at resale? Well, with the exception of bathrooms. I think the highest return I've seen on bathrooms is like 80-90%. Would a finished basement not be an upgrade? Especially if he tries to put minimal cost into it? And how much of a return do you think he'd see on putting a $3000 bathroom in the basement?

I always tell my clients and homeowners that I work with that you do upgrades for yourself, not to get a return on your investment.

The one caveat is that if something needs replacing, the cost to upgrade versus replacing with the same quality is typically much less. At those times, it 'may' be beneficial to spend the extra money to upgrade.

Unless you buy a house below market that needs rehabbed, or unless you are in a high demand area with older homes, you will not see a dollar for dollar return on your investment when you upgrade a home or finish the basement.

In the past, just normal appreciation would allow you to recoup your investment. However, I believe appreciation will happen at a much lower rate going forward than it happened in the late nineties through 2005.

luv
03-26-2009, 06:56 AM
I always tell my clients and homeowners that I work with that you do upgrades for yourself, not to get a return on your investment.

The one caveat is that if something needs replacing, the cost to upgrade versus replacing with the same quality is typically much less. At those times, it 'may' be beneficial to spend the extra money to upgrade.

Unless you buy a house below market that needs rehabbed, or unless you are in a high demand area with older homes, you will not see a dollar for dollar return on your investment when you upgrade a home or finish the basement.

In the past, just normal appreciation would allow you to recoup your investment. However, I believe appreciation will happen at a much lower rate going forward than it happened in the late nineties through 2005.

You need to call HGTV. They're hiring the wrong real estate experts. They tell how much they spent fixing up a room, and the realtor usually tells them what they can expect to get back for it. It's usually always higher unless they've overspent on kitchens, bathrooms, or lighting.

Or they urge people to buy houses with unfinished basements telling them they can get they're money back, plus some.

Even last night, when a couple renovated a basement apartment, some appraiser said it added $100K onto the worth of the house.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-26-2009, 06:58 AM
Not that an appraisals are 100% accurate, but the finished basement for the house we're buying only added $5,800 to the appraised value of our place at 765'. Just FYI. That doesn't include a bathroom, though.

From an appraisal standpoint, it completely depends on the area. In some subdivisions, a finished basement is almost standard. In those subdivisions, not having one really hurts the resale of the home.

The appraiser is supposed to look at the market and derrive the average price benefit per sf of finished basement.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-26-2009, 07:01 AM
You need to call HGTV. They're hiring the wrong real estate experts. They tell how much they spent fixing up a room, and the realtor usually tells them what they can expect to get back for it. It's usually always higher unless they've overspent on kitchens, bathrooms, or lighting.

Everything is situation specific. But, on the whole, other than paint and carpet.... a home buyers net return on investment for real estate upgrades is typically negative.

SenselessChiefsFan
03-26-2009, 07:02 AM
You need to call HGTV. They're hiring the wrong real estate experts. They tell how much they spent fixing up a room, and the realtor usually tells them what they can expect to get back for it. It's usually always higher unless they've overspent on kitchens, bathrooms, or lighting.

Or they urge people to buy houses with unfinished basements telling them they can get they're money back, plus some.

Even last night, when a couple renovated a basement apartment, some appraiser said it added $100K onto the worth of the house.

Where was the house with the basement apartment at?

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-26-2009, 07:05 AM
You need to call HGTV. They're hiring the wrong real estate experts. They tell how much they spent fixing up a room, and the realtor usually tells them what they can expect to get back for it. It's usually always higher unless they've overspent on kitchens, bathrooms, or lighting.

Or they urge people to buy houses with unfinished basements telling them they can get they're money back, plus some.

Even last night, when a couple renovated a basement apartment, some appraiser said it added $100K onto the worth of the house.
Do you really believe everything you see on TV?

luv
03-26-2009, 07:06 AM
Do you really believe everything you see on TV?

It's flippin' HGTV. They have a hidden agenda?

Bacon Cheeseburger
03-26-2009, 07:07 AM
It's flippin' HGTV. They have a hidden agenda?
Yes. To keep you watching.

luv
03-26-2009, 07:08 AM
Where was the house with the basement apartment at?

I don't recall. Someplace where a renovated 1 BR basement apartment would go for $1000 per month.

Otherwise, they do shows all over the country. House Hunters, Design To Sell, My House Is Worth What?, etc.

luv
03-26-2009, 07:12 AM
Yes. To keep you watching.

There was one time I was watching Property Virgins, and she was showing a couple a kitchen in a house. She said it needed to be updated, and started listing cabinets, counters, floor, etc, and then said they could do it for $500 tops. I just went to Lowe's with my dad last weekend to price wood laminent flooring, different types of counters, etc. No way could he do what she was saying for $500, and we live in a low COL area.

Phobia
03-26-2009, 07:36 AM
It's flippin' HGTV. They have a hidden agenda?


No but most of their shows are on the coasts. What they show is not realistic in the midwest - typically.

DaFace
03-26-2009, 08:23 AM
You need to call HGTV. They're hiring the wrong real estate experts. They tell how much they spent fixing up a room, and the realtor usually tells them what they can expect to get back for it. It's usually always higher unless they've overspent on kitchens, bathrooms, or lighting.

Or they urge people to buy houses with unfinished basements telling them they can get they're money back, plus some.

Even last night, when a couple renovated a basement apartment, some appraiser said it added $100K onto the worth of the house.

My wife is into those shows, and I got into them a bit when we first started house hunting. But there was an episode of "Property Virgins" that completely burst my bubble in terms of considering them to be experts. A couple was trying to buy their first home, and they were looking at houses that were at the VERY top of their price range. They were approved by the bank for that amount, but they had wanted to spend maybe 15% less than that based on their own personal calculations about what they could afford. Her reply (paraphrased) was:

"Sometimes you have to stretch a little higher than you expect to get the house you want. The bank knows what you can afford. It's their job to make sure you can afford your payments."

I just about crawled through the screen and strangled that woman. I had to rewind it and play it back twice to make sure I had heard her correctly. :shake:

luv
03-26-2009, 08:29 AM
My wife is into those shows, and I got into them a bit when we first started house hunting. But there was an episode of "Property Virgins" that completely burst my bubble in terms of considering them to be experts. A couple was trying to buy their first home, and they were looking at houses that were at the VERY top of their price range. They were approved by the bank for that amount, but they had wanted to spend maybe 15% less than that based on their own personal calculations about what they could afford. Her reply (paraphrased) was:

"Sometimes you have to stretch a little higher than you expect to get the house you want. The bank knows what you can afford. It's their job to make sure you can afford your payments."

I just about crawled through the screen and strangled that woman. I had to rewind it and play it back twice to make sure I had heard her correctly. :shake:
Yeah, I used to like that show, but her "advice" and figures she would flippantly throw out were just hard to swallow.

There's another show called First Time Buyers, I believe. I like that show a lot better.