Home Selling in Warrenton>Question Details

Linda Braun, Home Seller in Warrenton, VA

Should i install a bathroom in my finished basement before listing my home for sale in rural northern VA?

Asked by Linda Braun, Warrenton, VA Fri Sep 28, 2007

I know the market is way down in close-in suburbs of northern VA, but I live outside Warrenton, 45 miles west of DC. I would have to borrow the money to install a bathroom in my finished basement.

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It depends on how much work you would have to do. If the plumbing is already close and accessible, it would be worth it...but keep it very simple..just a half bath...this could make a difference for city folk wanting to move out of the busy city.

Borrowing money would be risky at this stage of the game.

If the hole for the toilet is already there, you could install that part yourself...or to reduce your costs, you buy the materials, and just pay to install.
Web Reference: http://iansellsnola.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 28, 2007
The answer will depend on several things as far as the number of bedrooms and baths you have now and the exact neighborhood you are in. Most likely the answer will still be no do not put in the bathroom because you will not make it back when you sell. Right now price is king when it comes to selling in Fauquier County. I just sold a home on the DC side of Warrenton with a similar question but they where going to finish the basement. Instead we just lowered the price and we got it sold. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Oct 1, 2007
Hi Linda,

Adding a bathroom to the basement does add to your home's value. That being said, there are certainly other factors to consider. First, it is important that you are careful not to "over-improve". I would estimate that a fully finished basement could add $4k - $6k in value to your home, so...you want to make sure you don't spend more than that when you add it.

Another factor to consider is the current layout of your basement. Do you have a full bedroom down there? Is is used as a recreation room by the kids? Uses such as these would increase the benefits of having a full bathroom on the same level. For example, the benefits of having a bedroom in the basement may be reduced if the occupant of that bedroom has to walk up a flight of stairs every morning to take a shower.... Thus, adding a full bath would add value to your home on its own...while legitimizing an existing layout that may have otherwise been viewed as awkward.

Hope this helps!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 13, 2014
Hi Linda

Yes adding a bath or half a bath adds value to finished basement.

But it comes down to effort, cost and your bandwidth.

Good luck.
Web Reference: http://www.ruthandperry.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 15, 2013
Hi Linda

Yes adding a bath or half a bath adds value to finished basement.

But it comes down to effort, cost and your bandwidth.

Good luck.
Web Reference: http://www.ruthandperry.con
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 15, 2013
If your finished basement is already "roughed in" for a bathroom then I would recommend it. It will add value to your home.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jun 15, 2013
Hello Linda, I believe the answer is yes. One of my clients recently asked me the same question, and I responded - "A full bathroom in a basement adds 3-5k of value to your home, beyond the financial benefits, the home would be MUCH more marketable with a bathroom in a FINISHED BASEMENT. If it were unfinished, I wouldn't recommend installing an extra bath, however finished, I would."
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 11, 2013
Hi Linda:

How are you doing?

No, I would not "borrow" money to put in an extra bathroom, just price it accordingly.

Warrenton is a great place to live. I have sold homes there, and many "city slicker's" would buy your home "as is", as long as they felt the price was right.

There are very few "active" listings in Northern Virginia now, and if the buyer of your house can qualify for the "new and improved" home buyers tax credit, you have to have a "ratified" contract by April 30, which is only 5 months away.

Just to review:

Anyone who is a First Time Home Buyer, or hasn't owned a "primary residence" in the last 3 years, and makes under $125,000 a year if single or $225,000 if married can qualify for up to an $8,000 tax credit.

And perhaps even more important in your case, any homebuyer who has owned and lived in their current "primary residence" in 5 consectutive, of the last 8 years, and meets the same income maximums, is qualified for a $6,500 tax credit is single, or $3,250 credit if married.

Also, (and I am thankfully almost finished), the FHA is considering tighening its lending requirements to make it tougher to qualify for an FHA loan.

What this all means to you is, if it were me, I would give the place a good cleaning, slap on some fresh paint, and get it on the market ASAP, as we don't know yet how all these new regulations are going to effect the market.

Sorrry for all the "hot air", and hope this helps,

Johnny "Culdesac" Yankoviak
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Dec 3, 2009
How many other bathrooms are in the home? Is the basement already plumbed for a bath? Do the other homes in the area have a basement bath? There are a lot of reasons to say YES but if you are getting ready to put your home on the market soon answering some of the other questions will let you know if you will be able to recoup the cost of the new bathroom. The Warrenton area is considered "rural" anymore!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 28, 2007
I don't know your market, so check with a local Realtor.
In principle, it depends on what other homes, similar to yours (comparables), are like.
If your home only has one bath, then definitely a second bath is essential.
If most homes that have basements have baths, then, if you could afford it, I would.

A Realtor should be able to provide you with a Comparative Market Analysis, help you determine the likely sales price of your home, and your approximately net profit.

Good luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 28, 2007
Keith Sorem, Real Estate Pro in Glendale, CA
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