The game of house pricing can often seem like staring into an abyss, throwing something in, and just seeing what happens. Some renovation projects, for example, can actually lower your home’s value, others may only help you break even, while seemingly innocuous improvements can net very large gains. Thankfully, when it comes to amenities, there are some tried, tested, and true things that will increase your home’s value. here are the amenities that matter, whether they’ve been proven to raise or lower your home’s value, and how to use them to your advantage when selling or buying.
Con: Train Tracks
Nearby train tracks lower your homes value and it’s not difficult to see why: the constant noise is hardly a selling feature. We have consistent evidence that proves being close to train tracks, whether it’s a rail yard or the LRT, will decrease the price of smaller homes and condos by around five to seven percent, according to one study, but larger homes are different. A large home may actually break even in terms of its proximity to train tracks, although the risk is rarely worth it.
Being close to water is a good thing in almost every city in the world. There are a few notable exceptions, but Edmonton is not one of them. If you’re near the river valley, a major water feature, or a lake (manmade or otherwise), your home is going to have a higher value. The specific amount varies, but it’s almost always a positive to be nearer to water. This includes a close proximity, but obviously waterfront properties benefit the most from being near water.
Contrary to many commonly-held notions, your neighbourhood isn’t a large factor in determining home value. When we talk about neighbourhood in this sense, we aren’t talking about its location or proximity to services, we’re talking about the name of the neighbourhood and the homes surrounding yours. In general, these won’t affect your housing price unless your neighbours are particularly terrifying. Of course, it can still matter for attracting buyers, so pay close attention to the feel of a neighbourhood. It may not affect price, but it could affect who comes to look.
While Edmonton is very much a city that encourages vehicle ownership, walkability is becoming an increasingly important aspect of home buying. As people start moving into condos, the ability to get everything you need within a short walk helps drive up your home’s price. This includes access to schools in the area, grocery stores, and just the presence of well-maintained walkways and sidewalks.
There are plenty of amenities but not all of them actually impact your home’s price. If amenities matter to you, be sure to find those first when buying a home, but don’t forget that other amenities may matter to the person who inevitably buys your home later on. Think about access and what’s nearby. Doing so can help you get a home that appreciates in value even more.