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Ask A Realtor: Adding A 4th Bedroom To An Already-Finished Basement

A reader writes:

We have a 1900+ sq.ft. house in Briargate. Its 3 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, ranch-style with a finished basement which is just a large family room. We now need to add a 4th bedroom in order to stay in our home. Naturally, we want to put it in the basement. Will this negatively impact the value of our home?

Also, we will have to move or remove our gas fireplace in order to accommodate this new room. For resale, would it be worth our while to go through the hassle of relocating the fireplace?

The short answer is that adding a 4th bedroom is usually a benefit when selling, but let me add a few caveats:

First, I’m assuming you have at least a 3/4 bathroom (sink/toilet/shower) in the basement already.  If not, you need one.  It doesn’t qualify as a bedroom if there isn’t a bathroom on the same level.

Second, a gas fireplace in the basement is nice, but typically won’t make or break a deal, so I wouldn’t worry too much about that.

Third, it is very important that the bedroom be done to blend in with the basement as a whole.  Properly done, no one should be able to tell that you added the bedroom after the rest of the basement was finished.  That means, try to match the trim, have the walls textured to match (if applicable), etc.  You also need to make sure any necessary permits are pulled because that comes back to bite people all the time when selling.

Fourth, don’t create an awkward layout.  The fact that you’ll have to move the fireplace makes me wonder about the space you’re working with.  If you make the basement awkward (albeit functional) it will hurt you when it’s time to sell.

So I guess in summary, adding a bedroom is a great idea as long as it’s done properly.  Done wrong, what could have been an asset turns into a liability.  I hope that helps!

- Jeremy

Jeremy Isaac is a local Realtor, but you probably know him better as Carrie’s husband.  Do you have a real estate question you’d like answered? Email Jeremy directly at jeremy@thecircagroup.com.

You can search the Colorado Springs MLS on Jeremy’s website, with no registration required to view homes, prices, addresses, or any other information. If you’re looking to sell your home, be sure to view his marketing portfolio and see how the use of HDR photography, professional video, and more will help your home sell for top dollar!

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Comments

  1. Thanks for the info on the basement bedroom. Our 4th bedroom in in the basement and I thought they counted it as a bedroom even though there isn’t a bathroom down there. With the economy and my adult kids returning home we may turn our computer room into a bedroom. We have the plumbing for a bathroom downstairs, I will consider actually finishing it as a bathroom if I end up turning our basement computer room into a bedroom.

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