Home and garden shows might lead you to believe the top priorities for home buyers are things like quartz countertops and herringbone floors. In reality, most buyers in Toronto and beyond aren’t all that fixated on things like décor. A recent survey confirms what we in the home comfort business already knew: the most important amenities for home buyers are things that provide practical, long-lasting benefits.
In 2018, the top five non-negotiable amenities for home buyers were:
- Heating and air conditioning
- Private outdoor space
- Guest bedroom
- Walk-in closets
- Home orientation (the direction the house faces)
Here’s what this data means for homeowners looking to make upgrades in the next few years.
1. Central Air Conditioning and Heating
We confess that furnaces and air conditioners aren’t as exciting as pools or countertops. However, the survey results are clear: 82% of home buyers consider these amenities mandatory.
In fact, buyers would spend an average of $4,951 more on a home with central heating and air than one without it.
With proper maintenance, furnaces and air conditioners can provide reliable service for over a decade. Potential buyers enjoy not having to worry about replacing a newly-installed HVAC system.
Quality heating and cooling equipment don’t come cheap, but homeowners in Ontario can benefit from rebates on heating and cooling equipment through Save on Energy. Our long-time supplier Lennox also offers lucrative rebates, including this fantastic furnace/AC bundle.
2. Private Patio or Backyard
Space comes at a premium in the GTA. Lot sizes are shrinking, and townhouses are increasingly sold with little to no private backyard space.
Regardless, home buyers aren’t ready to give up on the dream of a big backyard, and more than half of them still consider having their own outdoor space non-negotiable. The survey showed that a private patio or backyard could boost the value of a home by $5902.
Soon-to-be sellers can’t add additional outdoor space where none existed before, but they can take steps to make their backyard as presentable as possible.
3. Guest Bedroom
Guest bedrooms hold all kinds of potential. For some homeowners, it represents extra storage space; to others, it’s the opportunity to share the holidays with the people they care for most.
In any case, a guest bedroom is high on the list of amenities home buyers were looking for in 2018. Almost 42% saw it as a must-have feature.
A comfortable guest room can increase the value of a home in the eyes of these buyers by approximately $4527.
4. Walk-In Closets
Walk-in closets are no longer a luxury; they’re a given. Most newer houses include a walk-in master bedroom closet, and according to the survey, 32.2% of home buyers would walk away from homes without one.
Although walk-in closets are rare in older construction, it’s often possible to add one with a bit of remodelling. The same goes for heritage homes and central air conditioning.
5. Home Orientation
Pop quiz: what direction does your home face?
That question was certainly on the minds of home buyers in 2018.
A home’s orientation affects much more than its view; it also has an impact on energy efficiency. Seasonal sun and wind patterns can increase or decrease heating and cooling costs. Maybe that’s why 31.7% of home buyers paid close attention to the direction a house faces.
Appealing to Home Buyers
Some homeowners hold off on upgrading their furnace and air conditioner if they plan on selling. After all, what’s the point of paying for an upgrade you’ll only enjoy for a few years? But the results of this survey are a strong counterargument.
It’s clear that central heating and air conditioning are among the most important amenities to potential home buyers. Upgrading is more than an investment in your family’s comfort; it’s a big boost to the value of your home in the eyes of a buyer.
If you’re thinking of installing a new furnace or air conditioner in the GTA, the AtlasCare team is happy to help. Call us or send us a message any time.