As you’re researching different remodeling projects that add value to your home, you may want to consider the practicality of adding a bonus room and/or garage conversion. Aside from adding additional space and increasing your home’s value, these spaces will also allow your family to have a great time. Adding a bonus room that’s appealing to potential buyers in the future will also enable you to increase your asking price a great deal. Here are six different ideas that can help you decide exactly what type of space you want to add as you design your own addition.

1. Bar
A bar can be a wonderful place for adults to escape without having to leave home. A bonus-room bar can be as fancy or casual as you want. Some of the most common and popular bar themes include the following:

  • Wine cellar
  • Martini
  • Sports
  • Tap beer
  • Cigar

If these themes aren’t appealing, you can create your own. The possibilities of bar themes truly are endless. To get the most out of the bar theme you choose, put your creativity to the test and try to make your bonus-room bar as unique as possible.

How much is this room addition? The addition of a bar can run the gamut from a relatively inexpensive endeavor with a simple counter and wine cooler to a larger-scope custom project taking a number of months or more. It will depend on the size of the bar room and such variables as plumbing, electricity, custom cabinets, appliances, refrigerators, countertops, tilework, and more.

2. Home Office
A home office isn’t the most creative type of bonus room, but it’s extremely efficient because it allows you to use other rooms in your house to meet immediate needs and is a remodeling project that adds value. Many homeowners who have an office bonus room use the extra space in their home to create a play, movie, storage, or exercise room. Their home is functional and their family is happy. Additionally, many people who have a bonus-room office find that their secluded space helps them get away and concentrate well. In this regard, a bonus-room office ensures increased productivity.

How much is this room addition? The cost of a home office will depend on the amount square footage added, whether you need electrical updates or permits, and the cost of furniture, cabinetry, storage, lighting, and paint and décor.

3. Home Theater
Home-theater rooms are one of the most popular types of bonus rooms to add and should definitely be considered as you design your addition. A home-theater room can be created to resemble an actual movie theater or designed as an extra living-room-type space. You’ll need to design a room that’s at least 10 by 16 feet in order to fit two rows of theater-style seats. Most people who create a home theater make it as comfortable as possible. A popcorn maker, refrigerator, movie storage, pillows, soundproof walls, acoustic tiles, atmospheric lighting, and even a pool table are great additions. A surround-sound system and high-definition television are a must. The better the design and components of your home theater, the greater the chance that this remodeling project will add value to your home.

How much is this room addition? There’s a huge range in cost for home theaters and will depend on the size of your room along with the quality of the sound system, soundproofing, theater-style chairs, and other details you choose.

4. A guest bedroom
A guest bedroom is the ideal type of bonus room for homeowners who have a lot of visitors and is a remodeling project that adds value—not only for you but also for future buyers. The good thing about a guest bedroom is that it can be arranged and decorated the way you want. This helps your guests feel comfortable and at home. One or two beds can be put in the room. If it’s a room where young kids will be staying, a bunk bed can be a great addition. Other things you can put in the room include a small sofa, an armchair or a dresser. The room’s decorations and paintings can match those in your home or you can make the guest room its own unique space. The choice is completely up to you.

How much is this room addition? This is a lower-cost bonus-room addition since you won’t need a lot of extras to add to this room in addition to construction costs, furniture, paint, and decor.

5. An exercise room
Exercise bonus rooms are great for homeowners who are busy and/or have kids. An exercise bonus room allows you to get a quick workout in without having to waste time going to the gym. The room can be created based on the types of exercises you do. Any or all of the following can be put in the room as you design your addition:

  • A treadmill
  • A stationary bicycle
  • An elliptical machine
  • A rowing machine
  • Free weights
  • Machine weights
  • Medicine and exercise balls

The room can be as personalized as you want. A television or sound system is always a great added touch.

How much is this room addition? Your construction costs for an exercise room may actually be less than the cost of your exercise equipment, depending on the quality and number of machines that you choose.

Something Different – Garage Conversion
This unique creative option works if you don’t have an actual bonus room in your home. If you have a garage, it can make a great spot to convert into more storage or extra useful space in your home.

A lot of homeowners shy away from a garage conversion because they fear it might decrease the value of their home. However, this is a remodeling project that could add value in the long run—if done correctly.

Garages carry a lot of weight when it comes to the worth of a home. After all, most people would rather have shelter for their cars than more livable square footage. Some buyers won’t even look at a home if it lacks a decent garage. However, there are ways to convert this space without detracting from a buyer’s needs while maintaining your home’s value. Here’s how to increase your home’s value with a garage conversion as you design your own addition:

  • Build up
    If the design of your home allows, consider building an extra living space above the garage, like an apartment. Here you can have the best of both worlds: an intact parking garage and an opportunity for extra income. You can rent the room out or offer it as a comfortable place for your guests. Plus, when you go to sell, an extra bedroom will look extra enticing to buyers.
  • Take and replace
    If you transform your garage into more living space, make sure whatever you take away you put back somewhere else. For instance, if your garage provided a lot of storage before the conversion, put a shed or other container on the property to hold these items. Also, you need to consider if this project will take away parking spaces. Street parking can be a pain, so ensuring there’s enough parking is key to retaining the value of your home.
  • Don’t cut corners
    Garage conversions shouldn’t be DIY projects. They should be handled by experts, not by sub-par contractors, especially if plumbing and HVAC systems are needed. More often than not, these remodels are done by inexperienced homeowners or bargain professionals, leaving a poor excuse for a remodel. If you try to save a few bucks, you’ll pay in the long run. Furthermore, some homeowners don’t get the right permits for these types of transformations. This raises a red flag for buyers, as their banks might not allow them to finance a home with a non-permitted remodel. Keep it legal so you don’t run into this type of problem later on.
  • Great for older, smaller garages
    If you have a backyard garage that barely fits a car as it is, converting it to a home office or lounge would be a great way to add value. This creates a private space that any homeowner can enjoy. Consider this option if your garage mainly holds junk.
  • Think about your current needs
    Converting your garage into livable space could be very valuable to your family and its current needs. Adding some extra room for family activities like a movie room, playroom, lounge area, or multimedia center could add more enjoyment on a daily basis. Make the conversion work for your family right now, as you live in the home, without thinking about the future price tag. You can always convert the garage back to its previous form, especially if you don’t remove the door.

Your bonus room or garage conversion can be anything you imagine, and these ideas can be used to help you start the process of creating and building an amazing addition to your house. If you need any help or have any questions, contact Sweebe Architecture. Our design solutions always exceed our clients’ aspirations.

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