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It’s All About the View: Adding Value to a House

In real estate, location is a crucial factor that dictates a property's value. The neighborhood, its accessibility, and a good view are just some of the elements that constitute a good location.

You can always beautify or upgrade your home, but a good view is something you can't control – it's usually as-is. While you can upgrade your kitchen counter or add a roof to your patio, you can't modify the lake view from house decks or balconies.

When you're building your home, you get more options on the view. You can add a viewing deck or have your balcony overlooking the river below. The home you build can revolve around getting the most out of the picturesque view.

If you're planning to move to a newly built home instead, you'll find that houses with a great view of the mountains or the city are available at higher costs. Is it worth paying more just for a scenic view?

How a Great View can Add Value to a Property

The quickest way to determine how much a view adds value to a property is to compare two identical houses, with only one having beautiful scenery. A place that sits in a location with a breathtaking view of a body of water can be more valuable, especially if you're planning to sell it in the future.

Although, you'll find no straight answer when it comes to the actual value. However, other qualifiers can help give reasonable estimates, which you'll discover below.

Ground Level (Unobstructed)

Houses with a view of a large open area that sit on the ground level belong to this category. It could be a meadow or woodland, as long as it's a non-residential space. Many people desire these prime properties since access to a good view is scarce when all neighboring houses are on ground level.

Having this kind of view can increase a home's value from 1% to 2.5% as long as it remains unobstructed. A backdrop of mountain ranges from afar can increase it to 3%.

Medium Elevation (Unobstructed)

A house will fall under this category if it sits on top of a small hill. The house has an elevated position offering an obstruction-free view of the areas around it. However, it's still not high enough to see farther than the houses in the community.

The medium elevation is still better than the ground level. The combination of having an overlooking view of the neighboring houses below and the open area can increase a property's value from 6% to 8%.

High Elevation (Unobstructed)

Houses on high ground level, offering a view beyond the community, have a better value than those in medium elevation. Seeing the entire city right from your home gives a significant boost.

However, the actual city plays a significant part. Tulsa's view does not add much value compared to an overlooking view of Los Angeles. If you have an unobstructed view from high elevations, the substantial increase in property value can range from 9% to 12%.

Rooftop (Partially Obstructed)

Even if it sits on ground level, a house with a rooftop has a higher value than those without one. It can still allow you to see part of the neighborhood from higher ground, even with a partial obstruction. A rooftop view can give a substantial boost in property value, around 3% to 5%.

Water View (Unobstructed)

This category is the most coveted, boosting a property's value by up to 80%—depending on the actual location. Bodies of water such as a lake, bay, river, or ocean add a considerable amount, with the ocean view giving the highest.

If the house's view is that of a lake and not an ocean, it can still get a higher valuation if there are no obstructions. Plus, the more rooms there are in the house with access to the scenery, the more significant the boost.

A $115 million beachside mansion in Malibu is an excellent example of how a view can affect a property's value. Strip this house of its location, and you'll have a mansion with a lower valuation.

Some people still buy beach properties that have a significant risk of tidal flooding brought about by the rise of sea level. While it affects only 18 states, from Maine to Texas, the risk is still something you should consider long-term.

Is a Home with a Great View Worth the Cost?

Some people prefer homes overlooking the ocean, while others are content living inland with a beautiful view of nearby woodlands. In general, evaluating a home's worth all comes down to your personal preferences. 

However, you also need to consider if a home you're moving into will be able to retain its view long-term. Is there a threat of erosion in the future? Is the view protected from possible conversion to a commercial district? You don't want to spend extra to have a scenic view, only to end up losing it years later because of a high-rise tower construction.

Even if you're planning to sell the property in the future, you won't get the markup you want if the view becomes obstructed. On the same note, it would be a challenge selling a property that's bound to experience tidal flooding in the future. Most homebuyers are now conscious of the effects of climate change in beach properties, causing a decline in coastal real estate.

Safety and convenience go hand-in-hand with a house that offers a great view. While easy access to a sandy beach is a great option, it can be tough to sell if the location is inconveniently too far away from the city. Unless you're accustomed to rural living, the view may not be worth the cost.

Buying a home with a fabulous view of the meadows or mountain range is more worth the cost if you also have access to a major town or city. 

Choosing a Home with Great View is a Good Start

A home with a great view is a keeper if it's also safe and convenient. Location is not only about the lake or mountain near a house. A good neighborhood and amenities also play a big part, as well as easy downtown access.

Find your next home that offers more than just a great view at Oberer Homes.

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