With a View

The feeling you get from waking up in the morning to see the sun peeking over the horizon or the waves crashing on a beach can completely change your demeanor. Surroundings often contribute to a person's state of mind so it's no wonder that people who stare out their home's windows and look upon a green dumpster or a brick wall find the feeling of invigoration to be slightly foreign.

There really is nothing like dining in a room that overlooks the countryside or relaxing on a balcony at night from which you can admire the city lights. Anyone who says a view doesn't matter is lying.

A view is something a home either has, or it doesn't. This isn't something that a homeowner can add with renovation or remodeling. A view is an intrinsic part of each piece of property. It will never deteriorate or go out of style and it's the one thing you can count on which will never need replacement and will continue to hold its value over the years. In fact, as more towns and cities expand there are fewer and fewer homes available with views so the houses that do possess this characteristic will continue to mature resale value.

Popular Views Include:

- Beach views

- Ocean views

- Lake views

- Harbor views

- Views of a national or state monument

- Views of a famous attraction (i.e. the Golden Gate Bridge)

- Mountain views

- Views of the countryside

- Views overlooking the city

- Views of the horizon

Of course, the importance of a view to the resale value of a home will be more pertinent in towns or cities that are in close proximity to natural wonders, like mountains, rivers, lakes and oceans. There are also other factors that influence how important a view will be to potential homebuyers in certain areas.

Contributing Factors to How a View will Affect Resale Value:

- Quality of the view

- Housing stock is available in the area

- Price category of the home

- Amenities in the home

- Profile of the typical homebuyer in the area

The quality of the view is one of the most important things to assess when it comes to investing in a home with resale value. A home with any sort of view at all will typically cost quite a bit more than a home with no view so it's essential to evaluate the quality of the view before forking over any money.

If you have to step out onto a balcony, take four paces to your right and stand on your tiptoes peering over the roof at nature's splendor you are not in a home with a good view, or even a partial view.

Homes with a partial view may be a good investment because often trimming a few trees or building an addition will turn the view from partial to full. Usually when a house is said to have a partial view it means that there is some sort of obstruction blocking the view. If you're lucky this obstruction will be natural, like a tree or bush that you can trim or cut down. Obviously if the obstruction is concrete, like another home or building, it will be impossible to improve the view. Keep in mind that a home with a partial view is still superior, in terms of resale value, to a home without a view at all.

The best view you can ask for is panoramic, meaning that that there is a wide, unobstructed view of an entire surrounding area. Whether this is offered from a living room window, or from an outside deck or patio it's a priceless accent to any home. The most sought after homes will offer unobstructed views from more than one room in the house.

Housing stock available in the area will also contribute to how a view influences resale value. In an area where many homes with quality views are available, you will undoubtedly pay less for a home with a view therefore the resale value may also be low. On the other hand purchasing a home with a view in an area that has very few homes of this type available, because of the local market or the location of the neighborhood in relation to the mountain or ocean, will usually guarantee a high resale value.

The price category of the home will also contribute to how much additional money buyers are willing to fork over for a view. A view will be worth more when you see it from the bedroom of a large home on the beach than it will be from the balcony of a condo in a large high-rise building. A large house may cost tens of thousands of dollars more than any surrounding real estate if it offers a view, while a condo or apartment with a view may only cost a few thousand more than non-view units.

Just as a large, expensive home will influence how much money a view is worth, so will the number of other attractive amenities in the home, whether it's loft, townhouse or a mansion.

Other Amenities that Contribute to the Worth of a View:

- Patios, backyards or balconies

- More than 2 bedrooms

- More than 2 bathrooms

- A garage

- A swimming pool

- A hot tub

- A fireplace

- Quality flooring

- A well-maintained interior

- A well-maintained landscape

- Special added touches that contribute to the home's character (i.e. a spiral staircase, crown molding, wood or marble flooring, arched doorways, French doors)

The view is part and parcel of this list of amenities, but unlike these other amenities a non-existent view can't be improved. A dilapidated kitchen can be remodeled and a swimming pool can be added to a backyard, but where there is no view, there will always be no view. This is why the view tops many people's lists when they rhyme off characteristics of a dream home. The view is coveted because it is usually quite rare.

Because a home with a view can be a big investment it is important to do some research about the area you are buying in before you spend your life savings on a down payment.

Resale Value Research for Homes with a View:

- Ask for the honest opinion of a realtor in the area to see what they think the resale value of the home you are looking at will be based on current market conditions.

- Obtain a professional appraisal for concrete information about possible resale value.

- Request a comparative market analysis from a local realtor. This will pinpoint the area that you are looking at buying and list the sales activity of homes in that neighborhood.

- Compare homes in the same price range to the one you are thinking of investing in see how they stack up against each other.

- Look into average time it takes to sell a home.

- Look at homes for sale versus homes sold.

Ultimately the amount of money each person is willing to pay for a specific view is somewhat subjective. Someone who has grown up in the country may be willing to pay more for a view of rolling hills and pastures than the average person and similarly someone who enjoys spending every spare moment on the water will pay a mint for a view of the ocean.

Investing in a home with a view you really can't go wrong because there will always be a buyer out there who values the scenery as much as you do. There are actually very few people who can say that they can't see the value of living in a place with lovely surroundings. The better the view, the better the resale value.

So when you are looking at homes with views try to think of the view as you would a fine jewel. Small, flawed gems in mediocre settings will sell for a good amount of money but large, perfect gems in stunning settings will always be worth significantly more.