PROPERTY NEWS - With the rising cost of living, many struggle to find room in the budget for a gym membership. A way around this is to convert one of the rooms within the home into a gym space.
Not only could this save the homeowner some much-needed cash, but it also holds the potential to increase the value of the home.
According to Adrian Goslett, regional director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, a well-designed gym space could set a home apart - especially within the luxury market.
"While well-designed gym spaces hold the potential to increase the home's appeal, thereby increasing a home's value, poorly fitted workout rooms will achieve the opposite, drastically lowering the value of a home," Goslett cautions.
To work out whether the gym space will increase or decrease the home's value, homeowners should consider various factors. The first is whether there is space within the home to use for this purpose.
"In many cases, an additional bedroom or office space is likely to offer more appeal than a gym room will offer. However, if the home already has ample bedrooms and a study space, then converting the room into a gym will be a value-adding decision."
For those who do not have the space, there is always the option to convert a room into a gym and then simply stage it as a bedroom or office when one wants to sell. In situations like this, Goslett warns that it becomes even more important to safeguard against any wear and tear that might result from using the space as a gym.
"To save themselves the expense of costly repairs when it comes time to sell, homeowners should consider things such as flooring and adequate ventilation. Heavy gym equipment and weights could scuff or dent the flooring, so it is advisable to put down rubber matting as a preventative measure.
"Poorly ventilated rooms are also likely to develop an unpleasant odour over time. Homeowners should therefore consider installing an air-conditioning unit in this room," Goslett recommends.
Goslett suggests that homeowners consult a local real estate adviser to find out whether an exercise space will have any effect on the value of the home.
"Real estate advisers will know about previous sales within the suburb and can therefore advise on whether a renovation such as this will increase or decrease the appeal of the home. Especially for those who know they are going to sell within the next few years, I would recommend speaking to a real estate practitioner before going ahead with this conversion," he says.
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