The Value of a Custom Feature
I recently had the opportunity to view a very nice custom home here in the Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge/Sevierville area. The purpose of our meeting was to discuss with the seller the prospects for marketing their large home after another well qualified firm had failed to sell the property. The house is located in one of the area’s finest communities and I noted that the house was very attractive from the outside as I drove up. Obviously I was eagerly anticipating viewing the inside of their residence and was also excited about marketing their executive calibur home.
When I arrived at the house and rang the front doorbell the seller came out through the garage and asked me to enter his home via the same manner. Many folks prefer to use a side door entrance to their homes and I didn’t think much at all of this. When I entered the garage the owner explained to me that this was his pride and joy in the home. He went on to tell me that he had spent more on the garage than on any other room and I soon saw why. The garage had a complete kitchen in one corner with a full set of quality appliances, a myriad of cabinets, a full sink, and much more. In fact, the owners said that they liked to spend time in the garage and had placed a dining room table and chairs so that they could not only cook but could also eat there.
As I toured the rest of the home I saw that everything else was more typical and the house was indeed lovely. There was even another kitchen and dining room inside that were much more traditional. When we recommended a price for the house I could tell that the seller was uncomfortable. He indicated that he had more in the home than he would likely net at our suggested asking price. This was the clearest example I have ever seen of how what one person values another may not. In fact, his sizable investment in the garage kitchen cannot be recovered unless we can find someone who values this feature as much as the current owners do. In this case that will prove to be a very difficult challenge indeed.
The lesson of this story is to be so very careful when building a custom home or remodeling a property that the money you invest is placed in areas that are likely to be of value to potential buyers of your property. The best areas of your home to spend money are the kitchen (preferably NOT in the garage please), the master bath, and in landscaping. Decks and other enhancements outside are very good places to spend more as well. If you would like us to market your Smoky Mountain home please let us know.