5 Popular Ways to Expand Your Living Space

While “location, location, location” was once the above-and-beyond concern for homebuyers, research shows that priorities are changing. Today, something else reigns supreme on homebuyer wishlists: space.

A recent homeownership survey indicates that homeowners now value additional indoor and outdoor space—for everything from overnight guests to al fresco entertaining—more than they value prime locations.

While moving makes sense for some homebuyers, others are embracing creative solutions for maximizing square footage at home. In doing so, they’re not only enhancing their own quality of life, but also increasing the value of their homes in the eyes of prospective buyers.

The good news? Even if a full-blown addition isn’t in your near future because of budget or space constraints, you can still get in on this popular trend.

Read on for a roundup of five popular ways to expand your living space.

1. Turn a Garage into an Extra Room

Converting a garage into a functional living space is a brilliant way to add valuable square footage without undertaking an extensive home improvement project.

Especially appealing for homeowners looking to cater to their unique lifestyle needs, garages are suitable for many types of rooms, including home offices, guest bedrooms, playrooms, home theaters, home gyms, entertainment areas, man caves, and more.

If you’re thinking of going this route, you’ll first need to determine whether a garage conversion is feasible, depending on your local zoning regulations and building codes. Some communities and neighborhoods may have restrictions on garage conversions, while others may require specific permits.

Additional considerations for garage remodels include insulation and climate control, flooring, lighting and windows, and storage solutions.

With indoor-outdoor living also having a major moment, garage enclosure systems are also an attractive option for many homeowners. By adding a sliding garage door screen to your design, you can transform your garage into a versatile and adjustable indoor-outdoor space suitable for relaxation, recreation, and more.

2. Create a Sunroom with a Patio Enclosure System

The benefits of enclosure systems aren’t limited to garages. They’re also an excellent fit for turning other outdoor spaces—such as decks, porches, patios, and pool areas—into sunrooms.

While a traditional sunroom addition can cost as much as $80,000, a porch or patio enclosure system offers the abundant benefits of this sunny showpiece without the exorbitant price tag.

In addition to providing additional living space and yielding a solid ROI, adding on a sunroom also offers natural light, adjustable ventilation, and tranquil views of your home’s natural surroundings—all with the comfort and protection of an indoor space, thanks to your porch enclosure.

The shelter from the elements provided by your new 3- or 4-season sunroom also means you’ll be able to extend usage of your deck, porch, or patio through the changing seasons for relaxing, reading, or spending quality time with family and friends.

Many factors go into creating beautiful and functional sunrooms. If you’re looking to use your space all year long, a portable heater will help you ensure comfortable temperatures. Attractive furniture and decor will further enhance your sunroom’s feel and functionality. For example, plants, rugs, cozy seating, and natural materials can all contribute to the look and feel of a restorative retreat.

3. Add on New Rooms or Levels

Adding a new level or rooms is a more ambitious and expensive endeavor than the other entries on this list. But if you’ve got the time and the budget, it can be an excellent solution for growing families.

Depending on the specifics of your home’s design and your lifestyle goals, you’ve got two options when it comes to additions: expanding horizontally or expanding vertically. The former not only offers increased space, but also presents the opportunity to re-imagine your home’s layout and functionality in a way that is tailored to your family’s unique needs.

On the other hand, expanding your home vertically by adding a new level is ideal for adding bedrooms, home offices, and other types of spaces.

A complex and costly undertaking, home additions may require the services of an architect or engineer to assess its feasibility.

Furthermore, factors like layout and functional design, building codes and permit compliance, and foundational and structural considerations also come into play with a major addition.

4. Transform an Unused Bedroom into an Office

Today’s homeowners aren’t just looking for more space. They’re looking for more functional space that supports and enhances how they live, work, and play in their homes.

For many homeowners, guest bedrooms that sit empty and unused for months at a time are the embodiment of dysfunctional spaces—especially with the ongoing shift toward remote, hybrid, and flexible work arrangements. With many people either requiring or seeking dedicated workspace at home, they’re choosing to repurpose their underused bedrooms into home offices.

Some elements to consider when designing a productive and personalized home office environment include ergonomic furniture, lighting and ambiance, and technology and connectivity.

5. Finish your Basement

Finishing your basement is another clever way to unlock the hidden potential of your home. Often relegated to being neglected storage spaces, basements can be a blank canvases for bringing your vision to life in a way that speaks directly to your lifestyle aspirations—whether you’re thinking of adding a home theater, cozy guest suite, home gym, or multi-functional space.

As with all the ideas on this list, converting your basement into a finished area will involve some special considerations, including floor and wall coverings, waterproofing, heating and cooling, and lighting.

Using one or more of these thoughtful transformations to expand your living space can result in a home that better aligns with your evolving lifestyle. With careful planning and execution, you can create a spacious and welcoming environment that your family will enjoy for years to come.


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