When is a room really a bedroom? I get this question all the time. Sellers typically believe the bigger their house exponentially it has more value. There are a few fundamentals to understand that help answer this question. The first is not all square footage is created equal. Meaning, your home value does not go up proportionally by the same amount if you have more bedrooms and square footage.
In every marketplace this holds true – the smaller the home the higher the price per square foot. Why? You’re spreading fixed cost over a larger area. Most houses have one lot, one kitchen, one garage, and other features that are more valuable than adding a room or finishing out an attic. From a buyer’s perspective, certain areas of the home have more utility than others. Same old adage always applies “Your home is worth what a buyer is willing to pay”. The more functional it is the more valuable it is.
Now back to when is a room really a bedroom? There is not one single fixed definition. From the perspective of a buyer, if it offers the utility of a bedroom then it is a bedroom. Local building and fire codes define what must go into a bedroom when constructed. From the perspective of the lender, it depends upon which standard applies to the type of loan. See this post from the Texas Association realtors that attempts to explain.