Do Driveways add Value to a Home? (Guide)

Do Driveways add Value to a Home

Are you considering putting in a driveway and wondering if you do, will it add value if you decide to sell the house? 

Or is adding a driveway an expense you will not recoup at all if you should sell?  Read on to find the answers to your questions.

How a Driveway can Increase Your Home Value

There are many ways in which you can increase the resale value of your home and adding a driveway is one of them. 

  • Curb appeal:  This is what is called the visual attractiveness of a property or home when it is seen from the street.  It is the first impression a potential buyer would have if you are trying to resell your home.  If your driveway is old and cracked and the house and lawn are well maintained, the driveway can decrease the value of your home.  Always make sure that your driveway is well maintained.  Many times, potential buyers will not even consider a home without a driveway.
  • Reduce quote deductions:  Most people, when looking for a new home, look at the condition of the entrance to your home.  This includes the landscape, which the driveway is part of.  It can tell a prospective buyer about the state of the home and if it has been taken care of.  If it has, then this means that they do not have to worry about costs to repair it.  Potential buyers want to help reduce the price the buyer is asking for the home and often this is done by them seeing some repairs that need to be done so they try to negotiate a lower price to compensate for the expense of the repair.  If your driveway has severe damage or poor drainage, it will devalue your home.
  • Convenience:  Depending on where you live, some neighborhoods have narrow streets, and parking on them is impossible.  Also, no one wants to park on the street or have to fight to find a parking spot in front of or close to their house.  Offering a potential homebuyer a driveway in which to park their car is like free parking for them.  
  • Cost-saving and safety:  Cars seem to be safer if they are parked on the premises than being parked out in the street. This is especially true in unsafe neighborhoods.  With a driveway, you do not have to worry about someone parking in your space, it gives you some peace of mind and it makes it more convenient. 
  • Creates multi-space options:  Many people have more than one car and some ever have boats or an RV and they need places to park these vehicles.  When looking at houses to buy, check the driveway to make sure that there is space for more than one vehicle.  This will increase the value of your home over homes on the market that has no driveway or just room for one vehicle.

Types of Driveway Material

Many times, the value a driveway will add to the home will depend on the material it is made from.

Concrete:  This is a popular option for driveways.  In most cases, it can last for decades because it is so durable.

It requires little to no maintenance. 

If you live in a frigid climate, concrete may not be the best option because if you use de-icing on your car and it gets on the driveway it can cause the concrete to break down quicker. 

Concrete is also not the most attractive material and can stain easily. 

It is an affordable option as it costs on average $3 to $10 per foot.

Asphalt:  This is an even more affordable option at $2 to $5 per square foot. 

It is a mixture of asphalt cement, rock, and sand and generally comes in black.  It is like what you see on roads. 

If you have grease stains or oil spills, they will not show up. 

If it starts to look worn down, all you have to do is reseal it. 

This type of material is also more flexible than concrete so it is less likely overtime to crack.  If installed correctly, it can last 15 to 30 years. 

In the winter, snow and ice melt off faster than it does with other driveway material.

Gravel:  If you have a long winding driveway, this is a good option as it costs from $0.75 to $3 a square foot. 

The downfall with using gravel is that it requires a lot of maintenance to keep it looking nice.  You will have to rake it back into place, worry about weeds, and add a new layer each year. 

Gravel is not the type of driveway you want if you want to add value to a home.

Asphalt or Concrete:  Since either of these are a good option for a driveway, which one is the forerunner. 

When looking at both of them asphalt is one of the best driveway material. 

It is not as expensive as concrete, it does not take as long to put down as concrete, it is easier to maintain, and if starts to look rough, all you have to do is reseal it.

Conclusion

  • Having a driveway in good condition can be a highlight when selling your home.
  • The value of your home is also determined by the houses in the area, the type of material you choose for your driveway, and market conditions.
  • If you are unsure about adding a driveway, look at the other houses in the neighborhood. If almost all have driveways and yours does not, it will make your home not as desirable. 
  • In some instances, a driveway may decrease the value of a home by taking up space that was used for something more useful, like a patio.
  • In many instances, if your driveway is in great condition it can increase the value of your home by as much as the cost of the driveway.
  • Even if you are not reselling your home, having a driveway will add to the value of your home should you need to borrow against the equity or get a loan using the home as collateral.

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