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post #1 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 07:19 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm sure this question has been asked before, but searching didn't result in any meaningful hits.

Due to a job change, my wife and I need to move. The media room with my 100" Stewart Firehawk, DWIN TV3, etc. may not be able to come with me. The problem I'm having is that Real Estate agents don't seem to understand how to factor the media room and equipment into the value of the house. I'm all for taking most of the equipment, but there is a part of me that is excited about being able to start over again. However, if the price of the house is the same with and without the room, I'm taking my $20k worth of equipment with me.

Is this just the way it is? I expected that a media room/HT would have some impact on the value of the house.

Any experiences when selling your house with its HT?
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post #2 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 08:43 AM
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You might look at this thread:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...hreadid=509878

I noticed somebody in that thread worked out a deal on the side with the buyer to sell the equipment outside of the house deal.

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post #3 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 08:47 AM - Thread Starter
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I knew I remembered seeing a thread on this. Thanks for the link.
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post #4 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 09:05 AM
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Why don't you price the house as it has no HT and then list the HT as negotiable.
Then you will learn whether or not to move your EQ at the end.

It is all about quality...that is the picture

JVC & NEC 8" CRT with 106" wide Stewart screen. All NHT speakers driven by Pioneer Elite AVR and bluray

Custom dedicated 8 seat theater

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post #5 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 11:07 AM - Thread Starter
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That's my plan for now. I didn't have much choice given that the agents all priced the house without regard for whether it had a theater. Having a kid's playroom, that meant something. A theater didn't seem to matter, and that surprised me.
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post #6 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 11:16 AM
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I'm in firm belief that most if not all agents at least in my area are clueless tiwts that could handle no other jobs so ended up being agents
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post #7 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 12:46 PM
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I just sold my house last week after it was on the market for 4 days for more than we listed it due to a bid situation. I left the dedicated theater in place with speakers, screen, and CRT projector. This was a big attraction to the house and we ended up listing it for $25,000 more than we would have without the theater. The theater helped generate a lot of buzz on the house despite my realtor thinking otherwise. YMMV.
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post #8 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 01:04 PM - Thread Starter
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DIZ2, this is what I was hoping for. My agent seems to think that adding a granite countertop would add more value. At that point, I was confused. This woman is one of the most successful agents in the area.
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post #9 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 01:08 PM
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I think I would use this strategy.

After getting qualified comps for your home without factoring in the equipment, take the estimate and ADD the fair market value of replacing the theater. I wouldn't be bullied by a Realtor who doesn't know how to value a HT. In fact the reason she is successful may be that she convinces people to list their houses at the bottom of the range so she can get a quick sale. Then she boasts a high sales record. It's like a pool, some people will pay a premium for a house with a pool, others could care less and might even fill it in. The segment of the population who appreciate a well done HT is growing. Many don't want to be bothered setting it up so if it's ready to go, great.

That is your asking price. Now list the house and see what happens. If it's a tight market in your area maybe you'll have several full price bids. If not after a period of time someone will eventually make you an offer less than full price.

You counter by spitting the difference and stipulating that the equipment goes. Then see what happens. If you don't find a buyer that values the HT in your market , take the equipment and sell it used.
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post #10 of 36 Old 02-25-2005, 01:33 PM
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You are well advised.:)

It is all about quality...that is the picture

JVC & NEC 8" CRT with 106" wide Stewart screen. All NHT speakers driven by Pioneer Elite AVR and bluray

Custom dedicated 8 seat theater

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post #11 of 36 Old 02-27-2005, 08:51 PM
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I was channel surfing earlier tonight and caught the tail end of a segment on CNBC about home theaters/dedicated media rooms. The guest (didn't get the name or background) made a statement that HT rooms were becoming a hot commodity and house selling price payback on HT's was $2 for every $1 spent. I assumed he was speaking of upscale homes but then he said something about cost ranging from several hundred dollars (theater in a box) to over $100K.

Did anybody else see it? I wish I had seen the whole segment so I could better evaluate where he was coming from.

"I'm a fanatic without a cause and I believe in it!" - B. D. G.
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post #12 of 36 Old 02-28-2005, 12:27 PM
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My opinion:

One of the great things about having a home theater when trying to sell your home is that not everyone has one. This will help the buyers when they have seen 20 homes in one day when they can say, "The one that had the home theater in it". They will remember your house more and are probably more prone to come back to it.

How much value it would add would really depend on the people that are buying at the time. I would write in that it was negotiable and be fair with the value of equipment. If you have a really high-end speaker system, tell them that it will be XXX amount of money to keep it as-is or XX amount if you switch it out with something that will get the job done but is not over the top and take the high end stuff with you.

In the end, it really depends on too many things to really say how much it effects the sale price. If the house supports the home theater and is backed by other great features, it will sell at or above asking. If the theater is great and the rest of the house is in shambles or the house has lousy curb-appeal, too bad.

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post #13 of 36 Old 03-02-2005, 07:46 AM
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As a Realtor (out of MN but I work with people all over the country) I have to at least comment on this. Svonhof hit the nail on the head, it all depends on the buyers.

What I personally would do if I were representing you given your situation where you are ok with taking it or leaving it is list the home without the removable components included and put in the the notes to the agents (on the mls) that the theatre equipment is to be removed by the seller or can be negotiated by the buyer. Usually this would be handled in a personal property addendum (as part of the sale) or amendment (after you've negotiated the house only price) on the offer.

Good Luck!

Building a home theatre, obsession never felt so good.
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post #14 of 36 Old 03-02-2005, 08:46 AM
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All good advice. I've sold my last 2 homes because the HT (6th house now, 3 prior HT's) put them over the top against the competition. Sure, they were nicely done, and I gave up some easily replaced equipment to the buyers who can be novices as to which are the hot items to bargain for. Enjoy it and if it's dedicated, you'll get most, if not all, of your money back. In my case, I always do all my own work, so material costs are my only concern. If you paid a contractor for it, it's probably dedicated and superb, so that will be evident to the buyers that this is worth some bucks. Heck, show them the bill for the work.

HT's are increasingly popular, and the sophistication of buyers is increasing with that. I build them to enjoy them, but the whole time I am building, I am thinking resale-friendly in my design choices. Heck, I've only been in this house for 8 months and have completed a basement bath and bedroom with full kitchenette (perfect in-law set-up or rental) and am just about to start framing the HT across the hall. Plan to have it complete before my 1 year anniversary! And I know this will help me get a very good asking price some day.
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post #15 of 36 Old 03-02-2005, 10:10 AM
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I recently sold my house (north Atlanta) and realized a nice profit from my home theater efforts. Around here, theaters are a hot item for homes priced 400k and above. If anything, having a theater will generate good traffic as everyone is at least curious.

Also, people seem to be looking for a total entertainment space in a finished basement, meaning theater AND billiards room, wet bar, etc. As far as a truth check, my home sold for $52k more than a very comparable home in my subdivision, and sold in a much shorther period of time.

Since I did all the work in my basement myself, I had approximately $16,000 into it including equipment. This stat made it easy for my wife to give me a nice HT budget for our new house. However, based upon the majority use of my previous "dedicated theater", I will be constructing more of a media room this go around. Now if I could just get off my %ss and get to work on it!

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post #16 of 36 Old 03-02-2005, 01:18 PM
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Similar results, but on a much smaller level - my sister was able to sell her home that had in-walls in the family room and pre-wiring everywhere else (I did the wiring) over 12 other homes in the same area. Some of the homes had been on the market for months. She listed hers and within a week had 6 offers. We made sure the realator listed the entertainment value, and each person we spoke with said the pre-wiring made them choose her house over a comparable one.

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post #17 of 36 Old 03-02-2005, 03:16 PM
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If you haven't already signed a contract with the realtor I would invite a number of realtors to come and see the home and find one that has a better understanding of the value of your home as is.

Being successful is great for her but being successfull for you is what you want more.
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post #18 of 36 Old 03-07-2005, 05:59 AM
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I agree... it depends on the buyers. That is part of the reason I went with a family room style theater. The next person (including myself) can easily close the HT off if they want to go 100% dedicated.
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post #19 of 36 Old 03-07-2005, 03:14 PM
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markfh has a great idea... if the realtor doesn't know how to factor in HT cost, you need to find a different one. (I'm also in agreement that most realtors have no idea what they're doing in general anyway).

I would explicitly list the option to include HT equipment in the MLS.

Good luck!
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post #20 of 36 Old 03-07-2005, 04:53 PM
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A media room with a projector and screen is not like a dedicated theater.

Think of leaving your projector in the media room (as perceived by perspective buyers) as only bonus...but not a selling factor or otherwise adding value to your home. $20K worth of windows will have that effect...but not a Dwin.

It is analogous to leaving a $20K car in the garage. Who would do it unless they were desperate to sell??

I have a dedicated room in my house and would bet it would add little value to the house. I would only include the equipment (if I were to sell the house) if it was a deal clincher. Otherwise, I would substitute my dedicated theater with cheapo stuff before I put it on the market and say 'equipment included!' :D ......No one would know the difference! :D

Take your equipment with you. It won't add anything to your home's value.

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post #21 of 36 Old 03-07-2005, 08:54 PM
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In almost every aspect I agree with thebland. My only caveat would be that if you were wanting to upgrade your gear in your new home then it might make more sense to leave some things. Projectors in particular are rapidly progressing in quality. If you have a unit that it several years old and you've been eying that shiny new one then it might be worth letting it go. Amps and receivers fall into the same category. Speakers are a bit more time tested and if you like the ones you have then I think you should consider taking them with you and replacing them like thebland said.

I'd be willing to bet that if you're including the equipment in the deal that you would get more as a whole than you would selling off individual parts. After all, a buyer would be looking at it as a complete theater as opposed to nickel and diming you on ebay.

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post #22 of 36 Old 03-08-2005, 06:23 AM - Thread Starter
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thebland,

This is basically the conclusion I came to. We will price the house as if the gear doesn't stay. If the buyer wants to negotiate a fair price for everything to stay, then I'm willing to deal. However, there are one or two pieces that are not negotiable (my Krell TAS, for example). I will substitute my old Rotel amp for that beauty. I may be willing to talking about leaving the pj for the right price, but mostly it's all or nothing.
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post #23 of 36 Old 03-16-2005, 03:19 PM
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I recently took out a home equity loan to build a pool and a pool cabana (game room and larger home theater). The appraiser spent alot of time in my current theater and was impressed with the appearance, construction, equipment, etc. I told her I had approximately $25,000 in it and it would all stay if I sold the house. When I received the appraisal, I was somewhat surprised to see that she added exactly ZERO dollars and ZERO cents to the base price of the home because of the theater. I did not expect to get the full $25K back but I expected at least a small nugget. I called and asked what the deal was and was told that they did not know how to assign a value it so the answer was ZERO. They told me that the house was worth what comps were selling for and nothing more. I new this wasn't a good investment but I had no idea it was this bad! When I move, I will leave absolutely nothing unless the buyer wants to work a cash deal with me or adds to the base price of the house.

Mike
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post #24 of 36 Old 03-16-2005, 03:50 PM
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Interesting thread and last response..I think if you build a room for watching movies and want a return on it, a dedicated room may not be the way too go..Seems more of a multi purpose room will get you the most on your investment.Although i'm going to do a dedicated room..It's what me and the wife want,so we're going for family enjoyment first,and possible resale value will be a plus but not expected!I do agree though that with the prices of projectors getting more and more cheaper,and big screen tvs that media rooms will become the norm.Especially at around the $300K value.

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post #25 of 36 Old 03-16-2005, 05:19 PM
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FYI, this is from a friend in Arizona who sells homes:
Quote:
I've been of the opinion that HT basically separate you from the other homes as far as uniqueness. In a slow market, that is valuable. Similar to a home with an epoxy garage floor. That doesn't make the home more valuable than an identical home across the street. It just helps a homebuyer choose between the two homes. One obviously having a more
desirable garage.

With an HT system, I've always advised stating room "pre-wired" or "home
theatre ready" and remove the components. If the buyer is interested, they can inquire about the possible purchase of components using
a separate "bill of sale".

No offense to the HT crowd, but some buyers would rather not have a bonus room used for a singular purpose. A playroom for kids is also quite
attractive to homebuyers. Imagine the cost or returning the HT to its original state!

Scott
 

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post #26 of 36 Old 03-16-2005, 05:32 PM
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Here in eastern, NC the home theater is finally gaining some momentum for the middle class. Since typical middle class people need every inch of space in their homes a dedicated home theater isn't the norm. More often than not, a bonus room does the job. If I were building a new house right now, I would simply modify the existing bonus room plan to be more HT friendly with sound proofing upgrades, prewiring, decided equipment closet, dedicated equipment circuits, and maybe a riser. Beyond that, I think you're wasting your money on the average joe. Anyone who builds a 50k home theater in a 250k home and expects to get a decent return on it is in for a rude awakening. Take your equipment with you. Just my two cents.

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post #27 of 36 Old 03-16-2005, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by watchdoc
Here in eastern, NC the home theater is finally gaining some momentum for the middle class. Since typical middle class people need every inch of space in their homes a dedicated home theater isn't the norm. More often than not, a bonus room does the job. If I were building a new house right now, I would simply modify the existing bonus room plan to be more HT friendly with sound proofing upgrades, prewiring, decided equipment closet, dedicated equipment circuits, and maybe a riser. Beyond that, I think you're wasting your money on the average joe. Anyone who builds a 50k home theater in a 250k home and expects to get a decent return on it is in for a rude awakening. Take your equipment with you. Just my two cents.
I agree with this. Our 8 month old house *HAD* a great looking activity room upstairs, above the garage. Unfortunately, we quickly realized this open area allowed for too much sound to travel around the house. I'm in the process of doing exactly what watchdoc mentioned. I have closed off the 19'x20' area creating a 48" wide hallway leading to bedroom #3 and #4 and a 19'x16' Media Room. I'm doing as much as I can to isolate sound--double 2x4 wall, double drywall, green glue, insulation. The room will have a recessed AV rack in the back corner. Not counting acoustic treatments, I'll have about $2500 in this remodel.

My Media Room Construction thread. Work began 2/15/05, finished 7.1 install 6/2005. Sold house 7/2007.
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post #28 of 36 Old 03-17-2006, 12:24 PM
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My wife and I listed our home here in MD. on March 1st. We had an offer ten days later from a buyer for $20,000 higher than the closest listing price in the nieghborhood. This was due to the fact that we had a home theater installed. My only worry is the appraisal. One real estate agent told me that she spoke to the person that does her appraising and he said that it would add significant value to the home but not what we paid for it.
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post #29 of 36 Old 03-17-2006, 01:07 PM
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When I go to sell, I plan on taking most of the home theater dressing (sound panels, dark paintjob, etc) out of it and listing it as a rec room/kids playroom.

I do plan to list the fact that it is well soundproofed, since that is probably valuable in the context of a kids playroom! :D

Andy K.
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post #30 of 36 Old 03-17-2006, 01:15 PM
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Shhhhhh. Don't let me wife find this thread. She thinks that my plans to convert a basement into a home theater will add value to the house. I sold her on it with the "it's an investment" angle. ;)

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