Adding a Rooftop Deck in Home Builds

real estate

Adding a Rooftop Deck in Home Builds

How Builders Can Add Rooftop Decks to Houses

Sunny rooftop decks are quickly gaining popularity as a feature in new homes. Homeowners love the added outdoor space and there’s an appeal to turning a barren rooftop into an oasis filled rooftop deck with comfortable seating and greenery.

What are rooftop decks and why are they becoming more and more popular? Let’s learn more about rooftop decks so that you can decide whether you’d like to include this feature in your next home build project.

What is a Rooftop Deck?

As a builder you might be inclined to define “roof deck” as the foundation of a roofing system. The materials used might include steel, concrete, cement or wood. However, the definition also refers to a flat portion on top of the roof and this space can also be used as a terrace or sundeck.

Why are Rooftop Decks Becoming so Popular?

Simply put, outdoor space is an important feature that many modern home buyers have come to expect. And according to MarketWatch, rooftop decks are a leading trend right now.

Pete Reeb, a principal at John Burns Real Estate Consulting in Irvine, estimates that 5% of the current projects he’s seen include plans for rooftop decks. Reeb expects that percentage to rise, explaining that, “Builders are finding great success in attracting buyers and beating the competition by offering thoughtfully designed and integrated rooftop decks in new home projects.”

Where Should Rooftop Decks be Built?

Like so many home features, rooftop decks will perform better in some regions versus others. If you’re considering adding rooftop decks to your builds, ask yourself the following questions:

  • In general, do people in this climate like having decks and spending time outside?
  • What is the weather like? Warmer climates tend to see more outdoor spaces. According to Reeb, the Southwest, Texas, the Pacific Northwest, Southern California and even the East Coast are all hot markets for rooftop decks.
  • Is there a worthwhile view? Mountains, lakes and twinkling cityscapes are all sought after views, but they’re hardly the only views worth accessing.

Do Rooftop Decks Increase the Value of a Property?

Since building a basic rooftop deck on a new home can cost approximately $25,000 on the low end, it’s important to assess whether incorporating these decks will add value.

Again, Pete Reeb has some useful insights. He says that rooftop decks usually add about $30,000 to $50,000 in value, which equals around 6% to 8% of the total valuation of an average house. For example, a wood deck added to a home in San Francisco can give builders a 147% return, or nearly 50% in profit on a $10,000 deck.

That’s an impressive return, though. On average, builders were able to recover 75% of the overall cost of building a rooftop deck, across all real estate markets that were surveyed. Before incorporating a rooftop deck into your home builds, you’ll want to run through the numbers.

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