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How a garden can add 5-7% to the value of your home and save you $530 a year

Find out why adding a garden can both increase the value of your home by 5-7% and save you $530 a year in expenses?

Onto the numbers…

Here’s an unsettling fact: Americans spend $44 billion a YEAR on ornamental landscaping and only $2.5 billion on food gardening.

Why?  Lots of reasons, but the one that seems to lock it in is that ornamental landscaping is considered vital to the resale value of a home.  A garden isn’t.

That’s likely an outdated concept.  Anecdotal evidence suggests that gardens as well as chicken coops (many of the high-end homes I’ve been to recently either already have one or thinking about putting one in) are increasingly being seen as essential amenities for upscale homes.  The data seem to agree:

  • Nearly a third of all American households have food gardens and that number is growing quickly.
  • More than half of the people who are growing food at home (or in a community garden) are doing it because they want better tasting/safer/higher quality food.
  • Nearly half the people who garden have a college education (who knew?) and gardening is spread equally across the country and income groups.  So, this isn’t isolated.

Additionally, everything I can find on the impact of gardens on home resales shows that a home near to a high quality food garden is worth much more than one without one.  How much?  One rigorous study I read found that the impact of even a nearby community food garden is 5-7%!
Raised bed

How a Garden Stacks Up Against Other Home Improvements

Let’s look at the impact of home improvements on resale.  Here are some representative figures from the real estate site, Zillow:

  • Minor Kitchen Remodel.  Cost: $14,917   Return on resale:  $14,645   Percentage Return:  -1.8%
  • Major Bathroom Remodel.   Cost: $26,060  Return on resale: $24,264 Percentage return: -6.9%

Here’s how a garden stacks up:

  • Average cost of a garden per year (what people spend today):  -  $70
  • Average value of a garden per year (in produce):  + $600
  • Average value of a garden per year: + $530

So, the garden improvement not only pays for itself, it potentially increases the return on the resale of a home by:  5-7%.  Wow.  In contrast, the kitchen or bathroom remodel don’t even increase the value of the home more than they cost.

You can see where this is going.  There isn’t another home improvement that will both greatly increase the value of the home while saving you money.

Given the economic dislocation underway, food gardens will radically increase in importance when calculating a home’s value in the near to long-term future.  The good news is that gardens are already positively impacting home prices.

That’s insight you can use right now.    It’s also a great excuse to get outside, get fit.

Your always looking for an edge you can use analyst,

JOHN ROBB

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Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Devin

    If there is not a near-term food shock to change perceptions quickly, IMO a lot of the action will be in the middle ground between ornamental landscaping and food gardens – low-maintenance, low effort edible landscapes using in more of a permaculture style.

    See:
    http://www.rosalindcreasy.com/edible-landscaping-basics/

  • Captian America

    Sources, please.

  • Joe

    Why doesn’t the site have an Atom or RSS feed? I know you can get email notifications of posts, but I find that very inconvenient.

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