10 signs you’re overbuilding for the neighborhood

top-10How do you know if you’re overbuilding? Here are ten signs for your mental checklist if you’re considering a significant addition to the size of your home.

You are overbuilding…

  1. If your house is going to be twice as large as all others in the neighborhood.
  2. If you no longer need Neighborhood Watch because your house towers over all others and is a watchtower in and of itself.
  3. If you have double the bedrooms of other homes in the neighborhood.
  4. If your house is mistaken for a motel or residential care facility.
  5. If you can see in every backyard on the street.
  6. If what you are building will yield little value in the resale market.
  7. If the larger size removes the rear yard and thus creates a negative for buyers.
  8. If prospective buyers think “Yikes, what were they thinking?” or “I would not want to live next to THAT house.”
  9. If shade from your house lowers energy bills for neighbors on every side.
  10. If buyers don’t have the expectation for such a large house in the neighborhood.

Obviously some of the points are only for fun, but you get the gist. If what you are doing is not consistent with the look and feel of the neighborhood as well as the expectations of the marketplace, then you’re probably overimproving your property. Watch a fun 30-second clip below of an overbuilt house I saw in Sacramento (and here is another in Woodland).

Anything you’d add to the list?

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  1. says

    Your example in the video is spot on. That house wouldn’t be out of place in other neighborhoods – like it or not, most neighborhoods in the Sacramento region are built around conformity. I think overbuilding sometimes happens when someone has lived in a home for a while – really likes something about their neighborhood but they need more space. Unfortunately they don’t always talk this over with anyone in the real estate industry before moving forward.

    • says

      Very well said, Carolyn. Thank you. The irony of the house from the video is that it would fit in a whole lot better just a few streets away – but clearly not on the steet it’s on. I think you’re right about the motivations people have. I can understand the value in use, but there will come a day to sell too, so that should be considered also. There certainly is something to be said about conformity. Thanks for your insight.

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