Some homes come with a dedicated master suite, but if yours doesn't, it's an investment you may be contemplating. A master suite could give you more privacy, added storage, and a place to spread out. And if you're flipping a house, it certainly pays to consider putting in a master suite, as it could be a draw for buyers. But is a new master suite really worth the investment, or are you better off spending your money on something else?
What exactly is a master suite?
Many homes come equipped with a master bedroom -- a larger room that has its own bathroom attached. A master suite, on the other hand, implies a larger space that isn't just limited to a single bedroom and bathroom.
Often, a master suite will have a separate sitting room, sometimes with an area large enough for a sofa. Or, a master suite might have an alcove with an oversized walk-in closet and dressing area. You might even find a fireplace in a master suite. The more high-end the features, the more a master suite addition is likely to cost.
Is a master suite worth the money?
A new master suite generally won't come cheap. The average cost to put one in is $150,000, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). But the average amount of money recovered from that investment is just $75,000, which means that if you build a new master suite, you'll only get half of your money back in resale value. It's perhaps for this reason that only 3% of Realtors have suggested that sellers put in a master suite before attempting to sell their homes, and less than 1% of Realtors say that this specific project has helped close a sale.
Should you put in a new master suite?
If you're flipping a house, you may not get a lot of resale value out of a master suite addition, so you might instead want to focus on renovating an existing master bathroom or on another project that's likely to appeal to a wide range of buyers, like a kitchen remodel or new hardwood flooring. For many buyers, a basic master bedroom and bathroom is enough to satisfy the requirement of having a separate, private space, so a master suite shouldn't top your list of priorities.
On the other hand, if you're thinking of adding a master suite for your own enjoyment, that could be a worthwhile move despite the limited return on investment. A new master suite could serve as your personal sanctuary at home, and if you have young children, it's hard to put a price on having a nice space to escape to.
Remember, home improvements aren't always strictly about recouping money. If there's a project that will help you live more comfortably in your home, like a master suite addition, it could be worth pursuing regardless of the finances involved. Just be sure that if you go this route, you don't expect to recoup your full investment once the time eventually comes to sell.