Q: Last year we bought a small (less than 1,000 square feet) condo, with two bedrooms and 1½ baths. Although the condo is in good shape for being 22 years old, it has not had any major improvements other than a bad tile job in the kitchen.

We would like to add a whirlpool tub in the main bathroom, but the only way for it to fit would be to remove a wall and extend the bathroom into the closet of the second bedroom. As I understand it, that would make the second bedroom a den.

This bedroom is very small anyway, so I don’t see it as much of a loss, but we don’t want to destroy the value of the condo.

Do you think the improvement would offset the loss of the second bedroom, or is it a bad idea?

By the way, there might be a way of making an opening between the second bedroom and the hall closet, but it would remove some of the storage space, which is in short supply.

A: The short answer is that your proposed whirlpool is a bad idea.

Because you are remodeling with an eye toward resale, we suggest that you seriously rethink turning your condo into what would effectively be a one-bedroom unit for the relaxation a spa would bring.

Not only would you be sacrificing much-needed space, but also, adding a jetted tub is much more than a weekend-warrior type of project.

Removing or moving walls to provide a location for the tub probably means relocating electrical outlets. The tub would require plumbing and wiring. Don’t forget the Sheetrock, tape, texturing and painting that will be involved.

Then, of course, there is the finish work. Do you plan to tile around the new tub? Will the flooring have to be modified or changed? Finally, a project of this scope will require city permits.

Even if you do all this yourself, we think the cost would be far more than any gain when you sell.

We suggest you invest your remodeling dollars in this condo with moving to a more suitable home in mind.

Things like updated flooring and fixtures and new carpet and paint will enhance the value of your home. You could explore redoing that bad kitchen tile job.

Any improvements you undertake should be directed at putting a new face on your older walls. You will get a lot more bang for your remodeling buck than you would with a spa. Perhaps your next home will either have spa or will more readily lend itself to installing one.

Bill and Kevin Burnett will attempt to answer your questions, although the volume of e-mail sometimes makes this impossible. Contact them at sweat-equity@comcast.net.

***

Send a Letter to the Editor for publication.
Send a comment or news tip to our newsroom.
Please include the headline of the story.

Show Comments Hide Comments

Comments

Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Success!
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Prepare for this fall with top agents & brokers at Connect Now this Tuesday.GET YOUR TICKET×
Limited time: Get 30 days of Inman Select for $5.SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription