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Four-Bedroom Homes: Everything You Need to Know

Hello, and welcome to the WRX Property Group website and blog. As we make our way through everything there is to know about buying or selling a home in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, and Guelph, we’ve come to the question of what different sizes and layouts are available for 2-bedroom, 3-bedroom, and 4-bedroom homes – and who might benefit from each size. We’ve already taken a look at two-bedroom and three-bedroom homes, so let’s finish up today with our final subject in the series: four-bedroom homes.

Four-bedroom homes are typically (but not always) the largest of the three varieties we’ve covered. This relative size allows them to serve a wide variety of purposes, for a diverse set of requirements. Whereas three-bedroom homes, and even more so, two-bedroom homes, are ideal starter homes for people just getting into real estate, four-bedroom homes are geared more toward established homeowners. That is not to say that your first home can’t or shouldn’t be a four-bedroom home: in many cases, it is simply the home that best meets your needs. But it’s not uncommon for a couple or young family to start out with a two- or three-bedroom home, sell that home in 5-10 years, and move into a four-bedroom home once their family has grown and/or they’ve become more financially secure. Four-bedroom homes are great for mid-size to large families, owners or co-owners who will be living with roommates, and for people looking to purchase purely as an investment. Let’s look at some common layouts for four-bedroom homes.


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Layouts

Four-bedroom homes are popular for many reasons; two of the main reasons are that there will always be families looking for enough space to accommodate their numbers, and people like the ability to have rooms set aside for a specific purpose. Owing to their popularity, there will always be a wide variety of layouts on the market, but even if the four-bedroom home of your dreams isn’t presently available, you can purchase with intent to remodel and renovate down the line (with the dual benefit of giving you the layout you want for a potentially lower price than buying the same house outright, and potentially increasing the home’s value for when you resell). In terms of model, four-bedroom homes certainly can come in the form of bungalows and bungalofts, but a larger number are two-storey homes. Three of the bedrooms and one (or two) bathroom(s) are typically on the second storey, with the master bedroom (sometimes with en-suite bathroom) and shared areas on the main floor. Four-bedroom homes can be spread out over 4,000+ square feet of space, or they can come in much more compact designs ranging in the mid 1,000 square foot area. These smaller homes can fit the same number of rooms, but they will of course be smaller, and with smaller shared rooms – a four-bedroom home of this size is good for a mid-size family living on a smaller plot of land.

One of the best ways to maximize space is building upward – it’s more affordable than building outward. An example of this is converting the upper half of your garage into an extra room (sometimes called a ‘Carriage House,’ or an ‘in-law suite’). Another key way to get the most out of a four-bedroom home is fully utilizing the basement; this can be achieved with a second kitchen, additional bedrooms, a bathroom, and more. A major consideration when it comes to four-bedroom homes is the size of each room, and the size of shared areas (particularly the kitchen and living room). It’s good to look at a variety of available four-bedroom homes, and compare both the bedrooms and the shared areas. Then, you’ll have to decide what’s most important to you: larger bedrooms, or larger shared areas? A factor in this decision is what you’re planning to use the home for: is it a family home, or a rental property? With four bedrooms available, many owners choose to devote one or more of the rooms to a specific purpose: this can be a bedroom devoted to a specific hobby, pastime, or activity (a games room, for example, or an exercise room), and another bedroom for work purposes. The fourth bedroom is frequently used as a guest room, and it can double as storage when there aren’t any guests. It comes down to how many people will be living in the home, and what you want to prioritize.

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Lifestyles

Four-bedroom homes are great for families. They have ample common space to share together, but multiple rooms to ensure everyone can get some privacy. A family of four or five (with one or two parents/guardians) can comfortably inhabit a four-bedroom home, with the parent(s)/guardian(s) sharing the master bedroom and each child having a room of his or her own. Growing families can make it work, too, with children of the same gender often sharing a room, or younger children sharing a room. Families larger than this and looking to ultimately move to a larger home can still benefit from a four-bedroom home in the meantime: as their family grows, they can enjoy their years in the four-bedroom, saving money if they can and also benefiting from the natural growth of housing prices. Particularly in hot markets like Kitchener-Waterloo, the consistent and significant appreciation of real estate value over the past few years means that five-ten years after purchasing a home within your price range, you’ll be able to sell it at a significantly larger price. Many variables are driving this increase, including natural inflation, low numbers of listings in the region, a growing population, and investment from the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

As with three-bedroom homes, four-bedroom homes are great to share with housemates. Two bathrooms are a fairly standard minimum in four-bedroom homes, and additional bathrooms beyond the base two only make it more attractive to groups of housemates. As an investment property, four-bedroom homes really shine: multiple potential revenue streams can help offset mortgage payments, allowing owners to maximize their profit from the eventual resale while minimizing their expenses in the meantime. This can be achieved through converting the rooms into individual apartments, with fellow renters sharing kitchen and common areas (and depending on the number of bathrooms, sharing a bathroom, too), or renting out the entire home to a family or group of renters (four-bedroom homes can be quite attractive to groups of students, who either can’t afford a home, or only want to rent for a set amount of time). The spaciousness of most four-bedroom homes also means the owner can live in it while simultaneously renting out other rooms. The ability to add Carriage House over the garage, or converting the basement into its own separate unit (with bedroom[s], kitchen, and bathroom), owners can live with renters at a minimum cost to their privacy.

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Conclusion

Four-bedroom homes can meet a wide variety of needs. They can be more expensive than two- or three-bedroom homes, but they extra versatility they provide is worth it for many people. With the Baby Boomers reaching retirement age, too, many people are choosing four-bedroom homes so that parents or grandparents can move into one of the extra rooms. Finally, four-bedroom homes are certain to be in demand, particularly in a growing region like Kitchener-Waterloo, so once you decide to resell, you can reasonably expect a quick turnover, and a healthy profit. If you’d like to know more, please don’t hesitate to contact us – we’re happy to be a part of your real estate journey.

Written by Will Kummer

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