From location and lot size to curb appeal and area schools, most people know the most common factors that can affect a home's property value. However, the list doesn't quite end there.
"Surprisingly, there are many out-of-the-box factors which may not be quite obvious that affect property value either positively or negatively," says Marlene De Cespedes, director of luxury sales at Douglas Elliman in Miami, Florida.
Here, she discusses four surprising aspects that homeowners should keep in mind when weighing the value of their property.
When it comes to landscaping, remember to look beyond your own yard. If a neighborhood has an ample amount of mature trees that provide a healthy canopy overhead, it can enhance property values. "Not only do tree-lined streets make our neighborhoods beautiful, they also provide privacy, improve air quality, and reduce noise," De Cespedes said, pointing to Miami neighborhoods Coconut Grove and Coral Gables as examples.
Most people want the world at their fingertips, and a home will enjoy a boost in property value if it's centrally located near shopping, dining, and entertainment— including art galleries, museums, and cultural centers. And if people can ditch the car and hoof it to these venues? Even better, she says: "Easy walkability and providing buyers with a sense of an urban lifestyle rich in culture can also be a factor in an increase in property value."
And while some local gems might give homes an unexpected boost in value, so do certain national-brand stores. A 2016 Zillow study found that homes within a one-mile radius of Trader Joe's or Whole Foods appreciated an average of 148 percent and 140 percent, respectively, between 1997 and 2014, where the typical U.S. home appreciated by 71 percent.
Although not based in science, certain bad omens may lead to a potential drop in property value. For example, if a death occurred at the property in the past or the address contains the number 13, potential future buyers who are superstitious may run for the hills. "It can become a deal breaker," De Cespedes says.
A home located near a park or a recreational space—such as a golf course, a natural area, or a specialty park—will reap the benefits in property value. Such green spaces are appealing amenities for homeowners who want to enjoy active lifestyles. De Cespedes adds: "Let's not forget that living near a dog park will keep Fido happy and healthy, too!"