Will a Hot Tub Increase My Home’s Value?

Relaxing in a hot tub may appeal to you, but not to all the potential buyers who look at your home. What does that mean for your home's resale value?

The presence of a pool often has little to no effect on the value of your home. But what about a hot tub? Although hot tubs and backyard pools often require similar effort and expense for upkeep, the two differ in that it’s a lot easier for a home buyer remove a lightly-used hot tub.

So, let’s find out will your investment in a hot tub increase your home’s value?

The Investment Only Pays Off In Enjoyment

“I advise homeowners considering hot tubs to consider them as an investment in their own well-being, but nothing else,” says Andrew Helling, a licensed real estate agent in Nebraska and the founder of REthority.com. “When my clients see a hot tub, they have mixed reactions. But because they are cheap to remove, I’ve never lost a sale because of one.”

It’s unlikely that a homeowner who spent upwards of $60,000 to install and landscape an in-ground pool would turn around at sale time and drop the $4,000+ to fill it in, or the $10,000+ Hometown Demolition in Grand Rapids Mich., estimates demolition requires. On the other hand, getting rid of a hot tub may cost you just a few hundred dollars much less if you can do the work yourself.

Prospective buyers today have a higher degree of sophistication when it comes to health and hygiene, notes Helling. “They may not trust a used hot tub,” he says.

Furthermore, any hot tub that can be disconnected and moved even if it requires heavy equipment could be considered “personal property” by an appraiser. Thus, the hot tub would not count toward a home’s valuation. But a portable tub surrounded by substantial improvements requiring construction to enclose would be considered a permanent fixture, and thus part of the home’s value.

In general, Helling doesn’t push his clients to install a hot tub. “If you install one, you’ll probably get great enjoyment from it,” he says. “Just don’t expect to recoup your money, as most homeowners don’t see them as an amenity.”

How a Hot Tub Affects Your Home’s Value

Although you cannot consider your hot tub as an asset or an investment that increases your home’s value, Helling says it’s not a deal-breaker. Therefore, he generally considers a hot tub a neutral factor in valuation.

With that in mind, go ahead and add that steamy backyard oasis if it improves your enjoyment of your property and provides an opportunity for some fun and relaxation. Just know that this indulgence is just that: an investment in yourself, and nothing more.