Some people in North Tacoma use their garages as workshops. Others use them for overflow storage. Some people actually use them the old fashioned way – for parking cars. Regardless of how it’s used, a garage in Tacoma’s North End definitely adds value to a property.
People love the North End of Tacoma for its historic Craftsman and Victorian homes and its quaint tree-lined streets, but many older homes weren't built with a useable garage. Some of the garages that were built are narrow, single bay structures that can’t necessarily accommodate a modern vehicle. Others offer tandem parking in the basement, while some of the grander homes built at the turn of century have garages that were originally carriage houses.
If a home has no off-street parking whatsoever, that can be a deal-breaker for a lot of buyers, regardless of their price range. A carport may be acceptable, but it really depends on the design of the structure and on how much security it offers. The bottom line is that off-street parking seems to be the bare minimum that many buyers will accept, whether it's a garage, a carport, a driveway or just a parking pad. If it's a garage, the bigger the better. Several of our listings have sold quickly in large part because they’ve had a good sturdy two-car garage. Other listings have languished if they’ve lacked a garage.
If you’re buying or selling a home in the North End, you should consider the garage (or lack thereof) and make sure that parking accommodations are factored into the purchase price. If you’re thinking about making home improvements with a good rate of return and you don’t have a garage, you should definitely consider adding one. We’ve seen appraisers add $20-30K to a comparable sale that doesn’t have a garage, depending on the size and usability of the structure. There are obviously guidelines and requirements that you’d need to follow, but much of the investment that you make in a new garage will come back to you at the time of sale. For additional information about adding a garage in Tacoma’s North End, visit the city’s Planning and Development Services Department website.
Jeff Williams is a top-producing Realtor with Windermere Chambers Bay, specializing in residential real estate in Tacoma, Gig Harbor, University Place and Lakewood.
Jeff Williams: (253) 303-1135