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Tips from The Block: Does Off-Street Parking or a Granny Flat Add Value?

With the teams on The Block fighting it out to maximise the value of their Elsternwick homes, we asked Noel Jones’s Daniel D’Assisi whether off-street parking and granny flats are worth the investment.

“The extra space provided by studios, granny flats and garages is more often than not considered a great addition to your property,” advises Daniel, who is acting as Sticks and Wombat’s auctioneer.

“Whether you require the space to accommodate family members, park vehicles, for storage or even as a work from home option, these types of spaces can be a great addition,” he says.

Granny flats and studios are not just a place to store infrequently used items, but can be highly sought after spaces in their own right. The additional space can be used as a teenage retreat, as an extra bedroom for guests or as the perfect base for a home business. If a bathroom and kitchen is attached a granny flat has a myriad of uses, perfect for a nanny or home carer, or as the name suggests – just great for your granny!

Granny flats have another hidden benefit – as income producers. “With the direction Melbourne property prices have taken in recent years we are also seeing new trends forming to generate an income from the family home,” explains Daniel. “Owners are utilising services like Stayz and Airbnb and in certain parts of Melbourne where parking is scarce we are even noticing leasing options available for garages.”

Depending on its location, a granny flat can be rented out for up to $600 a week. There are many considerations to be made when planning a granny flat, however. Building consent, height, distance to boundaries, floor space and storm water drainage are just some of the factors to consider. Contact your council before you begin to plan.

Garaging is typically considered a good investment as buyers perceive garages as a space with multiple uses. Beyond car parking garages are useful for storage, as an extra leisure space or as a workshop.

If you don’t have the room or budget for a garage other covered off-street parking options are worth considering. Carports and shade sails are two options. While you will still require a permit for a carport, shade sails may not require council approval if they are under three metres in height. Check with your council.

The value of off-street parking depends on the scarcity of parking in your area and the size of your property. While smaller properties can get away without off-street parking, buyers of larger homes often expect parking options to be included.

Granny flats, garages and studios are likely to make your home more desirable when the time comes to sell. “If you have the space and it’s not going to detract from the aesthetics of your home these are a great option,” confirms Daniel.