Spend $40,000 building a studio, and get it all back!

David Mellor

David Mellor is CEO and Course Director of Audio Masterclass. David has designed courses in audio education and training since 1986 and is the publisher and principal writer of Record-Producer.com.

Tuesday October 29, 2019

You could spend $40,000 building a studio and lose it all. Or you could get that money back. Which would you prefer?

It sounds too good to be true, but it isn't. OK, you do have to have the money in the first place, and you have to be prepared to leave it invested in your studio for all the time you record in it. Ultimately however, you could spend £30,000 UK pounds or $40,000 US dollars or the equivalent building a studio and lose it all. Or you could get that money back. Which would you prefer?

Here's a scenario. You want the perfect environment to record in. You already have the equipment, you just need the building. So you build a shed in your yard. (OK, so you might not have a yard yet, but you will one day).

You erect the shed, and inside you build a massive block work interior shell, which becomes your soundproof room. This is what costs most of the money. Eventually after you have put in the acoustic treatment and air conditioning, you have the ideal place to record.

But after a while, you have to move house. Out of curiosity, you ask your real estate agent how much value your studio adds to the property. "Almost none", she replies. Sheds and outbuildings do not add value in a potential purchaser's eyes.

Now, if you had built your studio as an extension to your house rather than as an outbuilding, then it becomes a room. Now rooms do add value to your house. And as houses tend to increase in value over the years, you will probably get back more than your original investment when you come to sell.

Of course you'll have to build your studio all over again, but at least you'll have the money to do it.

P.S. How do I know this? There were two adjacent almost identical houses for sale, one with a £30,000 studio outbuilding in the yard, one just the house. The one without the studio had the higher price. (I bought the other one!)

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