The True Cost of Adding a Curling Rink to Your Backyard

The True Cost of Adding a Curling Rink to Your Backyard

The True Cost of Adding a Curling Rink to Your Backyard

Let’s talk about curling. No, not the thing you sometimes do to your hair, but rather the Olympic sport involving ice, brooms, and stones. It’s a much bigger, much colder version of shuffleboard, and some of the Olympians wear clothes like this, so you know it’s great.

The sport itself is played by two teams of four who take turns sliding a giant granite stone in the hopes of landing it within a circular target marked on the ice. Much like shuffleboard, it’s harder than it looks, and some people have decided it’s not enough to engage in the unusual sport during the odd trip to a curling center, and have instead decided to create their own curling rink in their very own backyard.

In Canada, Dave and Natal Laycock built one, and, if you’re feeling inspired, here are some directions for you to make your very own curling rink this winter season. Obviously you need some very cold weather, and a space big enough for a full “sheet”, which is what a curling rink is technically called. Just how, though, does such a specialty backyard centerpiece affect the price of your home when it’s finally time to pack up and move on?

Which brings us to our very provocative blog title! Say you’re tasked with the unenviable job of selling a home in the dead of winter with a curling rink smack dab in the middle of the backyard. Beautiful, functional, even fun though it may be, curling isn’t exactly a well-known pastime, and most prospective homebuyers are more likely to be wooed by a nice gazebo or hot tub rather than a curling rink that will slowly but surely melt into a soggy swamp come spring.

To use a more common example, private tennis courts have long been a symbol of wealth and luxury. After peaking in popularity in the ’70s, tennis still drew around 27 million Americans in 2011, and many a large home sports its own tennis court in the backyard. Tennis courts are a good deal more expensive, and more permanent, than curling rinks since they require a large amount of concrete, and can, on average, set you back $30-60k. Other backyard renovations cost a lot less, of course, and $60k could buy you a whole lot of pool.

When investment banker Robert Lessin passed away in 2012, his seven-bedroom New Jersey home went up for sale for about $4 million – $1 million less than the asking price for the 7,000 sq ft indoor tennis court that sits on a wooded 3.3-acre lot behind the house. Selling the court and house separately was a very deliberate decision, as most people simply aren’t swayed by a luxurious court that they may only end up using a few times a year. On the other hand, though, what better time to up your tennis game than right after buying a new house with its own court?

It’s easy to get carried away with modifications and backyard renovations – and thankfully most house changes aren’t as major or large as a tennis court – but when it comes time to sell, you just might luck out and happen to find the very people that were in the market for their own backyard curling rink. You could even make it a costumed curling event and look like these guys.

Leave us a comment below if you’ve got some backyard renovation wisdom to impart!