Wine cellars are big sellers in new homes, but there are space- and price-conscious ways to bring wines to the appropriate temperature in a snazzy way. "A unique wine cooler is one of those small features that really speaks to people," says Yuma, Ariz., homeowner and landlord Molly Blake, who installed built-in wine coolers in her rental-home kitchens and her own home.
A wine cooler can also help sell or rent a home. "My renters said it was one of the top three reasons they chose our house," Blake says. "The coolers are not necessarily about wine, but more about small, inexpensive upgrades that show you are not just building or renting out a house, but a home."
Ben Argov, co-owner of International Wine Accessories in Cotati, Calif., agrees. "It shows it's a more affluent, sophisticated consumer, and it adds value to the home."
Wine coolers come in a variety of sizes. Tabletop coolers store up to 12 bottles at the proper serving temperature and cost around $100 to $150. Undercounter built-ins will run you a bit more -- from $600 to $1,900 -- but they come in 15- or 24-inch sizes and usually store 30 to 50 bottles of wine. Once the space under the counter is open, they're easy to install. All you need to do is plug in the cooler and slide it into place.