Blog – Home improvements to add value to your home

Evidence suggests that many more of us are putting down roots and choosing to stay in our current homes for longer.

The average time a homeowner in the UK stays in their property is 21 years.

This contrasts with the 1980’s, when a fast-rising property market encouraged a move every eight years on average.

However, high prices in some regions, Stamp Duty and the other costs of moving, are now encouraging us to stay put and spend money improving our properties.

With so many more people staying put and embarking on some home improvements, it’s a good idea to select improvements and renovations that will add value to your property in case you do decide to move on one day.

Some of the best home improvements to add value to your property include (plus potential value added):

  • Converting your cellar — 30%
  • Converting your garage to living space — 15%
  • Extending the kitchen — 15%
  • Loft conversion to add a bedroom — 15%
  • Increase living space with a conservatory or similar — 10%
  • Kerb and garden appeal — up to 10%
  • Fitting a new bathroom — 5%
  • Making the living area open plan — 3-5%

Below are some useful tips to bear in mind before embarking on your chosen project:

Check your deeds

There could be restrictions on what you can do. You may require planning permission, especially if your home improvements affects a boundary or external modifications are involved.

Check your policy

If you’re going to make any major changes to your home, you should contact your buildings and contents insurance provider first. This is to avoid unintentionally invalidating your policy and to check your policy covers you for accidental damage.

Get your paperwork in order

If you are looking at a large undertaking such as converting your loft, ensure you have the correct paperwork and certification. Otherwise the money you spend may not be realised in the sale price.

Preserve bedroom space

Try not to reduce your bedroom count. You may want to convert a third bedroom into an en-suite, but by losing a bedroom you will reduce the value of your property.

Be commercially-minded

Consider the neighbourhood you live in and the types of buyers likely to want to live there, for example spending money landscaping your garden may not appeal to a younger professional couple who want low-maintenance outside space.

Avoid personalisation

Unless you are prepared to redecorate when you come to sell, use a neutral colour scheme. Introduce colours in soft furnishings and accessorises and personalisation with pictures or photos.

Hire a professional

Avoid a DIY disaster by only taking on projects you are confident you can complete.

I can help

Please get in touch if you are looking to fund your home improvements with a remortgage or second charge loan.