With the housing market in its current state, the sensible householder's mantra should be 'don't move but improve. With this in mind, Lucy Searle came up with tips and advice to help you boost your home's value so that staying put won't just make sense financially, it will be an absolute pleasure.
When you're planning and tightening your budget, the last thing you want to do is spend unnecessary money on your home – so it's worth researching which home improvements will boost your property's value and which jobs will devalue your house. That way, every cent spent will be spent wisely.
An extension could add between 10 and 50% to the value of your home, depending on its size and how well it's finished. Here are some tips on how to add features that can add value to your home:
With the housing market in its current state, the sensible householder's mantra should be 'don't move but improve.
- So, you've plenty of bedrooms but a tiny kitchen? Add on a downstairs extension to create a larger kitchen. Got a huge garden but a small house? Put on a double storey extension to create the family home of your dreams. A loft conversion could also add up to 10% to the value of your home and, unlike a ground floor extension; it won't steal space from the garden. To be ideal, get a bedroom and extra bathroom up there, if you can.
- Planning a new kitchen is an absolute must for anyone seriously looking to boost their property’s value - it could add up to 10% to your property value. It's the first thing a potential buyer will look for in the future and it's also the room you're likely to spend much of your time in, particularly if it is a kitchen and living space all in one. You have to pick one that matches the style of your home – so choose a contemporary kitchen for a modern home, or something more traditional for a period property. Replacing your kitchen doors and old appliances with new, good quality appliances will go a long way to giving your kitchen that just-renovated feel, but at a fraction of the cost. Replacing kitchen wall tiles and replacement worktops will instantly smarten up a tatty kitchen, as will new hard flooring throughout.
- Squeezing in an en suite bathroom could add up to 5% to the value of your home, assuming you don’t sacrifice a valuable bedroom for it. Revamping your bathroom will improve and add to the appeal of your home. You don’t need to hire a plumber to do all of the work if you’re a competent DIYer (Do it Yourself). Fitting a new sink isn’t as hard as you’d think, while re-tiling the walls and floor, grouting and sealing around a basin or bath is easy, too. If you’ve got the budget, why not splash out and replan and fit a whole new bathroom? Including good bathroom lighting won’t just make it feel like a home spa but will make it seem larger, too.
- Redecorating is an easy and not necessarily expensive way to improve your home. Paint is the cheapest way – and there are lots of easy to live with, space-enhancing colour schemes to choose from. With a little practice, anyone can create their own paint effects in a colour scheme to exactly match their taste. Stencilling is really making a credit crunch comeback, too, because it can create an expensive look at a minimal cost. Or, if painting isn't your greatest skill, how about sticking? Wall stickers cost a fraction of what wallpaper would, but their impact on a room is just as great – and they’re incredibly easy to apply.
- Replacing old, worn or outdated carpets can transform a room instantly. Current carpet trends are for bold colours and patterns, but for a look you won’t tire of, go for something classic, neutral and easy to live with that’s made to last.
- Spend time and money now to sort out plumbing problems, identify and deal with damp, and restore fittings and fixtures.
- Find ways to save energy at home, and then use the money you save to spend on more eco-friendly improvements. One way is to improve the insulation in your home. You will not only cut your electricity bills – it will also make your home more eco-friendly. And if you're looking to redesign your home to be green - you can do it all by choosing to buy recycled, used or antique furniture over anything newly made. Turning a neglected plot into a glamorous garden can have a real impact on your home and how you feel about it, let alone adding to its overall value. You don’t need to spend a fortune – just a few clever ideas and regular maintenance can do the trick.
- If you have a large garden and want to add a little more indoor space without building an extension, why not consider an outdoor room? These will give you space for anything from home, office to an extra lounging area to somewhere for the children to play. Of course, you might want to spruce your garden up just by adding a new garden dining set, whether wooden, metal or funky and contemporary.