Introducing Clodagh Doyle from Placelift House Doctors. Clodagh and her team are experts in home renovations, particularly for property owners looking to improve the value of their homes prior to selling or lettings. She will be commenting on tips and ideas for improving your property, whether for yourself or to achieve a quick, successful sale or letting.
6 Ways To Add Value To Your Property
As the increase in house prices has slowed a little in 2015, many home owners looking to sell are taking a pro-active approach to improve their properties in order to create extra value prior to selling their home, or making their sale much easier.
Renovating, extending and improving your home are great ways to give it a new lease of life by gaining space or making it more aesthetically pleasing.
But will it increase your selling price?
Not all home improvements will have the optimal financial impact. Some will almost certainly increase your property’s value, but it’s a fine line to an ‘improvement’ actually hampering your sale.
What’s your budget?
Your budget should be your first question. Your home might benefit from many fantastical improvements but you’ve got to be realistic in terms of your finances… and to ensure you stay on budget to you are likely to earn it back! Setting a realistic budget and keeping to it is critical to your improvement projects.
What will suit my property?
Before we list our suggestions below, you should ask what improvements might best suit your property type, size, style, location and of course your pocket.
- You should also ensure that your plans will blend nicely with your neighbouring properties – you do not want to stand out for all the wrong reasons.
- Be mindful of that fact that if you invest in some added modern space, there is little point in having a jaw dropping new extension if the remainder of the property is looking shabby and neglected.
- Consider your time scale for your plans to ensure that when it is time to place your property on the market that all your improvements are completely finished to a high standard.
Most prospective buyers are very savvy and will in fact look for reasons not to purchase a property or indeed a reason to pay less for it. Your goal is to make your property stand out from the competition, to improve it with your target market in mind, giving prospective buyers little or no reason not to want to buy your property.
Here are some of the best ways you can add real value to your property along with some that should be avoided:
1The Property’s Condition
Is your property in tip top condition? This should be your first priority. If anything of the building’s structure is in obvious need of repair, that needs to be addressed before you spend money on anything new.This may be perhaps solving a damp issue, roof or chimney repairs, damaged fascia and soffits repairs or treating wet and dry rot.
Once you have paid sufficient attention to the repairs you should look towards improving the structure. Upgrading your insulation and ventilation are very worthwhile projects along with perhaps improving your central heating or glazing on your windows.
Glazing your windows may be costly and you might ask yourself if you will see a full return, however by not upgrading the windows may in fact put off prospective buyers.
2Creating More Space
Extending your property is one of the best and most assured ways to add to its value. It might be extra living space, a further bedroom, a bathroom or for another use. Buyers quickly recognise a property with more floor area.
However it’s important to always consider the design element to make sure the extension complements your existing space, fits in with the value, style, size, location and of course the building control and planning regulations.
Conservatories are a very popular and usually the least expensive solution to adding extra living space to your home. Aim to make this a suitable all year space as it may be lovely in the warmer months but no so enjoyable in the winter months – unless you have made provision for blinds and heating etc.
3Converting More Space
An attic conversion is probably the easiest, least disruptive and most affordable solution of achieving that extra bathroom or bedroom without radically changing the external look of your home. However, it would be important to ensure that the access to the loft is easy and that the conversion sits well with the rest of the house and that it complies with regulations.
Garages that are directly next to a property can prove to be great extensions adding a bedroom, office or playroom and will most certainly add value but only if you are not taking valuable storage space. If you convert your garage you might need to consider perhaps creating a new storage space perhaps in the garden, to allow provision of much sought after storage space.
Most properties will benefit from a long list of cosmetic improvements which can be carried out on a tight budget. Most of these can collectively add value to your property, increasing its appeal – helping it sell faster and for more. First impressions are very important when selling so it is always a good idea to take aim of your target market. Figure out who is you most likely buyer and present the property with this target market in mind.
Firstly, ensure that all superficial defects are fixed, and that all DIY projects have been finished professionally. Freshly painting and decorating with warm neutrals will make all the difference immediately making the property more inviting. Improving your floor finishes will also help. Pay attention to improving your existing kitchen and bathroom by perhaps giving them a facelift by maybe changing your worktops and cabinet doors in the kitchen or freshly re-tiling or re-grouting your bathroom floor and wall tiles.
5Improving Existing Space
Replacing your kitchen or bathroom should add real value, however make sure the price bracket of our new kitchen or bathroom matches the price bracket of your property or you won’t see your money back when selling.
Creating an extra bedroom or remodelling to create a home office or en suite, are other options to consider. By cleverly adding extra storage space whether under stairs or using ceiling voids will also add to the appeal.
6Improving Outdoor Space
Paying attention to every aspect of your property is important,including all outside areas concentrating on making this as spick and span as possible. Freshly painting the exterior of your property is a must and you should ensure your front door is looking exceptionally smart.
You should aim at setting your property apart from your neighbours giving it overall ‘kerb appeal’. Consider the possibility of creating off-street parking or improving the privacy of your property.
Preparing Your Property For Market
Prior to placing your property on the market, leave no stone unturned, ensuring that all projects are completed to perfection with no DIY half measures in sight. Take care that any planning issues are resolved, that you renew or extend the lease, buy the freehold or share of freehold if necessary and that you have paid your property tax.
It’s not personal…
Keep in mind, that the more personal your choice of project it may be less likely to have a positive effect on the resale value.
Some projects, if not given sufficient consideration can have a negative effect on your property value. Keep in mind, that the more personal your choice of project it may be less likely to have a positive effect on the resale value. For example, if you decide to convert a bedroom in to an art studio and your target market is a young family looking for an extra bedroom for their new baby these types of buyers will not pay the premium it cost to build your studio, in fact they may be turned off.
Paint it beige…
Painting and decorating your home prior to selling will make it more appealing and contribute to the overall value but only if you choose colours and finishes that appeal to the wider market. In other words, your may choose dark floral wallpaper for your bedroom but will this appeal to the wider market?
By placing the highest quality fixtures, fittings or perhaps a high end luxurious kitchen upgrade in an otherwise modest property often do not have the same return of mid-range ones.
Everything in its place…
Rooms that don’t fit or flow with the floor plan will most certainly have a negative effect on your value. For example if you decide to add more space by adding a play room in your patio space but your dining room now looks out into a clutter of toys – this will not add to buyer appeal.
Don’t overdo it…
You may decide to invest in landscaping your back garden and even consider adding a great feature like a large rockery with a pond. As a result your back garden may look fantastic but when it comes to selling it could hinder the sale. It may be seen as a safety hazard by parent with small children and put them off.
So to add value, there is no doubt you should invest time researching and carefully planning and considering well-judged improvements that will best suit your property while also being mindful of your target market and budget. With this approach, you should be well on your way to adding value to your home and hopefully get the return on investment you are wishing for – best of luck!
If you are thinking about renovating your home or you are looking to move and want to maximise your property’s value, talk to Clodagh and her team at Placelift on 01 254 8070.