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LAURUS LIFE | Lifestyle
You’ve decided to move home. This means a lot of house-hunting, sorting out your finances and starting to get ready for the move, but it can also mean that it’s time to start redecorating or converting your garage into a home office.
That’s right, you may have realised that your current home isn’t right for you anymore, but it’s still in your interest to do whatever you can to make it an appealing property for potential buyers. After all, the more they are willing to spend, the more you’ll have to spend on your own new home.
Here are the 14 best ways to increase the value of your home:
When it comes to finding ways to increase the value of your home, sometimes the only way is… down. If your cellar is a dusty space full of cobwebs, old bikes and broken furniture, it isn’t adding much value to your property.
Converting it into actual living space can add up to 30% in value, but it’s neither a cheap nor an easy option and definitely needs to be done by professionals. It doesn’t require planning permission, but you still need to think carefully about whether the costs and disruption are worthwhile for the increase in value.
Unlocking hidden value in your property often means making use of space that currently isn’t working hard enough. Along with cellars, lofts can have their use as storage areas but can be much more valuable as additional living spaces.
Whether you convert your loft into an extra bedroom, a yoga studio or a home office, that extra floor space won’t come cheap but can add around £40,000 to the value of your property. If you use dormer windows or rooflights to add natural light to your loft you can create delightful living or working space that will definitely appeal to buyers.
Another space that can often be underused in a property is the garage. If you’re not parking your car in there, it may currently just be used as storage space, but has the potential to be converted into a cool home office, yoga studio, cinema room or extra bedroom.
Converting your garage can require planning permission in some cases so you’ll need to check what the regulations are in your case. Of course, you also need to have plenty of off-road parking to offer potential buyers if you are planning to repurpose your garage, otherwise you risk putting people off rather than attracting them.
A conservatory is a great way of extending your home into your garden with bright and airy space to relax in. There are several factors to consider though, like whether the size of your garden can accommodate a conservatory without being dominated by it, leaving too little space to actually enjoy the outdoor spaces.
The quality of the conservatory can also be key, because while you might be tempted by cheaper options, the look and build quality of these can actually end up devaluing your home instead of raising the asking price.
Laurus homes are built for modern living, which means that we focus on open plan living areas, but most older houses weren’t designed in this way. However, you can bring that modern feel to your Victorian semi-detached house and potentially boost the value by the tens of thousands.
This can be done by knocking down an internal wall, creating a bigger communal space to bring family and friends together. Any work like this needs to be done by a professional, so please don’t start knocking through walls without checking that you won’t be damaging the structure of your whole house first.
We’ve mentioned a few ways that you can add extra living space to your home and the main appeal of doing so is to increase the number of bedrooms. When we search for new homes, this is one of the key factors we’re looking for, so turning your 3-bed home into a 4-bed one should add value.
If you don’t have a loft or garage to convert, you still have options like dividing up existing rooms – be careful not to make them too small to be appealing as bedrooms – or building an extension. Something else to consider is the recommended ratio of bedrooms to bathrooms (ideally 1 bathroom to 3 bedrooms) to avoid that queue in the morning.
Speaking of queues, en-suite bathrooms can be a value-boosting addition to your master bedroom if there’s enough space. Having this extra toilet and potentially shower can make a big difference to busy family life and people will pay more for properties that have a good number of bathrooms.
As well as having an en-suite bathroom in the master bedroom, adding a downstairs toilet can be another way of boosting the value of your home by making it more appealing to families with young children and older people who want to be sure to have an accessible toilet available.
Understairs cupboards can be converted into a downstairs toilet quite easily and affordably, potentially adding over £20,000 to the value of your home.
Having a safe and secure place to park your car(s) is a must-have for many buyers, but lots of homes don’t offer this. In areas where parking on the road isn’t easy or would mean having to carry your shopping further than necessary, a driveway is highly sought after.
According to Direct Line, having off-road parking can add 13% to the value of your home, so if you don’t have this at the moment it is worth considering whether your front garden could be converted. You’ll need to consult with the local council about planning permission and getting the kerb dropped so people can actually get their cars on your new drive.
Getting a new kitchen is a long-held dream of most homeowners at some point in their lives, but is it really worth doing this just when you’re about to try and sell your home? The simple answer is ‘yes’, because potential buyers want to see a bright, modern and clean kitchen that they could imagine cooking in, rather than a dated and grimy kitchen that they’ll need to rip out as soon as they move in.
You don’t even necessarily need to do a complete overhaul of your kitchen to improve its appearance. Repainting cupboard doors or replacing the floor tiles or worktops can have a big impact on the look and feel of a kitchen without spending too much money.
Another area that may need some work is your garden, particularly if you’re no Alan Titchmarsh. Luckily, you don’t need green fingers or to spend a huge amount of time or money to give your garden a makeover that will boost the value of your home.
At the very least you should tidy it up, removing any dead plants and weeds, cutting back any overgrown shrubs and trees and repairing any part of your lawn that are showing some wear and tear.
It can also help to give buyers an idea of how they could use the outdoor space by creating distinct areas of the garden for BBQs, play areas, storage, etc.
Redecorating a home that you’re hoping to leave may sound like a lot of work but it’s important to think of it as an investment in the home that you’re hoping to buy. At the very least, you need to give it a lick of paint to tidy up imperfections that might not affect the asking price of your home but might well put off potential buyers when they’re looking around.
These little niggles won’t take much time to fix with a spot of DIY and decorating, but you could also take it to the next level and give your whole home a more modern look with a more in-depth makeover. If you’re not sure what might appeal, why not have a look at some show home photos to get ideas of the kind of interior design that people are looking for?
Older homes have their issues but also plenty of charms too if they are used in the right way. Original features in properties that date back over a century can boost value but need highlighting and restoring so that they look as good as they did when they were first built.
Fireplaces, windows, stair banisters and timber beams are amongst the most common original features to be found in our homes, along with paneled doors, floorboards and timber beams. All of these can be uncovered, restored and turned into focus points that will appeal to buyers and boost the value of your home.
For some of the bigger projects we’ve mentioned so far we have also said that you may need to get planning permission to undertake them. You’ll also need the budget of course, which might be impossible when you’re also factoring in other costs around moving home.
However, getting the planning permission in place can be enough without actually having the work done, because buyers will at least know that the work can take place and they can avoid the paperwork and cost of submitting the application themselves. This can be around £400 but can add up to 10% extra to the value of your property.
Spending time and money doing up the home you’ve decided to leave may not sound like it makes sense at first, but you can increase the value significantly by doing so. This in turn increases the money you have in your budget for your new home. Adding an extra bedroom to your current home could help you afford an extra bedroom in your next one.
With any major reconstruction work at your home, getting professional advice and help is essential for most of us, so please make sure you do so before starting a big project that could actually lower your value if it goes wrong.
Another option is to invite estate agents to view your property and get their advice on what they feel could add the most value, as they will know what people in your area are specifically looking for.
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