The United Kingdom is a nation of home improvers but which projects add value to your home and provide you with the most bang for your buck?
As regular visitors to our website will know, we have already published dozens of helpful price guides covering the most popular home improvement projects. In this article, we will explore the top seven ways you can increase the value of your home, as an added bonus, you will also see a guide price for each project.
1) Convert Your Loft
There can be little doubt about the financial benefits of converting your loft into a habitable living space. For maximum return on your investment, include an en-suite if possible.
Many lofts can now be converted under “permitted planning” regulations, so you might be able to bypass the arduous and costly planning permission process.
This type of extension is also the least disruptive as most of the work is done from the outside. Compare this to a side extension which will involve taking down walls and considerable remodelling of the existing living space.
Cost: £27000-£50000 depending on size, with or without ensuite and quality of finish
Time to complete: 8-12 weeks
Increase in house value: 15% according to a survey of 105 estate agents and up to 20% according to a survey by Nationwide in 2016.
2) Fit Double Glazing
Double glazing isn’t nearly as expensive as it was only a couple of decades ago. It’s affordable and you are almost certain to get your money back when it comes to selling your house.
If you currently have single glazed windows then you will be making a saving on your winter heating bills too.
It should be noted that installing cheap windows to save money could actually hurt your wallet in the long term.
Houses with Rosewood or Mahogany coloured window frames rarely look as attractive when they’re replaced with cheap white window frames.
Cost: £4000-£5000 for a semi-detached house
Time to complete: 2-3 days
Increase in house value: 5-10%
3) Convert the Garage
Over 90% of people who have a garage don’t store their car in it and this valuable space is often used as a junk room.
If you have a garage built-in to the house, spend £300 on a garden shed to store your equipment and put your junk in the loft.
To calculate how much extra value this will add, just work out the square metres of your entire house and it’s current value, this will give you a price per square metre. Now measure up your garage and see how much extra value you’ll add to your home.
If you have a detached garage with a pitched roof then you can add even more value by converting the upstairs into a separate annexe.
Cost: £11000+ to convert an internal garage, this is much cheaper than a house extension.
Time to complete: 2-3 weeks
Increase in value: depends on current house price and value per sq metre
4) Lower the Kerb and Pave Over the Front Garden
This won’t add much to the value of a house located in the countryside, but if you live in a city centre or anywhere parking is an issue then that extra parking space could potentially add tens of thousands of pounds to the value of the property.
You’ll need to get planning permission to drop the kerb and some driveways will also need permission, although most can be completed under “permitted planning” regulations.
5) Install a Conservatory
Many conservatories fail to add value to the property due to a lack of planning and penny-pinching.
Cheap plastic polycarbonate roofs and small conservatories are usually the culprits.
A conservatory should only be installed after careful planning and consideration. It should add practical living space and not be just a junk room.
One should also think about central heating to keep it warm during the winter and air-conditioning to keep it cool in the summer.
The design of the conservatory should be in keeping with the property, glass roofs are considered more premium than polycarbonate.
For added value, add a bifolding door between the conservatory and the house. See bifold door prices here.
Conservatory Cost: typically between £10000-£20000 (see our conservatory price list here)
Time to complete: about a week.
Increase in house value: between 4 and 7 percent.
6) Forget the Bedrooms and Instead Improve the Kitchen and Bathroom
Improving an old kitchen and modernising it to current standards is a great way to increase both the value of the home and it’s sellability.
There is evidence however that an expensive premium kitchen provides no extra value above a standard new kitchen. A £50,000 kitchen in a £200,000 house will not give you a profitable return on your investment.
The next best room to spend your money on is the bathroom.
7) Broadband and Internet
The internet has become part of our lives and for most of us, a slow connection isn’t just an annoyance, it’s a deal-breaker.
Many homeowners now watch television via the internet and children often play games that require a fast connection. Also, many self-employed people rely on a good connection at home.
If you live in an area with slow speeds, upgrading your connection could make your property more desirable than your neighbours.
Our reliance on the internet is only going to increase in the years to come, so invest now and future proof your home.
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This page contains seven surefire ways to increase house value. You can discover dozens of other cost guides by exploring our price list: