24 Oct Easy Ways to Add Value to Your Home
Put Any Structural Right Before You Start Anything Else
Structural problems will really lower the value of your house; it also makes no sense to carry out any cosmetic improvements or internal works such as kitchen/bathroom fitting or decorating until any structural issues have been addressed.
Examples of structural defects include:
- a sagging or leaking roof
- missing or broken roof tiles
- structural cracks to walls
- bowing walls
- rotten joists or roof timbers
- insect infestation
- an unstable chimney stack
- a collapsed floor/slab
For any structural concerns we would be happy to look and advise on the cost and best practices on overcoming these problems.
Update Old Wiring and Pipework
Another task to consider before any ‘cosmetic’ work would be address an old wiring and pipework. You should check to see what fuse box the is running on, it should be a modern consumer unit with and RCD (Residual Circuit Device) for safety. Updating the wiring may be essential if it has not been rewired for some years; this is an ideal time to add additional plug sockets.
Old pipework can gradually get furred up, leading to poor hot and cold flow, knocking and rattling sounds & eventually burst pipes. A good solution would be to consider a pressurized plumbing system which would ensure good pressure on both hot and cold supplies.
Updating Old Heating Systems
A simple solution of updating the existing central heating system can add more value to the property than it costs. If your existing boiler is in reasonable working order and has adequate output for the heat requirements of the building, then it makes practical sense to try and make use of it. However, many properties still have old fashioned heating systems and can be improved. This should also be done alongside improving the general energy efficiency of the building.
This will include:
- sealing any drafts around doors and windows
- replacing windows beyond repair with double glazing.
- adding insulation to areas like loft spaces
- adding new radiators, heated towel rail or underfloor heating if you your boiler has enough capacity.
Adding a loft conversion can be one of the best ways to adding value to your house and can be easily achieved as it uses existing volume; therefore, wouldn’t normally require planning permission unless adding dormer windows.
Improving the existing layout is equally as effective in adding value. For maximum effects, look to improve the main living spaces such as the kitchen, dining and living room areas. Combining the kitchen and living room areas to create open plan multi functioning living spaces will have the most effect and can create a larger feel to any home. In order to undertake any structural openings, it is important to be aware of all the requirements to achieve this. We can talk you through the process and requirements for involving structural engineers and builder surveyors as necessary.
Adding a Bedroom
The number of bedrooms a property has provides a big impact on the price of the property. Extra bedrooms can be created by dividing up existing space by removing and adding walls, by converting the loft or cellar, or by extending. Re-using existing space is most cost effective but only likely to be an option in old period houses with vast bedrooms.
Adding a Bathroom
This is often a good investment, especially if it creates an en-suite to the master bedroom. Extra bathrooms can be added by remodelling existing space, or by extending. Ideally there should be WC facilities on every floor that has bedrooms, so if you are converting the attic, try to include at least a WC, if not a full bathroom. In a traditional two-storey Victorian or Edwardian terraced house, moving the downstairs bathroom upstairs can add value.
Potentially one of the cheapest ways to add value, getting the most out of a modest investment. Small changes such as repainting or replacing unit doors or just the worktops can have a huge impact, as can new floor tiles or better lighting. An attractive, clean and sociable kitchen is essential both to buyers and valuation surveyors.
Basic tips to add value affordably update.
- Ensure at least one bathroom has a shower, this is considered an essential these days to most buyers.
- Replace existing sanitary ware. No body wants to see a stained, damaged or unfashionable bathroom suite. A clean white bathroom suite has a much broader range of appeal and can be achieved simply for as little as £300.
- Make sure the same is applied to the floor; it needs to be clean and hygienic. The many vinyl and floor tile variants are the best way to achieve this.
- Why not consider under floor heating while you are addressing the flooring. It is a sort after feature and considered a nice touch from a buyer’s perspective.
- Make sure the bathroom has an extractor fan and that it is functioning properly.
- Additional mirrors are a great way to make a space appear larger and brighter.
- The add on a towel rail is a practical way make use of a radiator in confined spaces.
Probably one of the most common tasks. Small superficial defects may not devalue your house but may put off potential buyers if you are looking at selling. Basic decorating tasks can be done without the help of a professional and won’t take much time to achieve. These include:
- peeling paint
- squeaking or sticking doors and windows
- door latches that don’t work
- mouldy sealants in kitchen and bathroom
- dripping taps
- sewer smells
- broken or damaged windows
- squeaky floors and stairs
- cracks to ceilings and plasterwork
- lifting flooring
A tidy attractive garden can make all the difference adding value; consider the basic like clearing up any litter, weeding, repair and cut lawn, cut back overgrown trees and shrubs. A well designed garden can be a big attraction to buyers. The little extras that go a long way:
- Privacy is vital and improving the feeling of seclusion will add value
- Consider adding fences and even mature trees
- You can raise boundary fences and walls up to 2m without needing planning permission (0.6m on the highway)
- Structures within the garden, such as pergolas, can be up to 4m without needing planning even if they are right up to the boundary
- Much like an open plan living space create distinct areas for each function, seating, eating/barbecue, storage, lawn, work area.
- Decking will extend perception of the amount of useable living space somewhere between the house and garden.
First impressions are a crucial element if you are trying to sell your home. Most buyers will decide if they do or do not like a property before they even get out of the car and it can be hard to shake off negative first impressions created by a poor or unattractive exterior. A well designed low maintenance drive with one or more parking spaces can add significant value even if it means sacrificing some of the front garden.
Make sure you have the below also squared away to ensure that no first impressions are wasted.
- repointing brickwork
- repainting doors and windows
- replacing an old garage door
- changing/repairing windows
- repainting walls
- repairing cracked or broken cladding such as render or timber
- adding a porch
- replacing/adding a house sign or number
- securing planning permission of a dropped curb if the property does not have one.
A single storey extension or construction of a conservatory usually adds more value than it costs providing it is integrated into the house and of course well done. Here at The Wood Workers we specialise in home extensions, efficiently and quickly, whilst not sacrificing quality. It may not require planning permission but will involve building regulations. If you have any question about what you require, costs involved, then speak to the experts and get in touch today