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How to Add Real Value to Your Home

by Sarah Halloran

In recent weeks we’ve looked at many easy and inexpensive ways in which you can encourage buyers for your home and increase its value. Tidying your garden, painting your front door and de-cluttering are all good ideas but what about those major jobs such as extensions, loft conversions and conservatories? A recent survey by estate agents Savills told us exactly what to do if you want to make a major difference to the market value of your home. Here are the top five findings.

  1. Loft extension

The key to most of these methods is in creating extra space. A loft which is otherwise left empty or used for storage can be perfect for an extra bedroom or a home office.

It is claimed that converting your loft space can add between 10% and 20% to the value of your home depending on the total size of your property and on the area. In London, for example, where extra space is highly desirable you could expect to receive the full 20% increase on a future sale price.

  1. Side Return

The first question to ask here might be ‘what is a side return’? In Victorian times, this was the area outside the home that led from the door at the side of a house and out into the back garden.

Some viewed it as wasted space and had the kitchen extended to make a larger kitchen area or even to add a dining room if feasible. Many older properties in the UK still have a side return and by converting it, Savills estimate that you can add around 10 to 20% to your property in financial terms.

  1. A new kitchen

In the case of a new kitchen, you aren’t actually adding any square footage to your home but you are making better use of the space inside. A transformed kitchen can be stunning and comes in at third place in the list.

However, while it may add 5 – 7% to your property value, it is claimed that the initial cost of your new kitchen is rarely, if ever, claimed back on a future sale.

  1. A new bathroom

A bathroom is arguably the one place in the house that will be redecorated in accordance with the new owner’s tastes. It is also widely claimed that the thought of upgrading such a room is likely to deter prospective buyers.

Restyling your bathroom can therefore encourage a sale and it’s also claimed that it can add up to 5% to the final figure.

  1. An en suite bathroom

This represents the ultimate in luxury and convenience and more and more buyers are adding an en suite bathroom to their list of requirements.

If you have enough space in your main bedroom then you could consider adding the extra room for your own use and when the time comes to sell, you may find that you’ve boosted your property value by up to 4%.

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