According to Halifax, the UK’s largest mortgage lender, housing prices in Britain are falling. In April, prices fell by 3.1%, the bank says, marking the biggest monthly drop since 2010. However, this should not be cause for alarm as the lender also said it expects an annual price inflation of up to 3%. If you are looking to sell your home and want to ensure you are getting the best price, regardless of the state of the property market, we have put together a list of some of the top ways to increase your home’s value in 2018, from least expensive to a little more pricey. So when it comes to asking the question ‘how much is my house worth?’, you’ll still be smiling.
1. Curbside appeal
The first thing potential buyers are going to see when they pull up for their first house viewing is the exterior of your property. As we all know, first impressions count. Give your house the chance to shine by putting in some effort to make sure the outside looks perfect. That means, cleaning the windows until they sparkle, tidying up the front garden and maybe even giving the front door a new lick of paint. All fairly simple things that can make a big difference when it comes to marketing your property. A well looked after house is a valuable one. For more advice on preparing your house for viewings, read our blog.
2. Energy efficiency
An energy efficient home is worth a whole lot more than a not so energy efficient one, it seems. According to the UK government, energy saving improvements can increase a home’s value by 14% on average. Things like loft insulation, installing double glazing and even solar panels can contribute to increasing the energy efficiency of a property. Improving a house’s Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) could result in a value increase of more than £16,000. Technology comes into play again, with the availability of new smart technology energy systems such as British Gas’ Hive and the Bosch Worcester Wave, allowing you to more accurately control elements like heating and electricity from your smartphone, improving energy efficiency and increasing your home’s value.
3. Extend/convert your space
An extension or conversion will definitely add value to your home, with a conservatory or extension increasing value by 15% on average. The same goes for converting a garage or cellar into a usable living space. Loft conversions are popular too, and have been known to increase a home’s value by 20%. Extensions can be costly though, so it is important to weigh up the potential value increase alongside the cost of the build.
4. Replacement or second bathroom
According to Nationwide, an extra bathroom or ensuite can increase property value by 5% on average. It is easier than ever to add a second bathroom. Not sure you have space? What about using space under the stairs or adding an ensuite to your bedroom? It doesn’t have to be a full blown bathroom spa, just a toilet and sink will do the job and help drive up the price of your house.
5. Refitted kitchen
If your kitchen cupboards are looking a bit tired and outdated, consider having your kitchen refitted. If you have a big enough space, kitchen islands are proving very popular in modern kitchen design. A cheaper alternative is to replace your cupboard doors and handles, rather than the entire units, creating a fresher looking kitchen that will automatically boost the value of your home.
Any outside space is a major selling point for your home, so it is important not to overlook it when considering how to increase your home’s value. You have two avenues, both of which have their benefits when it comes to preparing your house for sale.
First, there is the low maintenance garden. If you speak to most people, we’d wager they would say they’d love to have a garden, an outdoor space to enjoy when the weather permits. However, many of those people would be less keen at the prospect of spending weekends weeding, pruning, mowing and sweeping. In this case, a low maintenance garden is your friend. The fewer plants, the better, and for the plants you do have, try to keep it simple. If you want to keep your lawn, make sure it is easy to mow. An easy alternative to a lawn is decking, landscaping gravel or paving stones. Remember, just because it’s low maintenance, doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful.
Secondly, you have the full scale, landscaped garden. Buyers will not fail to be wowed by a beautifully landscaped garden, envisioning themselves relaxing in the tranquil settings. Unlike the low maintenance garden, obviously this requires a lot more work, more likely with the assistance of a professional or two. But the stunning effect, and the impact on your home’s value, appeal and salability will definitely be worth it.
7. Enhance light flow
Space is always going to be an important factor when selling a house. A great way to create the illusion of more space and therefore increase the property’s value, is to introduce more natural light into the home. Think about installing a skylight to let in more light, or replacing your back doors with patio doors, giving the added bonus of a view of the garden, another factor that will affect the house’s value. By making sure the skylight or doors are double glazed, you will also be improving the energy efficiency of the home, while making it look brighter, airier and more spacious. Guaranteed to entice the buyers.
House Valuation Swindon
Ultimately, the best way to ensure you get the best price for your property is to speak to an experienced, knowledgeable agent who knows the market and can offer tailored advice and guidance on how to improve the value of your home and prepare it for sale. Getting a valuation will help you determine whether making adjustments to your property might truly benefit you in the long run. For a house valuation in Swindon, contact Castles Estate Agents on 01793 611677 or complete our free house valuation contact form. Find out more about our free, no obligation expert valuation service here.