Mortgages

5 ways to add value to your home

Buying a home is the biggest investment most of us are likely to make, so you want to be sure your investment is working hard for you.

There are lots of ways to add value to your home, from minor updates to major building projects, that can also make your life more comfortable – assuming, of course, that any works you do meet building regulations.

Here are our five top picks.

1. Convert your cellar into a useable room

If you’re buying a smaller house – particularly a terrace – you might be limited on space. Luckily, many older homes come with a cellar which, if done properly, can add valuable extra space and help bump up the value of your home. Cellars can make great kitchen-diners, home offices or even occasional bedrooms, depending on what you need the most. Don’t just start using your cellar as an extra room without professional advice however; cellars are usually uninsulated and can be damp, so you will need expert structural advice to ensure the space is habitable before you start moving furniture in.

2. Turn your garage into an extra room

These days, very few people use their garage to keep a car in and if you’ve got an integral garage, it might be worth thinking about turning the space into a room instead. You may not need planning permission, but you should always check first, and any conversion will need to meet building regulations.

3. Create a larger kitchen

They say that kitchens and bathrooms sell a home, so if you’re looking to make your home as desirable as possible in future, you might want to think about extending your kitchen.

That might be knocking through to create an open plan kitchen-diner or extending your existing kitchen with a single storey extension – perfect if you have a passageway to the side of your house that isn’t needed. This often counts as 'permitted development', so doesn't need planning permission, but you should always check with your local authority.

You could also add a conservatory to give you extra entertaining space.

4. Add an extra bedroom with a loft conversion

Adding an extra bedroom not only makes a house more flexible as your family grows, it has the potential to add a large chunk of value too. Even more so if you can squeeze in an en suite bathroom at the same time.

Most lofts can be converted, though it’s always best to get a builder’s opinion and investigate planning requirements before you buy a house with a view to adding a bedroom. There are lots of ways to convert a loft, from adding roof lights to creating a dormer for extra head height, so your plans can be tailored to meet your needs and your budget.


5. Update the bathroom
Bathrooms can make or break a sale, so if yours could do with a spruce up, it’s likely to be worth investing in to increase the value and saleability of your home. You don’t have to rip everything out to make a difference – simply replacing dated suites with clean, white modern pieces can give tired bathrooms a real boost. Whatever you do, think about the kind of people who might be buying your home in future; if it’s a family home, will people want a shower and a bath for the kids, or if it’s more likely to appeal to young singles, is a modern wet room more likely to appeal?
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