From simple DIY jobs to large-scale renovations, there are hundreds of things you can do to make your home more appealing to buyers. We put together a list of our top tips on how to maximise the potential of your home, adding value to your property in the process.
Redecorating is one of the easiest and cheapest ways to add value to your home. A lick of paint can go a long way. Fresh paint gives the impression that your home has been well cared for and is therefore worthy of a higher sale price.
When choosing colours to redecorate with, try and keep buyers in mind. By choosing neutral shades buyers are able to more easily envision living in the house, imagining what their furniture may look like and how they would use the space. While neutral colours may not be to your taste, rooms decorated uniquely to your style can be overwhelming to buyers and affect their ability to imagine their own lives in your home. This is something to consider if you are thinking of selling.
2. Do those small DIY jobs you’ve been meaning to do forever
Just like redecorating, fixing any small issues or superficial defects shows that your home has been well cared for. Think yellowing door frames, dripping taps, squeaky floorboards, mould, broken light fittings etc. Light is often key in selling a home so ensuring light fittings are in working order is essential. Any mould should also be addressed immediately as this can be off-putting for buyers and can signify the presence of damp.
Most DIY jobs are relatively cheap and easy to fix but when it comes to adding value to your home, they can have a significant impact. After all, some buyers don’t want to do anything to a house, they just want to move in. By ensuring all the DIY jobs have already been attended to, you can make your property much more appealing to this kind of buyer.
3. Make sure your house has kerb appeal
As much as people say they’re going to keep an open mind and look for the potential in a house when buying, first impressions count. This is also true for those valuing your home. First impressions can have a subconscious effect on our thought processes. People will tend to look more favourably at houses with a beautiful outside, as when they enter the house, they are more likely to already have a positive mindset. This is known as kerb appeal.
To improve your house’s kerb appeal, a freshly painted front door can do wonders. You should also ensure that your front garden is well kept. If you already have a drive ensure it is clean. If you do not have a drive it may be beneficial to create one. Having off-street parking is a key selling point for many buyers and is a great way to add value to your home.
4. Make sure your garden is functional and beautiful
The back garden is often overlooked when people are thinking about how to add value to their home but, a functional and beautiful garden can seal the deal for some buyers. Try to think about what buyers in your area might want. For example, if you live in an area that is popular with young families, ensure your garden design is appropriate for children.
Your garden can become an extra space for entertaining if designed well. This can give the impression of a larger property. Adding decking can also help to provide entertaining space within a garden, rather than just a patch of grass. You should also make sure that the grass and any borders or plants are neatly trimmed. This gives the impression that your property has been well looked after and is an easy way to add value to your home.
5. Modernise your bathroom
Modernising your bathroom can help to add value to your home, making it look fresh and hygienic. Updating your bathroom can be an expensive project, so make sure to manage your investment to ensure you’re not left out of pocket. If your bathroom is currently downstairs, consider moving it upstairs but, be wary of losing a bedroom.
If you don’t want to commit to a full bathroom remodel, or if your bathroom fittings are already relatively modern, you could try re-grouting, painting the walls and fitting new taps. This can help to make your bathroom look like new again. If you have a shower curtain, you should consider replacing this with a glass screen as they are viewed as more hygienic.
6. Modernise your kitchen
The kitchen is the hub of a home. A space for preparing food, as well as entertaining, people spend a lot of time in their kitchens. This is often a key selling point for buyers. By modernising your kitchen, you can help to increase your property’s value. Again, this can be a big investment but it can pay dividends if managed properly.
If you cannot afford a full kitchen remodel, you can revamp your kitchen by fitting or painting new cabinet doors, replacing handles and light fittings, and creating a clutter-free environment to give the illusion of space. In doing this, you may be able to demand a higher price for your home as buyers will not have to shell out for a new kitchen after moving in.
7. Open up living spaces
Open plan living is extremely popular at the minute. Opening up your kitchen and dining space to create one big room can add significant value to your home. Many people still like to keep a separate lounge, however, for cosy nights in.
A large kitchen and dining area is perfect for entertaining. It also helps those who spend a lot of time in the kitchen to feel connected to the rest of the home. They can cook whilst watching their children play or talking to someone in the dining area, for a more fluid and sociable living environment.
8. Install double glazing
Whilst all modern houses are built with double glazing as standard, some older houses may still have single glazed windows. Single glazing is not very effective at keeping heat in a property therefore the house may be draughty and cold. Single glazing also presents a security risk as they are much easier to break than double glazed windows.
Upgrading all of your windows to double glazing can improve both the heat efficiency and the security of your home. Double glazing also helps to keep outdoor noise out, something which can significantly impact on property value.
9. Add bi-fold doors
Bi-fold doors can add an instant wow factor to any room. Letting in masses of light, bi-fold doors can help to create the illusion of more space. In addition to this, in the warmer summer months, opening the doors can help to create a new outdoor space for entertaining. Whereas in the winter months, the bi-fold doors help to connect the inside and the outside.
They are a modern addition to any home and are extremely popular at the moment. The illusion of more space, good lighting and modern feel all work together to add value to your home.
10. Install a heat pump
As people become more conscious of their environmental impact, environmentally-friendly houses are becoming more popular. It is thought that by 2025, new build houses will no longer be heated using fossil fuel boilers. They will use heat pumps. Heat pumps are a renewable source of energy that work by extracting heat from the air, or ground, and transferring this to your home. Find out more about the benefits of heat pumps.
By installing a heat pump now, you can help to futureproof your home, making it more green which in turn helps to increase its value. It is important to note that heat pumps do cost more upfront to install than a boiler. Grants such as the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme are available to help you recover the install costs, but as this pays back over 7 years, it’s best to install a heat pump if you’re not in a rush to sell.
11. Install underfloor heating
Not only is underfloor heating an efficient and affordable way to heat your home, but it also has many benefits when it comes to adding value to your home. Underfloor heating is an effective way to heat the entirety of rooms, without the need for radiators which can sometimes leave cold spots or take a long time to heat an entire room. Without the need for radiators, you are also left with more wall space, resulting in rooms that feel larger.
In addition to this, warmth underfoot can help to create an air of luxury. It feels good. All of these things work to increase the value of your home. Find out more about how UFH can add value to your home.
12. Install solar thermal panels
Solar thermal panels generate your home’s hot water using a renewable energy source; the sun. Installing solar thermal can help to produce up to 60% of your hot water during winter and up to 100% in the summer!. This can result in significant cost savings for a relatively low-cost investment. Solar thermal panels are also eligible for the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.
A home with an environmentally-friendly element can be attractive to buyers and therefore can add value to your home. You may need to wait a few years after installing to see a return on your investment, but when you come to sell you will reap the benefits.
13. Make your home smart
Smart home technology is becoming a key selling point for many buyers. Features such as the ability to control heating from your mobile can help to add value to your home. Not only are smart features attractive to buyers but they could help to improve your Energy Performance Certificate which adds value to your property.
Moreover, by adding smart features now, you are helping to future-proof your property for new buyers. Most homes do not currently have features such as this so being ahead of the curve could help you to capitalise on this.
14. Build an extension
Whilst this may seem like a huge project, it is one of the best ways to add value to your home. Kitchen extensions are one of the most common extension types and can help to create that open plan living feel. Space is one of the key factors that affects house prices, creating more is almost guaranteed to add value to your home. For a luxurious feel why not install UFH? It can be installed in single rooms and is especially easy to install in extensions and renovations.
If you cannot afford to build an extension before selling your home, it may be worth gaining planning permission for an extension anyway. Whilst this still costs money, it is a lot cheaper and helps to put buyers minds at ease knowing they have permission to extend the property already, should they choose to buy.
15. Convert loft or basement space
In the same way that an extension can add value by creating more space, converting a disused space such as a loft or basement into a usable room can increase the value of your property. The number of bedrooms a property has strongly correlates to the price.
Loft conversions are a great way to add an extra bedroom to your property. You could also convert your cellar or basement into an extra bedroom or entertaining space.
16. Address any structural issues
Structural issues are a big red flag for many buyers. A house with damp, a leaky roof, structural cracks in the wall or rotten joists etc. will have a lower property value than those that are structurally sound. This is because any buyer will need to carry out work in order to address these issues.
By ensuring any structural damage has been repaired before selling your home will allow you to fetch a higher sale price in the long run. Structural issues can be expensive to repair so a structurally sound property is often non-negotiable for many buyers.
17. Update the electrics
If you live in an old house, the electrics may be somewhat out of date. You should consider rewiring the house to meet modern safety standards for electrics in order to gain a higher sale price.
You may also want to add more sockets. Technology plays a huge role in modern life, a lack of sockets in a house can disrupt this. Try adding modern facings and switches to give your house a put-together feel that will be attractive to buyers.
18. Build a garden office
The modern working environment is more flexible than ever. More and more people are choosing to, or are required to, work from home. A dedicated space in order to do this could add value to your home. Whilst a home office inside the house is appealing, a separate garden office is likely to add more value. This is because not only does a garden office add more space to your property, but it also allows people to separate work and home life, creating an attractive area in which they can escape in order to focus on work.
A garden office also does not have to remain an office. Buyers are able to repurpose the space any way they see fit, perhaps into a playroom or even a bar. This flexibility improves the potential of your home therefore increasing its value.
19. Restore and highlight period features
It is no secret that period properties tend to receive a higher sale price. Not only are period features hard to come by, but they are unique. If you are lucky enough to live in a house with original period features, restoring and highlighting these could add value to your property.
For example, fireplaces are a popular feature, as is decorative coving, original floors, sash windows and more. You should always consult professionals when restoring period features as if not done properly, you can actually devalue your property.
20. Create a downstairs toilet
A downstairs toilet is super handy. It is ideal for guests when entertaining, allows more than one person to use the facilities at one time and stops you from having to walk upstairs every time you need to use the toilet.
Creating this convenience can help to appeal to buyers, especially those who like to entertain a lot. The addition of an extra usable room is also likely to add monetary value to your home.
So there you have it, our 20 top tips on how you can add value to your home. It is important to take into consideration the cost of improvements in relation to the likely benefit before carrying out any work. If you are not looking to sell your property any time soon, larger-scale renovations may make more sense as this gives you more time not only to enjoy them but to see a return on your investment. For those looking to sell soon, it may be more beneficial to look at the improvements that require a smaller level of investment, such as redecoration and DIY fixes.
If you are unsure on the best ways to add value to your home, it may be worth speaking to an estate agent in your area. They will have experience in what kind of properties sell well and for what price, as well as what buyers tend to look for in a property.