(These views are the view of the Author and not necessarily the view of Valley News) 

Spending money on your home when you are considering selling it at some point is always a calculation – will this improvement really add value to the home?  While you always want to consider what’s best for your family first, you also want to filter work done through the potential increase in property value. So which improvements really work to add value?

Sort any structural problems

Before you start looking at anything like adding new oak garages, upgrading the bathroom or building a conservatory, you want to look at the property and any structural issues that could pull the value down.  Big problems like subsidence are more than something you can casually sort out but there are lots of smaller structural issues that can devalue the house.  Examples include:

  • A leaking roof or sagging roof tiles
  • Damp problems
  • Structural cracks in the walls
  • Rotten roof timbers
  • Broken or missing roof tiles
  • Poor quality flat roof material

Always start with any of these issues before you consider the interior renovations you might want to make.  Otherwise, when you come to sell the house you will either have to handle them then or reduce the price accordingly.

Upgrade the central heating

The next big home improvement to consider is the central heating.  If you have an old fashioned heating system, this can put buyers off and stop you getting the right price for the home.  So you will want to have a plumber or heating engineer to check the system and see if there are any problems.

Also, look at the energy efficiency of the home as all homes need an EPC check before being sold – this rates them on their energy efficiency.  Look at things like drafts around the windows and doors or insulation in the loft. These will ensure that the heating system is efficient and little heat is lost.

Loft conversions

Not all lofts are suitable for conversion, but a good number are and if your loft has the headspace, there are lots of options that you can do with it.  One popular idea is to transform it into another bedroom, especially if you can add an en-suite bathroom. Other ideas include making it into a cinema room, a kid’s playroom or a home office.

When spending money converting the loft, always consider the potential increase in value.  A ballpark figure for the increase due to a converted loft is around 15% so this can help you decide how much to spend and what to do.  Even a simple conversion to an easy to use storage space can be beneficial.

Extending the house

Making the house bigger can definitely increase the value and there are lots of options to do this.  One example is to add a conservatory to the house which can extend the kitchen, add a dining room or even make a home office.  Other options include to add a brick built extension, either single or even two storeys in height.

Adding or converting a garage can also be a good way to increase the house floor space.  If you don’t have a garage, then adding a high-quality oak frame garage that can be used either for storage, for the car or even later converted into other space is a great option.

Add off-street parking

If you don’t have a drive or garage and have the space at the front or side of the house, then adding off-street parking might be a great way to add value to the house.  Not everyone will pay more for a house with a drive, but it is a good consideration, especially if you live in a busy street with lots of cars already parked on the road around you.


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