Wed 24 May 2017
Adding value to your home
They say an Englishman’s home is his castle and this is certainly true. But to make sure you get the most out of your home starts in probably the unsexiest of places.
Is your property structurally sound?
There is absolutely no point in remodelling and fitting out your ‘supa doopa’ new kitchen and bathroom if the property you live in has structural problems or building defects. Contrary to popular belief professional valuers should take into account any issues relating to the property you propose to sell and any major structural problems will not be hidden by cosmetic ‘sticking plasters’.
Examples of defects would include leaking roofs, rising damp, structural cracks to walls, bowing walls, rotten joists or roof timbers and insect infestations. If you suspect that your property suffers from any of these issues then it is essential to consult a builder, surveyor or structural engineer.
Repairing any or all of these defects may well seem unnecessary if you are selling the property but you can guarantee it will get picked up at the survey and will avoid protracted negotiations and ultimately secure you a better price. (If your property has all of these problems or just a few, take into account an Auction Sa
Upgrading essential services such as plumbing and wiring does not have to be a disruptive job and it would be sensible to take professional advice from plumbers and electricians with a view to ensuring that the utilities you have in place are in the best shape possible. It may well be that you decide not to upgrade these services but take into account that it may well form part of the negotiating process once you have secured a buyer.
Repair superficial defects
Those small areas of plaster cracking that you have or worn out paint or the mouldy ceilings in your kitchen and bathroom may not seem like a lot but if there is a culmination of many small defects then this will affect a potential purchaser’s attitude towards the property and any subsequent offer that they may well make. Repairing damaged windows, touching up peeling paint or replacing the sealant in the bathroom will generally help the appearance and saleability of your property and encourage potential purchasers that the property has been well maintained and although relatively easily undertaken by a competent DIYer would not encourage the majority of purchasers that the house would be an easy purchase to undertake.
Cash in the attic?
There is a possibility that you have a loft that would suitable for conversion? In terms of potentially adding value to your property, it may well be that the roof space within your property is an untapped asset. Remember that this must be undertaken professionally and with full approval and Building Regulations in order to constitute a proper room and it is sensible to seek advice from professionals before undertaking such a significant investment and we cannot stress enough the importance of receiving Building Regulation approval for such works in order to constitute a habitable room.
The kitchen is the heart of the home
Many existing kitchens can be easily improved with modest investment and a contemporary and attractive looking kitchen is essential to both buyers and their building society surveyors. Before you undertake such a task it is sensible to consider a number of permutations from whether or not the current units are salvageable and the introduction of new quality worktops may be sufficient or whether or not an entire remodel or redesign may be beneficial. Open plan living kitchens are extremely fashionable at the moment but that doesn’t mean to say that just knocking a wall down is the right thing to do. Check with property professionals who will be happy to advise you and beware of the structural walls.
Make a splash in the bathroom
Bathrooms want to look fresh and clean. Ensure that there is adequate light and consider replacing single pendants with spotlighting. Pay attention to the details around the tiling and bathroom fixtures and fittings. Most buyers insist on at least one shower within a property and the bathroom is a wonderful place to make a real wow with prospective buyers without investing a ridiculous amount of money in the upgrading of the suite and associated fittings.
Green with envy
Making the most use of your outside space to enjoy the infrequent summer sunshine is essential. Well, planned decking or patio areas for entertaining gives potential buyers an idea of the summer evenings that they may be able to enjoy in the future. Family houses benefit from a well-cut and maintained lawn area and storage always comes in handy for the paraphernalia required to maintain such a garden. Even if you just stick to the basics and clean-up, weed, trim back unruly bushes and feed the lawn it can certainly help the overall impression of the garden and splashes of colour in the flower beds will not go unnoticed.
Enjoy outside inside
Have you thought about adding a conservatory? A well designed and planned garden room, conservatory or orangery can enhance the value and saleability of your property significantly. In some instances, conservatories do not require planning permission within the permissible development, although must comply with Building Regulations. Speak to local providers and consider the impact as to whether or not you are taking away essential areas of garden but it must feel as though the conservatory is an extension of the home and not just an add-on
Park it, off-street parking
Getting your car off the road can make a big difference to some purchasers and particularly in suburban and urban locations. For example, some properties have a front garden which may potentially offer the opportunity of creating off-road parking and subject to necessary consents may add a big difference to the value of your property or at the very least its saleability. For many purchasers, a well-implemented driveway is more valuable than a front garden that is very rarely used.
Stand out from the crowd and improve your kerb appeal
Most buyers have a good idea how they feel about a property from the get-go and first impressions do matter. Tidying up or repointing brickwork, repainting doors and windows or replacing an old garage door can make a huge difference to how your property is perceived. Remember you never get a second chance to make a first impression.
"Dear Gail, I would like to thank you and the team for all the excellent care and consideration you have shown over not the easiest of sales. I always felt that you had my best interests at heart. All I can say is - brilliant! "