Not all home improvement projects add value, so it's worth thinking about the following if you are considering embarking on a renovation project. Check out Zoopla's top tips below!
1. Don’t overdevelop
The main thing to bear in mind when trying to add value is to avoid overdeveloping. All properties have a ceiling price and, no matter what you do to it, your property can’t command an asking price that’s too much higher than other properties on your street.
2. Keep proportionate
If you have a small two-bedroom house, excavating a mega-basement will make the property bottom-heavy, so remember that any additions should remain in proportion to the original structure.
Look at the other houses on your street to understand what projects your neighbours have been granted planning permission to carry out. You’ll then realise what’s likely to be possible with your property.
3. Add more rooms
In many cases, it’s more cost-effective to turn a two-bedroom house into a three-bedroom house than it is to invest in a new property with an additional bedroom.
There are two options if you want to create more rooms:
• Reconfigure the floor plan (the cheapest option)
• Add more living space with an extension or conversion
Reconfiguring: Reconfiguring the existing upstairs floor plan could be a cost-effective way of creating more bedrooms.
A good builder will be able to re-design the floor plan to make the most of the space available.
Providing the rooms created are of adequate size and the space in the original ones hasn’t been overly compromised, a well thought-through reconfiguration can add value to your property.
Conversions: Converting loft space is also a relatively cheap way to increase the number of bedrooms, as well as the living space in your home.
In many cases a loft conversion is considered permitted development so you won’t require planning permission.
However, listed properties or those in conservation areas will require permission and local interpretation of the regulations can vary, so it’s worth clarifying with your local planning authority before you commence work.
You’ll need a minimum ceiling height of 2.3 metres to make a loft conversion viable. Typically the steeper the pitch of the roof the better suited it is to converting.
You should consult a builder about the configuration, especially if you plan to include bathrooms as locating these close to existing plumbing will reduce the cost of the project.
Extensions: Any project that adds square footage is likely to add value and the trend for open-plan living has increased the popularity of single-storey kitchen extensions.
A basic single-storey extension will most likely fall under permitted development, so planning permission isn’t required.
If you also want to increase the number of bedrooms you could opt for a double-storey extension.
While reconfigurations may solve the financial problem and hassle of moving up the ladder to increase the amount of bedrooms, if room size is compromised this type of project can’t guarantee increasing the sale price.
On the other hand, adding living space with a well thought out conversion or extension nearly always adds value to a property. Before embarking on any project with a large financial outlay, it is wise to first seek legal and/or financial advice from a qualified professional.
Article by the team at Zoopla