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How to add value to your home

BY David Philips

27th Feb 2023 Property

How to add value to your home
It can be surprisingly hard to know what actually adds value to your home. Property expert David Philips separates fact from fiction
We all think that we have a fair idea of the things that are likely to add value to our homes but, in a lot of cases, these ideas are way off the mark. In this article, we’re sorting fact from fiction when it comes to the things that really can add cash to your selling price.

The myths 

We often have somewhat outdated ideas about the things that can drive up our selling price. Here are some of the myths you may have come across. 
Kitchens and bathrooms 
A lot of people are under the impression that they should install a new kitchen and/or bathroom suite in order to get the best price for their house. While it is true that potential buyers pay close attention to these rooms, they’re largely looking to make sure that they are in a good state of repair and have the type of size and storage space that they need.
"Most home buyers don’t expect that the kitchen and bathroom will be to their taste"
In reality, most home buyers don’t expect that the kitchen and bathroom will be to their taste and so, many will budget for the fact that they will, in all likelihood, tear out the existing units and start again. This means that, not only have you shelled out on a new kitchen, leaving yourself out of pocket, but you won’t actually gain anything.
En suites
For many homebuyers, an en suite bathroom is on the "nice to have" list but in most cases is not a deal breaker—and won’t necessarily add value to your home. Properties in the UK are, as a rule, a fair bit smaller than in other countries and many people would prioritise a larger bedroom over an extra bathroom.
Ensuite bathroom - How to add value to your home
An en suite bathroom is rarely a deal breaker for prospective buyers
This is backed up by the fact that, according to a 2018 English housing survey, only 27 per cent of homes have more than one bathroom.  
Neutral walls and ceilings
Although it's true that walls and ceilings painted in a neutral colour provide a blank canvas which allows a viewer to picture their own decor more clearly, this is very unlikely to actually add any value to the property in terms of cold, hard cash.  
Light colours and mirrors
We’ve all read blogs telling us that the use of light colours and mirrors can add the illusion of space to a room.
"Unless you’re able to actually add more physical space to your property, this one is a red herring"
We’ll let you into a secret—your viewers and potential viewers have already been furnished with the dimensions of each of the rooms in your home and are likely to work off this information rather than falling for an illusion. Unless you’re able to actually add more physical space to your property, this one is a red herring.

What actually adds value to your home 

There are a few things that will almost certainly add real value to your home. 
Windows 
Tired, tatty or single-glazed windows can not only look unappealing but are also energy inefficient, leading to a lower energy rating and higher bills. Replacing old windows with more efficient UPVC ones can absolutely allow you to add to your asking price.
Parking
Car theft is a persistent problem in the UK, and a worry for many homeowners. Although it’s not always possible, if you are able to add a private driveway or even a secure garage to your property, this may be your ticket to a higher price when it comes to selling up.
Eco features
In 2023, more and more people are actively looking for home which already have eco features in place and, these can include:  
Having eco features in place in your home can be seen as "future proofing" your property and will almost certainly make it more attractive to a good many potential buyers. The good news is that, depending on where you live, you may be able to get financial help toward making your home more green from your local council.  
Deal or no deal
While some items on our "myth list" may not actually add cash value to your home, they may, however, be helpful in clinching a sale and so should not be dismissed out of hand.
"If your main focus is to raise the price the tips in our facts section may help you"
If, however, your main focus is to raise the price, the tips in our facts section may help you when it comes time to sell.
David Philips is a property expert at PropertyRescue 
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