Content supplied by HSBC
If you are thinking of moving up the property ladder, don’t forget that your existing home could have a lot of unleashed potential. With the cost of selling up and moving home being so high, you should always look at the ways you can improve your own home first. What’s more, you could borrow as much as £25,000 in the form of a home improvement loan from HSBC, so there is no reason to put off your plans for a makeover. Remember, credit is subject to status.
From cosmetic fixes to extensions and remodels, we look at the best ways to maximise what you invest in your home, not only making it better to live in, but also more saleable in the future.
1. Complete basic repair jobs
Always allocate the first chunk of your budget to making sure your home is well-maintained. This means fixing any niggles such as sticking doors, cracked walls, peeling paintwork, leaky taps and wood rot. You will also want to solve problems such as damp or any structural issues including roof damage. These things should be high priority to prevent any further impact on your home – there is no point making cosmetic improvements to a property that is falling apart!
While repair work will not necessarily add to your home’s value (unless you bought it in a very bad state), it will ensure your home is resaleable and worth the local asking price.
Cost: From a few pounds for fixing doors and taps on a DIY basis, to £125–£200 a day to hire a decorator to paint your home’s exterior. Structural issues will vary depending on the level of work involved. Fixing a cracked wall, replacing a few bricks and repointing will cost £300–£500. The worst cases of subsidence may cost up to £15,000 to repair.
2. Give your home’s interior a makeover
Updating your interiors is one of the most affordable ways to add value and it can cost as little or as much as you are willing to budget. If you are happy to roll up your sleeves, redecorating the average bedroom will only set you back the cost of a few tins of paint, maybe some new curtains and new flooring if you need it.
Be smart and DIY where you can, upcycling second hand furniture to get a unique look on a budget. Turn to Instagram for inspiration – there are some great accounts where people are making their homes look amazing on a shoestring budget.
Cost: Painting a room can cost under £100 for paint and materials if you do it yourself. A complete makeover with new flooring, furniture and everything will cost around £1,000–£3,000 but can always be done for less by a savvy shopper.
3. Upgrade the energy efficiency of your home
Making your home more energy efficient also makes it cheaper to run which is a big win. The best ways to improve efficiency are:
All of these will bring your energy bills down, while future-proofing your home. Adding renewables might be a large outlay initially of £5,000–£8,000, but prove themselves to be a good investment as electricity prices rise.
Cost: Draughtproofing doors, windows and wooden floors is an easy weekend job that will cost you less than a couple of hundred pounds. Mineral wool to insulate a loft is just £20 a roll. Secondary glazing is very affordable and can be installed for as little as £50 for a DIY PVCu window kit or £200 for fixed glass.
4. Convert your garage
If you don’t use your garage for a car and it has turned into a dumping ground for old furniture, Christmas decorations and things you intend to fix, why not convert it into living space? A popular use is to add space for a kitchen-diner, but it could also become a home office or playroom. It can add up to 10 per cent to the value of your home, but cost as little as £5,000 and the best thing is that unless your home is listed, you should not need planning permission.
Cost: Expect to pay £5,000–£7,000 for the conversion itself including insulation, adding utilities and windows. Then you will need to add the fitting costs for the room’s intended use. For example, a kitchen will take the total cost to around £8,000–£20,000 depending on the standard of finish.
5. Convert your loft to add a bedroom
If you have room in the roof to convert the loft, it is definitely one of the best ways to add space. An extra bedroom is a great investment on a one or two bedroom home and if you can squeeze in an en suite, it could add considerable value to your home. In most cases it won’t require planning permission and can be as simple as reinforcing the floor, adding in a couple of rooflights, insulating the roof and creating a staircase for access. In about a month, you will have an extra room and potentially added 20 per cent to the value of your home.
Cost: A basic room-in-roof conversion with rooflights costs around £20,000. Dormer conversions are from £30,000 for an average home, but do increase the usable floor space. Adding an en suite will be more expensive but en suite bedrooms can add as much as £10,000 to your property value.
6. Remodel your kitchen
A brand new kitchen isn’t the cheapest improvement, but it could add up to 10 per cent to the value of your home. A simple kitchen upgrade might only require swapping or painting cabinet doors if the units are in good condition – this will save you thousands.
If you have a bit more budget, you might consider a small extension or reworking your space to create a desirable kitchen diner. A well-designed space that has plenty of light, good flow and can really be used as a hub for family life will add even more value to your home.
Cost: A DIY kitchen update (a lick of paint to walls and cupboards, maybe some new tiles and appliances) can cost under £1,000. A budget replacement kitchen will be around £3,000, but the average spend on a kitchen remodel is £8,000–£10,000. If you plan on building a basic extension, budget approximately £1,500 per m² for the building work, then add in the cost of your desired kitchen.
7. Improve your garden
Messy gardens are never a good advert for your home so make sure your garden is tidy at the very least. Even if you aren’t green fingered, keep the law trimmed, prune overgrown trees and bushes and choose low-maintenance landscaping. However, turning your garden into a practical living space can make your home far more desirable. The main things people look for are:
An attractive garden will always increase the asking price of your home – especially in cities where outdoor space is at a premium and some people will pay over £50,000 more for a garden.
Cost: Keeping your garden neat and tidy costs nothing but your time, but for as little as £3,000 you can hire someone to lay some decking or a patio area, replace a sparse lawn with new turf and plant a few interesting trees, shrubs and flowers. For a complete redesign, with zoning, planting and landscaping, expect to pay around £10,000 including labour.