How much value does a garden add – and what you can do to improve yours when you’re selling

A garden has always been desirable for home buyers, but post-lockdown it’s more important than ever

(Image credit: Ikea)

Back in the ancient past, er 2019 anyway, a well-kept garden could add 20 per cent to the value of your home, according to research by MyToolShed. In the post-lockdown present, a garden is even more desirable with prospective buyers searching for homes with a garden on Rightmove up by over 100 per cent in June 2020 compared to June 2019. And it is something we have noticed too, which search for garden ideas at an all time high.

We’re not talking rolling acres either. Outside space is what buyers are after and even the most modest can count, turning a property listing from a carry-on-searching to a looks-possible.

There is one type of garden that stands out, though. A south-facing garden can attract a £22,000 premium, says Rightmove. A study by the site looked at just under 400,000 three and four bedroom homes across Great Britain. Those listed as having a south-facing garden were found to have an asking price premium of seven per cent. 

Of course, this doesn’t mean that you can add £22,000 to what you think your home is worth if you’re lucky enough to have a coveted south-facing garden. But whichever way your outdoor space is oriented and however compact or generous it is, making the most of it when you’re putting your home on the market is well worth your effort to get the maximum price and achieve a speedier sale.

With a bank holiday weekend coming up, now is the moment to revamp your garden if you’re putting your home up for sale. Use our top tips to get yours looking its loveliest.

1. Mow the lawn and weed 

Yes, we know it sounds obvious but not only will cutting the grass and getting rid of weeds make your outside space look better for the listing photographs, getting these tasks done – and staying on top of them – will add to the impression of a well cared-for home. No one wants to inherit your neglected tasks when they move in.

And when it comes to weeding, make sure you include the patio and other paved areas plus any driveway and path in your rounds along with beds and borders. Unwanted growth here won’t add to the property’s kerb appeal nor make viewers imagine themselves eating alfresco.

2. Fix and paint fences

Do the boundaries of your garden look in good condition? Fences that look fit to fall over are no enticement to buy, so should be repaired. Think about painting or staining fences, too. It’s easy to do and, with a choice of fabulous colours, can instantly update your outdoor space.

3. Use your outdoor furniture

While the weather’s still halfway decent, you can easily demonstrate that your garden is an outdoor living space by leaving dining tables and chairs and outdoor seating areas in place. 

Don’t have the right furniture? Now’s the moment to grab a garden furniture deal on tables, chairs, sofas, and benches. After all, you can take them with you to your new place. 

4. Sort out your shed

If you have outside storage, show it off to its best advantage. Not every prospective buyer will ask to look inside the shed, but even a peek through the window could give away the fact that there’s a jumble of stuff in there, so de-clutter now.

And just as with fences, if the outside is looking tatty, it’s amazing what a coat of paint or fresh stain can do to make the shed look better.

5. And if you are lucky enough to have a south-facing garden?

When your garden has this most-wanted orientation, make sure your property listing includes the fact. It could mean it’s your home that gets the offer rather than someone else’s, and you certainly don’t want to wait for viewers to get their compasses out to check (although some will, so don’t be surprised).

  • Read more on how much value a garden can add to your home on MyToolShed

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Sarah Warwick
Freelance Editor

Sarah is a freelance journalist and editor writing for websites, national newspapers, and magazines. She’s spent most of her journalistic career specialising in homes – long enough to see fridges become smart, decorating fashions embrace both minimalism and maximalism, and interiors that blur the indoor/outdoor link become a must-have. She loves testing the latest home appliances, revealing the trends in furnishings and fittings for every room, and investigating the benefits, costs and practicalities of home improvement. It's no big surprise that she likes to put what she writes about into practice, and is a serial house revamper. For, Sarah reviews coffee machines and vacuum cleaners, taking them through their paces at home to give us an honest, real life review and comparison of every model.