Which Home Improvements?

Before setting your house price and putting your house on the market it is a good idea to consider whether there are any home improvements you should carry out to either:

  1. raise the value of the house by more than their cost and so produce a profit when you sell
  2. bring your house up to a standard where it will sell more easily

If your house is in poor condition, carrying out improvements can increase the sales price by a worthwhile amount. However spending to improve a home that is already in good condition, rarely recovers the money that has been spent.

Worthwhile Home Improvements

Decorating is the most cost-effective form of home improvement and decorating your house in a neutral way can add up to 10% to the final value of your home. Other improvements that are inexpensive and will help to add value to your home are adding new cupboard space and stripping floorboards.

If you are prepared to spend more, the rooms that benefit most in terms of adding value to a home are improvements to kitchens and bathrooms. If these are outdated, worn out or damaged such that they would make selling the house difficult they can be replaced by good-looking but inexpensve replacements.

Many popular home improvements do not add as much value to a home's selling price as they cost and should not be undertaken except where necessary. This includes improvements such as fitting a new kitchen and replacing windows. These improvements might still make sense if you can do the work yourself. If you can fit kitchen units yourself to a high standard you could expect an increase in value over and above what you spend. On the other hand, shoddy work fitting the kitchen units can reduce the value of your home.

Home Improvements To Avoid

In some cases home ‘improvements’ can actually reduce the value of a property. In a survey it has been found that almost half (49%) of homeowners have either carried out or plan to undertake DIY jobs which property experts believe will have a negative impact on the sale price of their homes.

Laying cheap wooden flooring is the most common home improvement that is not popular with prospective buyers.

New carpets do not add to the value of a home although they will make it easier to sell if the if the existing carpet is in a bad state. If you do need to fit a new carpet fit a cheap one with a neutral colour.

Installing plastic double glazing and removing fireplaces are also likely to lower values.

The bottom line is generally not to spend money to improve a house you plan to sell, with the exception of decorating, unless the house is in such poor condition that it cannot be sold without improvements. For example: the house needs a new roof to keep out the rain; or a modern bathroom. 




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