Everyone loves a spot of DIY. Research from Lloyds Bank has found that 44% of UK homeowners have completed significant home improvements already or plan to in the future, with 33% making changes in order to add value to their property. An admirable idea, but what if it goes wrong?
According to the figures, 10% of those surveyed have had a large-scale home improvement or DIY project go wrong, with the typical cost of repair totalling £3,200. Given that the average improvement project costs £4,000 to begin with, it means homeowners could be shelling out almost double to fix things, and with 54% blaming shoddy workmanship for the issues, it could be a particularly difficult pill to swallow.
The figures highlight a clear need to plan sufficiently, including saving enough money to cover the initial cost as well as having a contingency fund, not to mention having the right skills to complete the work (or finding a suitable builder if you're not having a go yourself). Research is key, as is having a good savings account, preferably an easy-access version should you need to dip in and fix things.
If you're thinking about improving your home, you're not alone! The study highlighted the most common reasons for embarking on a home improvement project, including to add value (33%) and to change the purpose of a room (32%). The spare room was the most popular place to be altered, with 54% choosing to change it into an office and 7% making it an entertainment room.
Happily, those seeking to increase value had largely succeeded. Some 29% of those surveyed estimated that the work had added between £10,001 and £25,000 to the value of their home, so this kind of home improvement can really pay off if done well.
A separate study, this time conducted by DIY retail giant Kingfisher, has shown that some people have even bigger ambitions. Key features for many people included swimming pools (28%), fireplaces (26%), conservatories (23%) and hot tubs (22%), however it seems that energy efficiency is starting to move up the agenda too.
Almost a third (31%) said that they wanted to introduce measures to cut their energy bills – up from 4% in 2012 – and, given that 65% of homeowners surveyed were concerned about rising energy bills, it seems that energy-focused DIY projects could become even more important in the future.
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