If you're thinking of selling up, one of the most important aspects to consider will be how to add value to your home. After all, you want to get the best price possible so you can comfortably take that next step up the ladder, but just what can add the most value? Online estate agent eMoov.co.uk has taken a look.
The survey results show that, interestingly, most of it is to do with the bare bones of a property rather than the aesthetics, something that's often assumed to be the most important when selling a home. For example, at the top of the list is a spare bedroom, with 25% of respondents believing that this feature adds the most value to a property, be it for a place to sleep or for a home office, nursery, games room or workshop.
Having suitable outdoor space was the next key to a higher property price, with 19% believing it added the most value, followed by a garage (16%), an en-suite in the main bedroom (13%) and an extra car parking space (11%).
Other important factors included having good local amenities (5%), a strong internet connection (4%), a strong mobile phone signal (3%) and a good community atmosphere (2%), which shows that in many cases, location really does matter – but it's the solid features of the house itself that often come out on top.
"Often those looking to sell will pour money into additional DIY projects around the house, in an attempt to increase the value of the property and justify pushing up their asking price by a few thousand pounds or more," said Russell Quirk of eMoov.co.uk.
"Unfortunately, a lot of the time they may as well be pouring it down the drain, as potential buyers will care little for aesthetic improvements, due to having their own long-time view of how they want the property to be. This research goes to show that it's the fundamentals people are concerned about."
Many of these results have been backed up by additional research from Tepilo estate agency, which looked at just what constitutes a dream home, but here we can see that aesthetics can play a part, too.
For example, the most popular features people want in their dream house include en-suites in every bedroom (48%), a TV room/snug (48%), a sizeable kitchen with its own kitchen island (47%) and an impressive garden (47%), with many of these being fundamental to the property.
However, people also lust after features that can be seen as more glamorous – rather than practical – such as walk-in wardrobes and dressing rooms (45%), an indoor swimming pool (42%), a conservatory or orangery (38%), open fires and wood burning stoves (37%), a double front door (28%) and his and hers bathrooms (25%). A further 38% would want their dream home to contain high-tech security features, while 35% would want high-tech mod-cons, such as remote controlled heating, lighting and sound systems.
Other luxuries include a balcony (43%), a relaxation room (39%), a library (35%), a gym (32%) and even an indoor cinema (29%), while 27% would like a guest lodge, 25% a wine cellar, 20% a bowling alley and 17% a nightclub or bar. Perhaps not things you'll find in a typical suburban home!
While many of the most desirable features could perhaps only be covered by a lottery win, there may be things you can do to make some of those dreams a reality – and you may be able to boost the value of your home in the process.
If you've got a garage that's filled with years' worth of rubbish and odd tools here and there, why not give it a spruce up? Consider turning it into a fully-fledged workshop – provided you've got suitable parking spaces elsewhere – and you could instantly appeal to the more hands-on viewers. An unused corner in a large bedroom could be turned into an impressive wardrobe, for example, or even a small en-suite, while a box room could be transformed into a dressing room or nursery, depending on the kind of buyers you're looking to attract.
Given that some of these fundamentals are so important to prospective buyers, it could pay to spend a bit of time thinking about how you can show off your home in the best possible light. Having a suitable savings pot to dip into is of course vital, but it could be worth it, and could even mean that you're one step closer to achieving your dream home.
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