Home improvements that ‘reduce’ your property’s value

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Phil Spencer shares importance home renovations in 2021

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The property market is proving to be more resilient than many experts thought. House prices are yet to drop at the rate despite political and economic uncertainty the UK is currently enduring, so owners who are looking to sell still have a good chance of securing a top price for their home.

Those who want to make doubly sure they get the highest amount possible for their home often choose to complete major home improvement jobs before putting the house on the market.

While many of these improvements will add good value to a home, Help Me Fix has found that some increasingly popular improvements can actually reduce a home’s market value.

One home improvement that surprisingly can devalue a property is a home cinema.

A home cinema used to be reserved for the mega-rich, celebrities and those with sprawling mansions.

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However, they’ve become a relatively common addition to larger properties, not least those with generous subterranean spaces.

Home cinemas cost around £15,000 to install but it’s estimated to only increase the value of a home by 0.9 percent.

Based on the current average house price (£295,903), this 0.9 percent is equivalent to £2,663 which means the whole endeavour has actually reduced a potential sale income by -£12,337.

Another home improvement that could set sellers back is removing a bath and replacing it with a standalone shower.

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This renovation project in a family bathroom costs £2,765.

However, it’s thought to actually reduce the value of a home by two percent resulting in a sale income reduction of -£8,683.

Loft conversions are wildly popular, especially in densely populated, urban areas, but their huge expense (£37,500 on average) means that even though they add 10.8 percent value to a property’s price, there’s still a -£5,542 decline in sale profit.

It’s a similar story with wine cellars. They cost £35,000 to install and add 10 percent to value which culminates in a -£5,410 loss in sale profit.

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Solar panels are an oft-discussed home improvement which, if you’re in the property for a very long time, can result in decent energy price savings.

However, in the short-term, they add little to a property’s value (0.5 percent) and result in a -£4,395 reduction in sale profit.

Meanwhile, the addition of a landscaped garden costs £3,750, leading to a property value boost of 1.2 percent. However, it also reduces sale profit by -£199.

Homeowners who want to be sure that their home improvement efforts add real value to a property and also result in a higher profit upon selling the home would be wise to stick to the more tried and tested space-creating improvements.

A garage conversion can increase sale profit by £15,840, building a garden office boosts profit by £12,693 and creating an open-plan living area will put an extra £9,762 in a seller’s pocket.

Ettan Bazil, CEO and Founder of Help me Fix said: “There is an assumption that major home improvements are always a good investment due to the fact that they add to a property’s market value. But what a lot of people don’t do is account for the initial cost of completing the improvement and measure it against the value added to the home.

“If the former outweighs the latter, your home will certainly sell for more, but your personal profit will still be reduced.

“We would advise homeowners to take their time and conduct thorough research before committing to any major improvements to ensure that they’re going to be better off at the end of the day.

“You might find that smaller, more basic improvements such as a new boiler, fixed roof, or double-glazing installation will actually prove to be better long-term investments as well as putting less immediate strain on your finances.”

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