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Millions spent on home improvements every year


A home should be much more than a house- it’s our haven; our very own little place to escape to when things get tough and a reflection of our lives and personalities. According to nationwide skip hire, Proskips, it’s also something we like to spend our hard earned cash on- and lots of it- “A survey by Lloyd’s Bank found that 44% of UK Homeowners have undertaken significant home improvements in the past year, with 6% spending between £12,500 and £25,000.

Whilst a third of people said they’d undertaken the improvement to their properties to add value prior to a sale, the rest simply wanting a nicer environment to live in. But it’s not all plain sailing- one in ten reported that they’d made costly mistakes by doing it themselves, most of whom admitted they would have saved money if they’d have gone with a professional. Williams Lynch says “DIY is one of those things that a lot of people think they can do, without doing any proper research or preparation first. The end result can be a worse looking job than you started with, along with heavy costs to put it right.”

Whilst a bodge job can have disastrous consequences, well done home improvements can add significant value to any home. Those who have gone on to sell their properties after fixing them up say they’ve added between £12k and £25k to their value. The most lucrative home improvements are:

  • Loft conversion- 10% increase in value, (outlay between £15k and £40k)
  • Additional bathroom- 6% (costs between £3k and £6k)
  • New kitchen- 5.8% (costs around £8k)
  • Central heating- 5.4% (costs around £3k)
  • Conservatory- 5% (costs between £5k and £20k)
  • Roof (costs between £4k-5k)


Marylebone estate agent, Kubie Gold Associates says it’s always worth investing in the highest quality products you can afford- “Buying expensive paint brushes can seem like an unnecessary expense if money is tight, but the difference in the result can be well worth it. The finish you’ll get will be far more professional, and cheap brushes and tools often break, meaning you end up paying double anyway.”

If you’re thinking about undertaking home improvements, be clear about your motivations for doing so. If you’re simply wanting to improve your home and continue living there for the long haul, then the world’s your oyster and you can be as adventurous as you like. If you’re planning to sell on the other hand, you’ll need to consider catering for people with more conservative tastes. Brightly coloured living rooms and funky looking kitchen units are not everyone’s cup of tea, whereas neutral tones and classic styles create a blank canvas that appeals to anyone. The main thing to do is make sure you’re prepared and you’ve budgeted for all eventualities- always allow a little wiggle room in case things don’t go according to plan.

With property prices on the up, now’s the time that lots of savvy homeowners are thinking about selling up for a tidy profit. Home improvements can hugely increase how much you can sell for- but don’t forget a badly done job will have the opposite effect.

Guest article written by Property Division team.