Tag: housing market

 

May is a popular month for people selling their homes, but you don’t have to be looking to sell to think about adding value to your property. There are big and small ways to boost how much your home is worth, and also make it a nicer place to be.

 

 

Fix structural problems

 

If you are looking to sell, then taking care of major structural issues such as a sagging roofline or persistent damp issues is a necessary step to making it sale-worthy – but they’re not issues that you’ll want to live with for any length of time either. There are a variety of tradespeople available depending on the issue, from specialist roofers to structural engineers, bricklayers, and damp proofers.

 

Create a loft conversion

 

Building up is generally regarded as the single biggest boost you can give to your home’s value. It’s a major investment, but one that pays off with new living space that can completely change the feel of your home. Whether it’s a dormer, hip to gable, or mansard roof conversion, you will need to have plans drawn up and may need planning permission, before hiring an experienced loft conversion specialist to take on the project.

 

 

Build an extension

 

Similarly to loft conversions, adding more space to your home will add value and give you new ways to enjoy your property. Whether it’s creating a kitchen-diner or a dedicated space for an office or studio, there are firms that specialise in extensions and conversions and can help you realise your vision.

 

Update your kitchen

 

Many families value having a modern, usable kitchen, that can be used not just for cooking, but for eating, relaxing and entertaining. If you have the space and budget, updating your kitchen with all mod-cons can be a real boost for your home.

 

Refresh your bathroom

 

It’s difficult for anyone to feel like they can get clean in a tired and broken-down bathroom, with cracked tiles, mouldy grouting, and damaged units. While a bathroom fitter can completely revamp the room, you could refresh it with smaller changes – a tiler can add new tiles for cleaner look, while a plumber can swap in new taps and hardware.

 

 

Add a parking space

 

If you live in a town or city where parking is at a premium and neighbours are battling over spaces on the street, then can it can be a worthwhile investment to replace your front garden with a driveway, giving you peace of mind that you’ll always have a safe place to keep your car. A driveway needs to be built to last, so only hire an expert with a good track record.

 

Boost your kerb appeal

 

No one wants to live in the most run-down home on the street, and for buyers as well, first impressions count. There is plenty you can do to smarten up your kerb appeal, from adding a porch, replacing your front door, upgrading your windows or repainting the exterior.

 

Take care of the little things

 

Sometimes the little things don’t feel that small when you have to deal with them everyday, so why not make them better? Give new life to a room with a lick of paint or roll of wallpaper; add new lighting to your hallway; finally sort out the toilet with the dodgy flush – if it adds value to you, sometimes that’s all the value you need to add.

 

A report recently published by the National Housing Federation outlined that currently young people are trapped when it comes to buying a house, often living at home with their parents for longer, and not enough is being done to address the housing issues of future generations. In addition, not only is there a shortage of new homes, incomes are not increasing in line with the rising cost of renting and mortgages, and if anything, the situation will get worse unless things significantly change.

An informal poll in the MyBuilder office confirmed the NHF findings. Only three people owned homes and guess what, they were over forty. So what has happened to the noughties generation and why aren’t they buying?

house-crisis

Speaking to one of the three homeowners I discovered a typically pre-noughties story – she bought her first house back in the mid eighties aged about 30. At that time, Thatcher was in power and the great sell-off of council property was underway meaning everyone wanted a foot on that property ladder. Endowment mortgages were rife, though thankfully her partner had the foresight to convert to a repayment before it was too late.

Paying for her first house, a two-bed cottage in the New Forest with a small garden, was a stretch but doable. The cost to buy then was less than £45k in total. Fast-forward to today and after a little research online, I found the same property had been sold recently for over £250k. It was a pretty but modest place but more importantly for my colleague it represented a real chance to invest and recoup – the chance to buy her own home.

Interestingly (and worringly) the report also stated that by 2020, “the price of a first-time buyer’s home will increase by 42%… and rents are expected to be 46% higher than today”.

Conversion and renovation work may become more plentiful for MyBuilder users in the UK countryside, following the announcement of a consultation on re-defining permitted development when it comes to former agricultural buildings. The Minister of State for Decentralisation and Cities, Greg Clark, announced the consultation this week, which would make it easier for farmers and developers to convert barns and outbuildings into farm shops, retail outlets, gyms, leisure facilities or entertainment venues.

Naturally, the proposals are controversial among those who live in the countryside. Some are keen to see the regeneration and new jobs that the scheme may bring, but others are worried that the move could lead to unchecked development and ruin the character of our green, open spaces. What do you think? Should we allow development without planning permission in such instances? Or is the countryside too special to be subject to unregulated conversions of this kind?

 

Photo by RONg

house prices falling

Figures from Nationwide show that house prices have dropped 1.5% from June last year, the biggest fall in three years. The average house price is now £165,738. Prices fell by 1% in the UK in the last quarter, although prices in London were up 1% in the same period. The housing market remains somewhat static, but how does this and the driving down of prices affect our tradesmen and tradeswomen at MyBuilder? Let us know whether a stalled market is great for renovations and repairs work or whether the lack of new homeowners is meaning less work overall in the industry.

Photo: Images of Money.


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