Despite a looming recession, reports suggest a surprise rise in demand for property in January, with house prices rising 0.9%*1 compared to December 2022, when prices fell for a fourth consecutive month.
However, property experts Savills*2 suggest that 2023 could be a rough ride for the property market, with predictions of a -10% drop in house values across the country.
The Bank of England is expected to continue to raise interest rates this year from 3.5% to a peak of around 4.75%, which could cause further issues within the housing market.
This is of course bad news for those who are thinking about selling their home. Even without the recession, most homes will need some general updating and cleaning prior to selling. Larger home improvement projects such as garage conversions, new kitchens, bathrooms or adding a conservatory are great for increasing value but can be costly.
Matthew Shaw, Head of Sales at Ultra LEDs explains: “Improvements which create a sense of space, privacy and give a great first impression will definitely increase saleability, especially at a time when those selling their homes will need it most.”
“Before you start thinking about putting your home up for sale, it’s worth having a look around and making some alterations to give you a better chance of selling for a great price. These changes don’t have to be expensive either as there are plenty of small, inexpensive ways that make a surprising difference to the value of your home. In addition to this, you could also speak to a local estate agent or property expert to ask about the kind of features that tend to make the most difference to buyers in your local area.”
Here are seven simple but effective (and inexpensive) ways to increase the value of your home from Tom Cain, Technical Engineer at Ultra LEDs:
Adding a lick of paint can be done at a relatively low cost and is a simple way to boost the value of your home, with neutral colours working best when you’re trying to appeal to future buyers. Always remember to remove anything too personal as this allows the buyers to adapt the property to fit their own individual needs. You could also consider adding some plants and revamping the sofa with some new cushions or throws.
Lighting is an often overlooked aspect of any space and when installed in the right way can really accent a room and can bring a living space to life, while also adding depth. Add lamps to dark corners to create cosy nooks and add bright lighting to show off your homes’ features. In terms of increasing interest in the property, it’s better for viewings to take place during the day, but if a potential buyer is coming later on, you’ll need to ensure all bulbs are working and that your home also looks good at night. You could even place LED strip lights inside cupboards to add an extra touch of luxury.
Spruce up your garden
Having a front and back garden can be a huge selling point, and while it’s important for buyers to use their imagination, it’s worth spending some time sprucing it up. A couple of cheap plant pots and a clear pathway can make the front of your house more attractive, helping with those all important first impressions.
Out the back, a well-designed garden can add great value. It should feel like an extension of the home rather than just a large piece of grass or concrete. It’s essential to clear out any clutter or rubbish, trim borders, mow the grass (if you have any) and cut back any overgrown trees or bushes (particularly if they block any sunlight). If you have room within your budget, adding some festoon lights can really transform your outdoor space.
Fix superficial defects
While it may not stop a sale from going ahead, small defects and problems can create a perception that a home is poorly looked after and could be a deciding factor if a buyer is looking at multiple properties, whilst bigger issues like damp can put buyers off all together. Common issues that you can rectify quickly to add value to the cost of your home include peeling paint, dirty walls and doors, especially around handles, door frames and around light switches, dripping taps, mouldy sealant around windows or in the bathroom and broken flooring.
Update the kitchen
You don’t need a brand new kitchen to increase the value of your home. If you have a small budget, consider replacing cupboard door handles to more modern ones and giving the cupboard doors themselves a lick of paint. Good lighting will also make a difference in this room too so try adding LED strip lights under kitchen units to add a premium and modern look that prospective buyers may be looking for.
Clean up the bathroom
Typically, a new bathroom can add up to 5%*3 to the value of your home, but thankfully you don’t need to spend a fortune on a new suite as a thorough clean and a refresh is all that’s needed. Regrouting and eliminating all limescale can work wonders, as well as adding a touch of paint to the walls in a neutral shade. Small changes like fresh fluffy towels, good lighting and a nice smelling candle along with a plant can make a bathroom look and feel more luxurious without having to spend a lot of money.