All property investors are aware that there are some key factors that make up how much a home is worth: location, square footage, school catchment area, and the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. Those wanting to add value to their properties should be aware, however, of the renovation work that could actually de-value an investment…
Landlords looking to sell their properties are likely to be working on keeping the home maintained and looking modern, but some repair and renovation work could actually hurt a property’s value.
Investors will be keen to achieve a good level of capital appreciation on their properties, so making the style and contents of a property appeal to the largest proportion of buyers is vital.
So what renovation work won’t add value to your property?
Highly stylised décor
You may think that adding some elaborate wallpaper or striking colours will spruce up your property, but remember that buyers are looking for a blank canvas. When prospective buyers come to view your property, they want to imagine their own things in there, so don’t put them off with highly stylised décor.
Wallpaper with a loud pattern or texture won’t appeal to everyone and can be difficult to remove. Instead, a fresh coat of paint in a neutral colour is a great idea to help you stage the home.
Similarly, bright colours won’t appeal to the majority of buyers, and that’s what you’re trying to avoid. If your property already has bold colours on the walls, leave plenty of time to cover them with neutral tones.
Getting rid of a bedroom
If your property has two small bedrooms, you might think that knocking down a wall and creating one large room will bring up the home’s worth; but remember, the more bedrooms a house has, the higher price it can command.
Property listing prices are set by looking at what comparable homes are selling for in the same market, and the number of bedrooms is a vital feature in comparing two properties. Removing a bedroom can therefore bring the price down. Typically, buyers are looking for enough bedrooms for their household and a spare room.
Replacing the bath with a shower
If your property only has one bathroom, you may think that replacing the bath with a shower will improve convenience and appeal to the modern buyer. But this could be a very bad idea; if you’re trying to sell to families with children, remember that many parents prefer bathing their children in a bath. However, if there is more than one bathroom in the property, replacing one bath with a shower could increase the value.
While you’re working on the bathroom, be careful not to install overly personalised or elaborate appliances that are difficult to use and clean. These will often seem too complex to buyers, who generally prefer simple features.
Storage is an incredibly important feature to buyers when looking for a new home; people need space for their belongings and to avoid the property looking cluttered. If you’re trying to create more space by removing storage, such as wardrobes and cupboards, think again.
Storage is a necessity for most homebuyers and will also help you keep the property neat and tidy during viewings. If viewers can see that everything is tucked away nicely, they will consider the home practical and smart.
It’s true that our lives are becoming more high-tech, but not everyone is keen on having an electronic household (yet!). You may feel that adding some built-in electronics, such as a home cinema, will really modernise the home and prove aspirational to buyers, but not everyone will be keen.
Some buyers will think that built-in electronics are too complicated or take up too much space. There’s also the fact that electronics can quickly become outdated, so some buyers will worry that they will have to replace them in the near future, which may cost a lot of money.
Having your property’s gardens landscaped by a professional may seem like a sure-fire way to attract buyers and increase kerb appeal. It’s true that a healthy, tidy garden can certainly improve a home’s charm and raise value, but beware of the time and money it will require to maintain it.
Anything too fancy and complicated will usually require a lot of maintenance and money to keep it to such a high standard, which will put most buyers off. Keeping it simple and neat will go much further in securing a good offer.
If your garden is already landscaped, remember that our award-winning Landlord Insurance covers it against any damage caused by an insured event as standard: http://justlandlords.co.uk/landlord-insurance
It’s completely normal to look at renovation work you could conduct to add value to your property, but be aware that some changes you make could negatively impact the price you achieve. Follow these tips to avoid a costly mistake!