2020 has begun as 2019 ended – at least here in East Anglia, with cold, wet and windy weather though daytime hours slowly increasing as spring approaches.

What caught our eye over Christmas and New Year were some figures about the cost of moving and the cost of improving.

Obviously these are national figures and we’re sure property transactions in London and the south east skew the data – but there is food for thought.

The average spend in 2018 was £54,411 on home renovations

That’s quite a sum don’t you think – until it’s offset by the revelation that moving costs on average £22,084 with stamp duty accounting for the bulk of that.

This allows us to make the assumption (tenuous admittedly) that by staying in your home and spending that average (and not moving) it will cost £32,000 if one is deducted from the other.

A word of caution though

You don’t automatically recoup what you’ve invested in converting or extending but you will cover much of it. It stands to reason that a semi-detached home, for example, with a single storey extension creating a large dining-kitchen-living room will be more desirable and worth more than neighbours in homes that have not been improved. What you mustn’t do is exceed the ceiling price – the price someone will ordinarily pay in a particular postcode or road.

Example: if the property that sold for the highest price in your road was £350,000 and it’s similar to yours, don’t expect your £30,000 extension to make the value £380,000 in the short term. We can advise you on property values as we are connected with several estate agents who will offer an accurate valuation of your property before and after improvement – just ask us for more information.

What should you spend the money on?

There are five ways to maximise space in your home any extending:

  1. Creating a large open kitchen diner space – 86% of properties
  2. Adding an additional bathroom, or refurbishing the current bathroom – 64% of properties
  3. Changing the layout of the home – 46% of properties
  4. Adding an extension or converting the loft – 36% of properties
  5. Adding a utility room – 32% of properties

The final one surprised us a little bit but again perhaps it shouldn’t given the rise of working from home, which we blogged about here.

You also need to keep a firm rudder on:

  • Budget
  • Planning
  • Tradespeople
  • Least used rooms – which tend to be bedrooms and dining rooms

If you’d like any free professional advice on extending or converting, contact Envision CAD today.