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Home improvements vs moving house – which is right for you?

Home improvements vs moving house – which is right for you?

With rising house prices, plus the costs of moving, it's no wonder that many homeowners would rather do up their house than move. We take a look at how renovating could add value to your home.

Chris King
From the Home team
4
minute read
posted 24 FEBRUARY 2020

Should I move or improve?

If you want more space to accommodate a growing family or you crave a touch of luxury like an ensuite bathroom, you have two choices – move to a new property that meets your needs or make some improvements to your existing home.

Both options come with pros and cons. You may have to live on a building site for a while (even seemingly small jobs can create huge amounts of mess), but you could also add value to your home as well as making life more pleasant when the work's completed.

However, it's important to remember that there are some things no amount of DIY or renovation work can change. So if you don't love the area your home's in, or your garden's the size of a postage stamp, it might be worth selling your house up rather than doing it up.

Which home improvements add the most value?

Whether it's installing wooden floors, adding a conservatory or landscaping the garden, there are numerous ways you can improve your home and add value in the process.

But exactly how much value you add to your property will depend on what improvements you choose to make.

Check our infographic to see just how much you could gain from your home improvements.

The best way to increase the value of your home is to add space. Adding an extra bedroom will earn you the most money, adding roughly 8.8% to your home's value.

The next best investment you can make is a loft conversion. This will add 7.10% - that's an average £15,189 — to the value of the average home.

But even relatively simple improvements, such as installing wooden floors, can offer a big return, adding an extra £4,279 to the value of the average house.

And if your garden is looking neglected, it could be worth paying someone to sort it out. Not only will you get to enjoy the results, you could also be looking at an extra 3.6% on the value of your house.

How much can I add to the value of my home? 

Exactly how much value improvements will add very much depends on where you live. In London, where house prices are much higher to begin with, returns will also be higher.

It's also worth noting that most areas will have a ceiling price – the maximum value your home will reach, regardless of what improvements you make. Before planning any big changes, it can be helpful to speak to a local estate agent or surveyor to see your plans might affect the property's value.

How will home improvements affect my insurance?

If you do intend to make home improvements, don't forget to tell your insurance provider. Otherwise, if you have to make a claim, your policy may be invalidated.

Why do I need to tell my insurance provider about my home improvements?

Because if you've got building work going on at home, your insurance provider may consider that an extra risk to your house and its contents. It's not just the work itself that adds to the risk, either — your home may be unsecured, and more people will have access to it.

Your insurance provider will also need to know about any changes to the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, as this will affect your quote. You'll also need to flag up any changes to locks on windows and doors, which will be considered a safety issue.

It sounds like a hassle, but a quick call to your insurance provider could save you a lot of trouble in the long run.

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