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Property owners choosing to improve rather than move
According to new research from the Royal Association of Chartered Surveyors, more homeowners are choosing to improve their current homes as opposed to moving. Its thought that the sluggish state of the property market is prompting this phenomenon, and it tends to be more prevalent in areas where the property market is more depressed, such as Ireland and the West Midlands, as 75% of people in Ireland chose to improve, while in the West Midlands this figure is 71%. Somewhat surprisingly, even in areas such as London where the market is relatively healthy, people are choosing to stay put, perhaps because of the high cost of property.
When asked, 44% of surveyors, an extra bedroom added the most value, while improvements such as a new kitchen or bathroom were nearly as valuable. Other renovations such as a new conservatory, or restoring period features, while nice, don’t add substantial value to a home. Much also depends on the quality of the work and the location of the property.
The values of homes which are close to a noisy road or railway station are likely to be lower, and not surprisingly subsidence has a negative effect on a property’s value. The RICS urges homeowners to be realistic about the value added by home improvements, and advises them to make sure any extensions are in keeping with the size and style of the property.