• Victoria

10 renovations to add value to your home . . . and six that won’t !

These will make you home more attractive and could clinch the deal if you plan to sell..

Published by The Irish Times

Off-street parking

Lack of designated parking can be a turn-off for would-be buyers, so it's worth considering as it can add 10 - 15% to the value of your home.

Planning applications can take months to process, and longer if there are objections -

It’s a fairly expensive job too - costing up to £10,000 for parking for 2 cars & additional landscaping costs , but can put your property heads above neighbouring properties.

Kitchen refit

For most of us, the kitchen is the single most important room in the house and it’s also the room that potential buyers will zone in on of it’s not right. It’s also one of the easiest rooms to fix and you don’t have to spend a fortune. If the existing kitchen units are perfectly fine you can get a complete new look at a relatively low cost by painting the cabinets, replacing the worktops and adding new handles to cabinets and drawers, while new tiling will also give an instant update.

A complete new kitchen is an expensive outlay, but if it’s unavoidable, then consider picking an off-the-peg kitchen from a big supplier and using any extra funds to invest in top quality surfaces and lighting.


New bathroom

After the kitchen, the bathroom is the next most important room to tackle when it comes to adding value - and bathrooms typically return 50% of spend.

Is there space to add another shower room? Look at understairs space or other pockets that could be converted to a wet room or guest loo as many homebuyers now expect more than one bathroom in family homes.

"stick to a budget, keep to white and add big fluffy white towels.”

This article hit the headlines this week when an Instagrammer Charlotte Greedy @missgreedyshome refurbed her bathroom for just £95.00

Read the article here at Latest Deals

"I bought a roll of funky vinyl from B&M for £39.99, bought some spray glue and a pen knife and fitted the new flooring over the existing floor," she said.

“I then bought a under-sink storage unit from ebay to hide all the pipework you could see, painted the walls with a tub of cheap £10 white paint from B&Q and it was completely transformed "

Create space

Gone are the days of separate Kitchens & Dining rooms with homeowners now expecting open plan areas where it is easier to circulate & socialise.

If you do plan on knocking through you will need a RSJ (rolled steel joist) for support, & a certificate of compliance

Make room for guests

So-called "income suites " have replaced granny flats as selling points.

Many people are now taking in Airbnb guests, students or tenants under the rent-a-room scheme – whereby home owners can up earn to £14,000 a year tax free by letting out a room – so a separate bedroom suite, while it won’t necessarily add value to a home, could make it more attractive to a buyer and pay for itself in the meantime.

Make your home more energy efficient

This is an investment that no one will particularly notice, although everyone will appreciate lack of draughts and the reasonable bills.

Good insulation, new windows, an insulated attic – this is work that you can’t see, but it’s worth doing because prospective buyers are asking more and more about energy efficiency ( and less energy consumption = cheaper utility bills ) !

External insulation is becoming more popular because it is less disruptive and can also transform the exterior of a house, and new windows will now only cut down on your fuel bills but they will also change the look of your home completely.

Rework your hallway

Must hallways aren’t that large but they make a big impact on visitors and would-be buyers.

“The first 10 seconds are the most important when it comes to showing people a home,” says Brian Dempsey of DNG. You will see a viewer’s eyes going all over a hall and they’re immediately wondering if they can live in this house. So any improvements you make in the hall are worth it. Hall and stairs carpet and freshly painted walls can create an instantly appealing effect . If there is space consider putting in a downstairs loo under the stairs”.

More ideas here from my favourite site - Pinterest

Repair & repaint your front door if you need to , and replace or polish door furniture.

Give timber a new look

Natural wood finishes were extremely popular 20 and 30 years ago and if you’ve moved to a home with a lot of timber finishes, consider painting it all – doors, ceiling beams, staircases, kitchen units, the lot.

One agent cites the case of a large attic room with dark stained beams that “depressed rather than impressed buyers”. She advised painting the entire space white and the house sold within weeks for over the asking price.

Cut back and prune

Trees, hedging and shrubs can enclose a garden in no time, making it appear smaller than it is and cutting out light. Cut back or remove if you have to to create more light into the garden - or use “skirtlifting” where you remove the lower stems of a shrub to create an umbrella-like quality. You won’t lose privacy but you will gain space.

Low Maintenance Garden ideas here from Garden Ideas 101

Finally, keep up with small repairs

Address repairs or they could become more costly to fix if left. Surveyors are being asked for more and more detailed reports these days, - buyers who want to sell their homes feel they can’t face putting it on the market because they haven’t kept up with repairs.


An overspecced, over-large bathroom

"Very few people want to wallow in a free-standing, roll-top bath with nowhere to balance a bar of soap.”

Attic conversions

you can spend too much money on and not get enough use from, says Brian Dempsey of DNG. “make sure that you are going to use that space if you are going to invest in it – and surveyors don’t tend to like them. They often find problems in them which can delay a sale.”

Avoid Maxamalism

This trend looks fab in interiors magazines but can put off prospective buyers if they feel they'll need to redecorate as soon as they move in.

A home gym, movie room or meditation space are all good ideas if you’re in your forever home, but if your aspiration is to sell, be wary of tailoring a room to personal taste.

The next person may not see the point of surround sound or floor-to-ceiling wall-to-wall mirrors in what should really be just another bedroom. It may seem like common sense but avoid strong personal colours too.

houses that sell faster are far more bland, as buyers want to imagine themselves living there and they can’t do that if it’s too personalised.


It is a lovely place to be on a warm day and theoretically a great addition to a home, but they’re expensive to install and are often underused. A poorly planned conservatory can be too warm in summer, too cold in winter and can simply suffer from lack of purpose.

Ambitious landscaping

Yes, the landscape gardener left full instructions as to how to manage the green wall and how often to service the water features, but landscaping will not necessarily add value to your home. Elaborate plant schemes could intimidate potential purchasers who won’t want the expense or time spent on garden maintenance.

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