As a general rule, adding additional floor space to your home should in most cases add value to your property. More space equates to better quality accommodation and should you put your house up for sale its value should reflect that. However, there are exceptions to this rule and instances which might cause you to think twice before progressing any plans to extend your home. Here is a short list of potential pitfalls:
Adding an extra bedroom
In the UK we put a lot of store by the number of bedrooms a property has, and, according to the Nationwide Building Society, homeowners can boost the value of a typical house by more than a fifth (20%) by adding an extra double bedroom and a bathroom through an extension or a loft conversion.
However, there are occasions when you may want to think carefully before building an additional bedroom. This is certainly the case when considering converting a garage into an extra room – an increasingly popular option for families who want to expand their floor space. Some homes might even lose value if they don’t have a garage, especially if they are located in an area where parking is a problem and a garage is seen as a real asset.
Don’t over-personalise the extension
Over-personalising your home, for example, turning a modest bungalow into a sprawling Mediterranean-style villa or adding garish features may not be the best way to invest your money. If the alterations you have made are too outlandish, they won’t be attractive to other people and would-be buyers, should you want to sell in the future. Opting for classic home improvements, using good quality materials is the best way to ensure your money is well-spent.
The conservatory debate
While adding a conservatory to the side of a property may seem to be a simple way of increasing the value of your home – there are a number of caveats. If the conservatory you choose is on the cheap side with windows made of uPVC rather than glass, it might have the effect of lowering the value of your home and putting off buyers should you want to sell in the future.
Likewise, if you have a small garden and intend to use some of this space for the new conservatory – you should weigh up the advantages of one over another. Gardens add value to a house and ideally a conservatory or orangery should act as a link between house and garden, not take it all up. You should also consider whether adding an extension to your home – maybe extending the size of the kitchen and adding a utility room – rather than a conservatory, is a better use of your space and money.
Know your home and your area
Ultimately, the decision as to whether it’s worthwhile investing in an extension depends on the original value of your property. If the increase in value of the new extension is less than the cost of the building works, you may be best advised to reconsider and explore putting your money elsewhere. You should also research your area – what do similar properties near you, which have an extension, sell for? This will help you decide whether you proceed or not.
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