Which renovations should you make to your home?
Can home renovations raise the value of your home for selling? ‘As much as we’d like to think that the money we pour into renovations will come back at us in full when we sell our home, that’s rarely the case. ‘However, certain renovations add value immediately, some small and exterior-focused improvements offer better value than larger, challenging renovations,’ states Craig Hutchison, CEO of Engel & Völkers Southern Africa. Craig warns that many clients choose to add lavish features, thinking that it would make their property stand out, but sometimes standing out might actually be the wrong thing to do. ‘What you like might not be what the next owner would want in a home. If you customise your home too much, you are narrowing your potential buyers down to a very niche few, and this could result in your home remaining on the market for years.’ Make sure that your home’s exterior is on par with the rest of the neighbourhood by making minor improvements to create maximum appeal.
Renovating? What is the best return on investment?
• Loft conversion +192% It’s often the easiest, cheaper way to create an extra space in your house. The loft could be used for an extra bedroom, playroom, study or games room, which will immediately add value.
• Going green +65% Revise your home’s energy consumption. Many buyers look at the amount of energy a home saves because of the increase in electricity costs. Install solar heating panels, switch all or a few of your light bulbs to LED/CFLs, fix leaky taps, install water saving shower heads and have a timer installed on your geysers.
• Braai room +80% There are two types of people: those with braai rooms and those still wanting one. A braai room means being able to entertain, irrespective of the elements outside. A small unusable area can easily be altered into a practical braai area. Folding/ sliding doors are also an option, enabling a person to have an area completely open when needed, yet closed when the need arises. •
Decking/patio +133% Buyers see a deck as offering a seamless transition from inside to outside. It increases a home’s usable space – but costs only about half of what it would to build a new room. A well-made deck is something that can add real wow-factor, as well as functionality.
• Landscaping Another area that can add significant value is the garden and the entrance to the house. Neat garden beds full of healthy plants, manicured lawns and well maintained boundary walls or fences all create a good impression of your home, and can be quite easily achieved.
• New bathroom +75% Simple bathroom fixes are a great way to redecorate your home and add value, without having to invest a lot of money in renovations. Refresh the paintwork, deep clean, replace the taps, replace that shower curtain with a glass screen, and invest in a heated towel rail rather than a hook on the back of the door. Let plenty of light in – fit more or bigger windows, or skylights.
• Redecorating +26% Redecorating can make a property look brand new. Add a splash of paint and change the light switches, as the standard white light switches tend to look yellow over time. Rethink window treatments – is the glass sparkling, check that the latches are working correctly. Replace old rugs and ensure all of your flooring is clean and well kept.
• New kitchen +80% Redecorating your kitchen is one of the best ways to add value to your home. Your kitchen has to look up-to-date, clean and functional. Replace countertops, cabinet doors/handles and drawer fronts. Create as much space as possible. Use down-lights underneath the cupboards or in bulkheads to light splash-backs and countertops for a warm and welcoming atmosphere.
• Garage +25% Fit the garage with shelves and cupboard space and replace the garage door. Consider building a flatlet above the garage to create extra living space, or serve as an income generator.
• Security This is possibly one of the most important features for re-sale value. Adding features such as electric fencing, beams and perhaps security cameras or merely upgrading your fencing will create a safer environment for you and for the potential buyer.