How to Increase the Value of Your Home: Part 1

So we’re doing a couple of multi-part guides, but these are all pretty important pieces, especially with spring right around the corner (we hope!), as it means that the housing market is going to get a little bit of a boost – which means that if you’re trying to sell, unless your house is already super duper fabulous, you might want to stick your neck out amongst the rest of the houses in your neighbourhood and increase the value of your home, whilst you’re at it. Read on to find out what you need to do in part one of our guide.

Upgrade the Kitchen

kitchen

Most design experts will agree that the kitchen, and the bathroom/s are where you want to spend your money. If they’re not up to scratch, the people viewing your house will walk in and think, “Oh crikey, I’ve got to spend £5,000/£10,000/£15,000 on renovating the kitchen, ripping out the bathrooms”. Now, that doesn’t mean that you’ve got to drop that amount of money on your kitchen, especially if you’re moving, but a couple of hundred quid can go a hugely long way in making your kitchen look a million times better, making your home easier to sell. If it’s a shabby wooden kitchen, for example, lay down some sheets on the floor, empty the cupboards, masking tape the worktops, clean the doors and then paint them. Viola! Instant update. Add new handles (about £8 each). give your worktops a good old clean (or replace them with laminate, if you have the budget – around £400 for a really good laminate in an average kitchen) and paint the walls. Move around your paintings or spend £20 in the supermarket on new canvasses and accessories and you’ll notice a huge difference. Honestly. A huge difference.

If you’re just upgrading the kitchen for you, consider adding granite/marble countertops, switching white goods for stainless steel kitchen appliances, or knock down a wall so that you can expand your kitchen and turn it into a kitchen/diner or add an island.

Upgrade Your Bathroom

Next up, your bathroom. If you’ve already got a white suite, then you’re already doing pretty well. It’s just the little finishing touches that you might need to change – things like the taps, the sealant around the bath and the grouting around the tiles. Taps can be cheap as chips, even for really nice ones – although you might need a plumber to help you fit them, and they update a bathroom instantly. Some new tiles can also make a huge difference, and if you buy click laminate tiles – in other words, tiles that you don’t really have to “lay” – that you can just click together. Regrouting will stop the bathroom from looking a bit rough and ready and then you can again re-paint, add some new towels, and spend £20 on some canvasses and some accessories and the place’ll look spick and span. A good vinyl floor’ll finish it off beautifully.

The thing to remember with all of this is that each job – even if you’re doing it for only a few hundred or a few thousand pounds – you need to do it right. Rough, scabby edges, unfinished lines, paintmarks in the wrong places, scuffs on the walls, etc etc – it’ll all look a bit cheap. So even if you’re doing it on the cheap – it shouldn’t look cheap. Keep that in the back of your head and the end result will be perfect.

Source: Real Simple

Do’s and Don’ts of Renovating a Period Property

Renovating a period property isn’t easy, but get it right and it’ll be one of the most rewarding things you do – you’ll have a unique home with a wealth of cool and quirky features, and you’ll have done your bit to preserve history in your own home. Read these do’s and don’ts of renovating to find out what to do and how to do it, and click this link for building materials to help you on your way.

periodwindow

  • Do your research. Find out the exact period that the property was built in and find out about the building materials used at the time – slate vs. limestone, patterned tile vs. plain etc. Ensure that the materials you choose are in-keeping with the period of the property
  • Don’t scrimp on the windows. They’re the eyes to a house and if you use cheap PVC windows in a 200-year old property it’ll really compromise the overall aesthetic of the house. Use wooden windows, or do your best to repair the existing frames if your budget allows. This stands especially if you’re trying to restore stained glass windows – don’t get rid of it!
  • Do look for slate and other building materials in reclamation yards. New imitation slate does not match traditional Welsh slate, for example, and it’s often not as strong or sturdy. Head to antique stores or reclamation yards and you should be able to find original materials relatively cheaply. If you get rid of any original materials – for example, if you have to knock down a wall or two, keep the bricks so that you can use them elsewhere in the renovation or donate them to a reclamation yard so that others can make use of them
  • Don’t ignore reproduction bathroom furniture – repro loos and baths can be a brilliantly cheap alternative to reclaimed furniture, particularly if you’re going for a high-end look. Brass showerheads, for example, can fetch £10,000, while a repro could cost around £500 – a huge saving
  • Do avoid a fully fitted kitchen if you’re trying to retain the integrity of the build – go for original dressers and free-standing units instead. That way, you can switch cupboards around and re-jig your kitchen if you need to, instead of having to go for a full re-build. If you do go the fully fitted route choose chunky wood and use belfast sinks instead of modern sinks, along with traditional reclaimed taps instead of modern mixers
  • Do look underneath that cheap carpet before you go ahead and order new flooring. You might be lucky enough to find a full parque floor or traditional tiled fire surround

Source: Period Property UK