Improve – don’t move

If your plans for moving to a bigger and better house have been put on hold then don’t despair as it may be better to improve the one you’re in. With finances under the squeeze and house prices at crazy levels, you wouldn’t be alone in thinking that it might be better to stay put for a while. One survey has found that 91% of homeowners who were considering a move have now decided to remain for at least another six months. So it seems for many people, the solution is to improve the property you’re currently living in.

There is something to be said for avoiding all the stresses of selling a property in such an uncertain market too. The added benefit of this is that if you do eventually decide the time is right to sell, then you have added extra value on to the home you need to sell. A house is most likely going to be your biggest ever single purchase and so getting the maximum potential from it is really important. With that in mind, what simple steps can you take to increase the value of your current home?

If you feel the need for more space then the common trends include extending up into the loft, down into the basement or out into an extension. Loft conversions can add real value to your home and can be turned into play rooms, home offices, extra bedrooms or a bathroom. Planning permission normally isn’t required which is further good news and while you’re up there, why not think about installing solar panels to reduce your fuel bills? You could even turn it into a home cinema or games room which potential buyers will love. For Home Automation Companies, visit

Improve - don't move

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If you’ve got high hopes for a bigger kitchen or an extra bedroom then you might want to consider an extension. You’ll need planning permission but there are hopes that the government is going to make this process a lot easier. A single or double storey extension can potentially add 10 to 50% to the value of your property so it could well be worth the investment.

Extending down into a basement has been unfashionable but is now coming back into favour. It is still relatively unusual and unique so can add real wow factor to your home. If your home already has an existing cellar space then it’s fairly straightforward to achieve. It can be a slightly more expensive option though as you will need to consider structural issues, damp control and party wall issues. You’ll also need to check that your home is not in a flood risk area.

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If you don’t want to extend or don’t have the budget for it then there are plenty of smaller improvements you can make to get your home feeling fresh again. Redecorating, tidying the garden, installing new doors and windows and even new modern, designer radiators can really bring your home up to date.

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