Be careful about home improvements
According to some industry experts there may be in an increase in the number of people carrying out large scale home improvements over the coming months as a result of lower consumer interest in purchasing property and fewer properties coming onto the market.
Many sellers are reluctant to sell because of falling house prices and the controversial Home Information Packs. Others cannot find interested parties due to decreased interest from buyers and difficulties getting a mortgage for buyers in light of the financial turmoil in the money markets.
As a result of this experts predict that many homeowners may decide to stay put and carry out home improvements to create extra space as an alternative to selling up and moving on. However, professionals are also warning consumers that are thinking about doing this to be very careful, as they could end up further decreasing the value of their properties through poor quality work.
One industry expert stated: 'DIY is a British obsession, but when it comes to selling a property a new floor or wallpaper is the last thing on a buyer's mind. Plus you can do so much damage to the value of your home with poor DIY.'
He added that a botch job on DIY projects around the home could ultimately cost the homeowner thousands in lost value if and when they decide to sell up.
Carrying out the wrong home improvements can also reduce the value of the property, and consumers should think carefully about the type of improvements that are likely to actually add value, such as a new kitchen or bathroom.
One expert said that with new kitchens and bathrooms it is worth looking at the boiler at the same time: 'If you are going to redo your kitchen or bathroom, look at your boiler at the same time, if it's 10 years old or more it is worth replacing it as part of your project to save you money and the hassle of having to redo the work when it finally gives up the ghost.'
19th November 2007