Home improvements 'add value'

Home owners could boost the value of their property by more than £37,000 by converting the loft or by almost £20,000 by adding an extra bedroom, according to research.

Home improvements add value to a house, it is suggested.
Home improvements add value to a house, it is suggested.

Nationwide Building Society estimated the potential for people to add extra value to their properties as the housing market revival continues to gather pace.

Someone looking to convert their loft could add around 21% on to the value of their home, according to the building society's analysis using its own house price database.

Based on the average house price standing at £178,124 in the first quarter of 2014 according to Nationwide's house price index, this would mean that a loft conversion could add another £37,400 onto the value of their home.

If the home owner decided to add another bedroom to their house, this could potentially add around 11% to the worth of their property, equating to around £19,600, Nationwide found.

An extra bathroom could add around 5% or £8,900 to the value of a typical home. Boosting the floor space in the property by 10% could add a similar amount of value to adding another bathroom.

The analysis follows a string of reports which have pointed to the housing market continuing to spring back into life.

Earlier this week, a report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said that house prices are now rising "strongly" across most parts of the UK. According to the ONS figures, property values leapt 9.1% year-on-year to a new high of £253,000 on average in February.

Some people may also be considering adapting their existing home to make it bigger or more suitable for their needs due to their limited options for moving elsewhere.

Property website Rightmove recently reported that the supply of homes for buyers to choose from in many areas of the South is now "ridiculously tight".

Robert Gardner, Nationwide's chief economist, said that going forward, people are also expected to become increasingly conscious about the energy efficiency of their home.

He said that since 1996, the proportion of homes with double glazing has surged from 30% to 79%.

Mr Gardner continued: "Location remains key to house values, but other factors, such as the size of the property and the number of bedrooms it offers, are also important to home buyers.

"Home improvements that increase the floor area, such as an extension or loft conversion, remain a good way to add value.

"As energy costs continue to rise, measures to improve efficiency also make good economic sense.

"Ultimately of course, the decision to invest in the home is an individual one, taking into account the costs and hassle involved, as well as potential benefits."

Here is the estimated value that could be added to a home by carrying out various alterations, based on the average property value of £178,124, according to Nationwide:

10% increase in floor area, an extra 5% in value or £8,900

Extra bathroom, an extra 5% in value or £8,900

Extra bedroom, an extra 11% in value or £19,600

Loft conversion, an extra 21% in value or £37,400