RICS says that Increasing numbers of homeowners are improving rather than moving home.
48% of chartered surveyor estate agents sais the slow sales market is prompting people to improve their properties rather than move. Across the UK, this was most prevalent in areas where the property market is more depressed, such as Northern Ireland, where 75% were improving rather than moving and the West Midlands (71%). However, even in more buoyant areas such as London, buyers are facing high property prices which are also prompting them to stay in their homes.
For those undertaking work to their homes, 44% of surveyors reported additional bedrooms were the improvement which added the most value. Traditional improvements such as adding a new bathroom or kitchen were the next most valuable, at 18%. Adding a conservatory, or reinstating period features were seen as desirable optional extras but not ones which add value.
Surveyors also noted that costs incurred for improvements will not always be covered by the potential increase in a property’s value, as this also depends on the quality of work and other features of the property, such as its style and location.
Respondents added that external factors were most likely to detract from a property’s price. 40% of surveyors found a property’s proximity to a noisy road or a railway decreased value, while known subsidence was seen as the next most likely to affect value.
David Dalby, professional groups director at RICS, said: “Most properties provide some potential for expansion and improvement