Build up not sell up, why property refurbishment is currently the best investment in the UK


Build up not sell up, why property refurbishment is currently the best investment in the UK

Why property refurbishment is currently the best investment


With mortgage rates as low as 2%, it really does seem like the opportune buyers market in the UK.  Here in Essex, the property market is booming just as it is in London.  However,  Brexit has had repercussions that directly affect the UK property market and as sales and purchases of properties slow down, the best thing to do in the short term is to invest in property refurbishment or property renovation.


Many people feel that the only real journey to increasing the property value is to add a kitchen extension or loft conversion. Whilst these are obviously the biggest increases to the properties value, there are various property refurbishment projects and works that will also increase your property price and visual appeal.


The property types that we see, often have scope to add en suite bathrooms, convert bigger rooms into smaller rooms to give added bedroom space or storage space.

They also have attached garages and a drive, which means the garage often can become another room such as a guest bedroom, games room or cinema room. Or the interior is so old and dated, that a complete modernisation would add value without the heavy construction work.


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Whilst the humble conservatory often gives you the highest return to investment, to give you an idea of the types of property refurbishment you can think about doing and a rough value for doing so, please see our list of top 10 property refurbishments to add value to your home.



The top 10 property refurbishments to add value to your home



Loft Conversion

Most houses offer the opportunity for you to go up through the roof (depending on local council regulations) and this is often seen as the best way to add space and therefore increase the property value.

The downside is that firstly it requires you to be totally committed to a major structural refurbishment project. Secondly, in smaller properties, the access can be tricky and could deter a buyer if the ladder or stairway reduces hallway space too drastically.

Expected return: 10% increase in value



Side Extension

If you own a detached or semi-detached property, you could have the opportunity to extend the side of the building, increasing space and often adding room in the kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. In some cases, you can add a new bedroom in its entirety giving you an even better return.

Expected Return: 7-15% increase in value



Kitchen Extension

A new kitchen or kitchen extension, it’s an old favourite, tried and tested and always offers a good return. Add light by extending and adding a skylight in the roof of the extension or modernise the look and feel of the kitchen with integrated goods and add a family dining area or cooking island.

Expected Return: 5.8% increase in value



Convert or Add a Basement

Most popular home renovation, it seems, in Chelsea and central London, but with some of the land space in properties around Chigwell, Loughton and Buckhurst Hill, there is no reason not to look down to add space and value to your property.

Basements are often underused or don’t exist, but if the works can be carried out, you could be missing a trick by not looking at this option.

Expected Return: Up to 200% on investment



Garage Conversion

If you don’t need it, convert it. For those with drives or street parking, a garage is probably a storage unit for your old junk that could be taken to the skip or recycling centre. Do yourselves a favour, clear it out, measure it up and convert that space into living space.

Expected Return: 5-12% increase in value




The conservatory is the most recognised extension and a family favourite. They add space that can be appreciated in both the summer and winter months and are a great way to feel nearer nature without facing the elements. Typically, you won’t need planning permission if the construction doesn’t cover more than half the area of land the original house covered.

Expected return: 5-7% increase in value




Adding a new bathroom, or fitting out a brand new modern fully integrated bathroom can add value not for its practicality but for its visual perspective. For many people, the two most important rooms in the house are the kitchen and bathroom and solid investment here can pay dividends.

Expected Return: 6% increase in value




In some properties the interiors are fine, neutral walls, no clutter, but quite often carpets and laminates are old, worn and scratched. New carpets, laminates or real wooden floors will also add extra value to a property without any structural work. A simple but effective way to add value, as well, is adding central heating.

Expected Return: 150% of spend




The garden is the most underutilised aspect of a property. If the garden is unkempt and overgrown, then it will actually detract value from the property. If it is simple and manageable and maintained it will add value to the property.

You can add a summer house if you have the room which will add to the overall value. Lastly, if you live in an urban area, you could pave or cement the front garden and add a drive, perfect for those inner city areas where you struggle for parking.

Expected Return: Up to £50,000




The property exterior. How your property presents itself is how the buyers will perceive it to be. Ensure the property exterior is maintained to a high standard. Keep paint fresh (could add up to £5,000), ensure the windows are clean and well maintained, double glazing could add up to £40,000.

A well-maintained home exterior will add value not only on the investment you make but the visual sale too. If your house is the one passers-by say “Look at that house” in awe, then your property will sell for more than the others in your street.

Expected Return: 75% return on investment



Whilst our top 10 property refurbishments list is not extensive, it does give thought to what you could possibly do to your own home to add value in times of market volatility. When sales of property slow down the first people to see this are the property agents.


Builders will tell you to invest in property refurbishments whatever the climate as it’s their trade. But a good estate agent or property management company will be able to give you an independent view of the market today.


For more advice on how to improve the value of your home through property refurbishment, please feel free to call Hayley at Hunt Property Services on 0208 502 7667 or email us at

There is a lot more valuable information about renovating your property in our blog, and if you would like regular advice and tips on property refurbishment you can follow us on Instagram and Facebook. 



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