Home Improvements That Can Reduce A Property Value

There are some home improvements that need to be carefully considered if you don't want to reduce the value of your property.





When deciding to take the plunge and do home improvements or renovations, it is in your best interests to do some research before you take any steps. You need to ensure that the renovations you have in mind will add value to the property and not result in a reduction in the value, since some home improvements are not always beneficial and can so easily detract from the overall value of a property.

You might not be thinking about selling the property in the near future but keep in mind that the day may come when you need to sell for one reason or another and renovations that reduce the value of a property might prove to be a bad idea if you are unable to ask for top price.


Where illegal additions have been made to a home, the local town planning can demand that these be removed and put back to original condition.




In light of the above, we take a look at a few home improvements or renovations that are detrimental to the value of a property:


Planning Permission is a Must-Have

Here, as in most other countries around the globe, planning permission is a must. Any renovation or home improvement undertaken without the required planning permission is deemed a no-no and you will be able to sell a property without being able to provide approved plans for additions or alterations. If you are not sure if what you have in mind does require planning permission, the onus is on you - the homeowner to undertake the proper enquiries in this regard

Not only will illegal renovations reduce the price of a property, the local Town Council could also ask that the said renovations been removed and made good to the original condition of the property before any renovations taking place. So, do proper research before you make a huge mistake.


Not all home improvements have a beneficial affect on property values.


Overvaluing a Property

Yes, there is such a thing as spending too much on renovations or home improvements and it is all too easy to do if you don't do some homework beforehand. Spending too much on renovations happens all too often and can mean the difference between making a profit on the sale of a property or having to take a lower offer - one that is in line with other properties in the neighbourhood. That is why some foresight is needed before you have any work done.

Take into consideration the type of improvements you have in mind, the cost of these improvements and then look at properties around you. Look at other properties in the neighbourhood and the selling value of these properties as they compare to yours. If the cost of any improvements is higher than the selling price of surrounding homes, you may find yourself better off moving rather than doing your own home improvements.







Research your neighbourhood before undertaking renovations.


Home Improvements to Avoid


• Altering the Floor Plan

Any home improvements that might change the floor plan of a home to the detriment of its value should be avoided if you don't want to reduce the value of a property. Changes such as converting two small bedrooms into a larger one taking a 3-bedroom home to a 2-bedroom one. In a neighbourhood that offers 3-bedroom homes, only now having 2-bedrooms will make other homes more valuable.


• Messing with the Design

Changing the overall style of a home can also work against your efforts. For example, if the home is situated in a neighbourhood of traditional styles, detracting from this might have the opposite effect, particularly a home that has intrinsic value as a result of its period style.


• Overcapitalising on Fittings and Fixtures

You would think that any monies spent on fittings and fixtures would be well-received, but no. Homeowners have been known to spend a fortune on luxurious fittings and fixtures only to realise no return on investment for these items.


• Hard Landscaping unless Permeable

Removing lawn and decreasing overall garden size may have benefits for you, but buyers don't like looking at a concrete landscape unless it was done on the principle of water-wise efficiency or conversation and not just to create an entire garden entertainment area. Yes, an entertainment area is on the list of priorities for home buyers, but not at the expense of losing an entire garden.


• Luxury Improvements

Undertaking improvements that add luxury rather than practicality can sometimes have an undesired effect and could end up costing you in the long run. Ripping out a bathroom to install a wet room might not be a sensible idea in a neighbourhood that is known for being children-friendly. Or taking up half a garden for a hot tub or swimming pool.


• Inferior Work

There are plenty of home improvements and renovations that increase a property's value but not at the expense of quality of work. Some home improvements, if not done properly, can decrease the value. Before you hire a contractor for work that needs to be done be sure to check references of previous work undertaken. That way, you can ascertain the quality of work done.







Don't waste money on renovations that decrease the value of a property.


The Bottom Line

Give careful consideration to any renovations you are thinking about and how these could impact the value of your property. Are they improvements that are needed to update the house? Are the improvements going to affect the overall floor plan for the better? Keep in mind that following trends to make permanent changes might come back to bite you in the butt since what's popular today might not be as popular 10 years down the line. A good example of this was the 80s trend for coloured bathroom suites. Or another example is wallpapering a home from top-to-bottom unless you plan to remove this should you need to put the house up for sale.








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